Big Red Recap: Patrick Peterson, Drew Stanton save the day for Arizona Cardinals
GLENDALE, Ariz. — There’s just something about this football team.
The “next man up” mentality was put to the test once again Sunday, and once again the Arizona Cardinals passed that test.
Trailing 14-10 midway through the fourth quarter, Drew Stanton relieved the injured Carson Palmer and found John Brown on a scintillating 48-yard touchdown pass that gave the Cardinals the lead.
Patrick Peterson and Antonio Cromartie would add defensive touchdowns 1:15 apart and the Cardinals would go on to beat the St. Louis Rams 31-14 at a sold-out University of Phoenix Stadium.
Now the bad news. Palmer was pressured by St. Louis safety Mark Barron on a third down, and moved forward in the pocket. When his left foot hit the ground, Palmer buckled and went down without any contact from the Rams defense. He stayed on the field for several minutes and walked off under his own power — the knee buckling again as he reached the sideline. He was then carted to the Arizona locker room.
Head coach Bruce Arians said the team had no information on Palmer’s condition, but he would undergo an MRI and hopefully results would be available by Tuesday.
With the win, the Cardinals push their league-best record to 8-1 on the season.
Stanton, who quarterbacked the Cardinals to two wins in Palmer’s absence earlier this season, completed all three of his passes on his first drive, covering 86 yards.
The defense was amazing again, holding the Rams to 244 total yards, forcing three turnovers and scoring two defensive touchdowns. They also sacked St. Louis QB Austin Davis six times after having only eight sacks in their first eight games.
The Cardinals’ defense was solid again, but got victimized by the big 59-yard pass from Davis to Jared Cook in the second quarter.
Arizona’s running game never got on track. The Cardinals had only 28 yards on 22 carries against the talented St. Louis front seven. Andre Ellington had a season-low 23 yards on 18 carries, although he did score on a three-yard touchdown run in the second quarter to open the scoring for Arizona. Five of Ellington’s 18 carries went for negative yardage and the Cardinals’ longest run was only five yards.
• Rookie Chandler Catanzaro tied an NFL record when he connected on a 43-yard field goal in the second quarter. It was Catanzaro’s 17th straight make at the start of his career, tying Washington’s Kai Forbath. However, he’d miss a 53-yard field goal attempt in the fourth quarter to snap the string.
• The Cardinals are now 15-3 in their last 18 games, dating back to last season.
• Palmer failed to throw a touchdown pass, snapping a streak of 18 games with at least one.
Player of the Game
Calais Campbell was a monster Sunday. The Arizona defensive end had six tackles, two sacks, four tackles for loss and two other quarterback hurries.
You can certainly make an argument for Peterson as well. One play after getting flagged on a very iffy illegal contact penalty, Peterson picked off Davis for his first interception of the season. His second, on St. Louis’ next drive, was returned for a touchdown that effectively iced the game.
He Said It
“What a beautiful win. It always takes 60 minutes to play this game, that’s why they put it on the clock. It wasn’t the prettiest 45, but it was a nice 15.” — Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians
The Cardinals host the NFC North-leading Detroit Lions (7-2) Sunday at University of Phoenix Stadium. Kickoff is at 2:25 p.m. with pregame coverage starting at 10:30 a.m. on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM.