The 5: Best moments from each of the Cardinals’ 2015 primetime games
Sep 9, 2016, 6:59 AM | Updated: 8:54 pm
When the biggest spotlight shone on the Arizona Cardinals last season, they couldn’t have provided much more entertainment.
Bruce Arians’ club went 5-0 in regular-season primetime games in 2015, and each outing was chock-full of moments that ranged from entertaining to amazing to goofy.
As Arizona prepares to face the New England Patriots at home for its 2016 opener — a primetime battle on Sunday Night Football — we remember the 2015 season’s primetime games and the best moments within each.
Some you might remember. The others? You’ll feel silly for ever forgetting.
He’s still got it (Week 7)
Before a Monday Night Football matchup on Oct. 26 against the Baltimore Ravens, the Cardinals had blown out three lesser teams to begin the season but had lost two of three heading into the game. With all due respect to Tony Jefferson’s game-saving pick in a 26-18 victory, two more eye-popping highlights were courtesy Chris Johnson’s runs that reassured Cardinals fans the beginning of the year was not a fluke from the one-time star running back. First was Johnson’s jaw-busting downtown run. Then came the 62-yard burst that included him rolling over a defender. He finished with a season-high 122 yards on 18 carries.
Dancing QBs (Week 10)
Beating the rival Seattle Seahawks 39-32 on Sunday, Nov. 15, brought out all of the emotions. Backup quarterback Drew Stanton’s emotions gave way to his sideline dance that’s now being used in NFL commercials. Starting quarterback Carson Palmer let Seattle fans know just how he felt with body language that wasn’t quite as PC. Lost in the mix in this victory was Larry Fitzgerald’s 130 yards, his second-biggest yardage total of the season.
Cat-Man closes wild final drive (Week 11)
An ugly first half made way for Carson Palmer remaining aggressive by hitting J.J. Nelson for a 64-yard touchdown early in the third quarter, but a late game-winning drive was still needed as the Bengals responded. With the game tied, Arizona’s offense moved down the field, got help from an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and set up kicker Chandler Catanzaro for a 32-yard game-winner — his first in his career — that gave the Cardinals a 34-31 win. Oh, and the Cat-Man dabbed after making the big kick
All the highlights (Week 14)
Catanzaro hit his second consecutive game-winning field goal in this Dec. 10 Thursday night win over the Vikings — and it was maybe the fifth-best thing to happen in the game. After signing with the Cardinals in the middle of the season, veteran Dwight Freeney’s signature spin move and forced fumble of quarterback Teddy Bridgewater sealed the game for Arizona. The game also included offensive lineman Mike Iupati turning into a receiver and Fitzgerald leveling a poor Vikings receiver to help teammate Michael Floyd find the end zone.
Coming out party (Week 15)
Flex scheduling moved the Cardinals back into the Sunday night spotlight, and a 40-17 blowout on Dec. 20 might best be known for Tyrann Mathieu’s season-ending ACL injury. But it should also be known as rookie running back David Johnson’s coming-out party. The Northern Iowa product rushed for 187 yards and three touchdowns on 29 carries. He also caught four catches for 42 yards.