Jimmy Garoppolo’s serving of humble pie to the Cardinals in Week 1 could serve them well. Arizona responded with aggression this week, especially on defense, in a 40-7 destruction of the Buccaneers. The Cardinals were much more creative, confusing Bucs Quarterback Jameis Winston. Coach Bruce Arians replaced rookie starting cornerback Brandon Williams with Marcus Cooper and the move paid off.
The defense was exceptionally destructive against the Buccaneers. Winston was knocked off his game all afternoon, tossing up four interceptions and losing one fumble. Cooper had two of those picks, returning one to the house, virtually icing the game.
David Johnson is threatening to take over the mantle as the best back in football and Carson Palmer hit some deep shots Sunday after a slow start. Only the Cardinals could put up 40 points with 22 yards combined from John Brown and Michael Floyd. The talent is deep here and the news around the NFC West was favorable. The Seahawks lost in Los Angeles, so there’s a four-way tie at 1-1 in the division. The Cardinals have the Bills, Rams and 49ers next on the schedule. That screams 4-1.
The box score was full for the Cardinals on Sunday. Palmer threw for 308 yards and three touchdowns with no turnovers, and backup quarterback Drew Stanton played most of the fourth quarter. Larry Fitzgerald had his second consecutive solid game, as he nabbed six balls for 81 yards and a score. As usual, David Johnson did David Johnson things, with 143 total yards on 15 touches.
The Cardinals will look to keep things rolling next week as they head to Orchard Park to take on the 0-2 Buffalo Bills.