It was an ominous start for the Arizona Cardinals as they found themselves down a touchdown just two minutes into their road game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. But things quickly turned around for head coach Bruce Arians' crew, and they escaped the Sunshine State with a third straight victory, winning this one by a 27-14 final score.
The Cardinals (6-4) did everything well but run the ball on Sunday, which was surprising because of how poorly Jacksonville's defense had defended the run all season.
Two players on offense enjoyed career-type days, so this vote could be close. Let's get to the candidates so you can vote for he who is most worthy this week.
Stats: 30 of 42 (71.4%), 419 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT, 119.0 passer rating
Well then, Mr. Carson Palmer, have yourself a day why don't you. If ever there was a team to come out and destroy, it was the Jaguars. Palmer did just that, completing nearly three-quarters of his passes and hitting nine different receivers.
He surpassed 400 passing yards for the sixth time in his career and won a game while doing so for the first time. Palmer is also the 26th quarterback in NFL history to win a 400-yard passing game at age 33 or older.
Side note: The Cardinals Sunday joined the Minnesota Vikings and Denver Broncos as the only franchises with three different quarterbacks age 33 or older to win a 400-yard passing game (Boomer Esiason, 1993; Dave Krieg, 1995).
Stats: 3 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 QB hit, 1 sack, 1 pass defended
Outside linebacker John Abraham recorded his seventh sack of the season on Sunday. He was in on a few more plays in the backfield but was unable to come up with multiple takedowns for a fourth consecutive contest.
Abraham has become a complete linebacker in a short time after playing well over a decade primarily as a pass-rushing defensive end. His play has lifted the defense of late to new heights.
Stats: 6 receptions, 193 yards, 32.2 YPC, 91-yard TD
The game didn't start out very well for Michael Floyd -- he dropped two passes that would have extended early drives. But boy, did he ever turn it on after that.
His 91-yard touchdown is the longest touchdown reception for the Cardinals since Ernie Jones caught a 93-yarder in 1988 from Neil Lomax.
Floyd did a bit of everything on Sunday. He was great after the catch, he went up to get a ball at the sideline and was brilliant catching passes in traffic. It was a career game for Floyd, and hopefully he and Palmer can keep it going the rest of the season.
Stats: 5 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 pass defended
Inside linebacker Karlos Dansby played a great game in Jacksonville. One play in particular stands out, as he blew up a screen pass to Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew.
His instincts are as good as anyone on the team, and he has been playing out of his mind all season.
Stats: 6 receptions, 70 yards, 11.7 YPC
No touchdown for Rob Housler this week, though he did come close at one point. But Housler was open a lot on Sunday, providing Palmer with a solid tight end option for the second straight week.
If he keeps it up, the breakout year he was supposed to have may still end up as such.