The trap game. The letdown. Any given Sunday. Would today be that day for the Arizona Cardinals?
The Cardinals stumbled out of the gate today, offense suffering miscues and sacks. Kevin Kolb threw a pick just before half. Defense, the strong suit of the team, struggled with the sitting of Darnell Dockett. Rookie QB Ryan Tannehill was far too efficient from the pocket, even more so on third down. Results 13 - 0 Miami at halftime.
Was the half a difference maker? The defense woke up to start the drive, and Kevin Kolb found Andre Roberts to chew up large chunks of real estate before capping it off with a 3 yard turn and thrown to Larry Fitzgerald, who made the end zone. Penalties extended Miami drives or killed Cardinal ones. Greg Toler is starting to show flashes of what he was pre injury. The Dolphins generated better pass pressure than the Cardinals did. Who missed Rob Housler from Kolb down the seam? That needs to occur much more often.
Andre Roberts went off in today's game, both in YAC and TDs. He might be my player of the game.
Patrick Peterson made punt returns look difficult all day, and, when compiled with plenty of yellow laundry had the Cardinals in poor starting position most of the game.
Speaking of Patrick Peterson, the fumble recovery and return inside the five might just have made up for the poor return game.
Ball security. If they offer classes on the subject, Kolb needs to sign up. How do you throw a pick on the 2 yard line?
Blown coverage. Brian Hartline made the Cardinals secondary look bad today. I've got to assume plenty of film time will be spent on this as Tannehill threw for over 400 yards.
Daryl Washington forced fumble on Tannehill with just under three minutes to go, amazing. Washington was explosive off the snap.
Overall, the Cardinals were bested in every aspect of the game today. In the end, when it mattered, Paris Lenon crashed down on Tannehill, and Kerry Rhodes picked off the errant pass. Then Jay Feely's leg gave the Cards a victory in overtime. Final score 24 - 21 Arizona.
4 - 0. Hopefully this come from behind victory has opened the Cardinal's eyes to the rest of the season. Tune in next week when the Cards take on the St. Louis Rams.