Arizona Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson has built up a reputation around the league as one of the best cornerbacks in the game. Analytics sites like Pro Football Focus tell a slightly different story, noting that his play is uneven, but he has games that are absolutely fantastic.
Week 15 against the Tennessee Titans was not one of those games.
Tennessee tried something different -- they picked on Peterson.
According to Pro Football Focus, against the Rams in Week 14, Peterson was not thrown at a single time.
The Titans targeted him defensively 10 times. It was the third time this season he was targeted that often.
In Week 5, against the Panthers, he was thrown at 10 times and gave up only three catches. Against the Houston Texans in Week 10, he was also targeted 10 times and he allowed five catches to Andre Johnson. Those catches were as tough as they could be.
Ryan Fitzpatrick, though, gave Peterson trouble. The Tennessee quarterback threw at him 10 times and completed nine passes, good for 146 yards and a touchdown. It was by far the worst showing he has had this season.
According to PFF's archives, it is the most receptions Peterson has ever given up in a game.
Reason for concern? Perhaps not. Peterson talked about how communication with the new players in the defensive backfield was an issue and they had to adjust to one another. That obviously will not explain all the catches, but it does give some context.
Hopefully Peterson bounces back quickly for the Seattle game. Golden Tate is a tough matchup. Peterson gave up five catches for 80 yards at home in Week 7 against the Seahawks.
If the Cards are going to have a chance of upsetting Seattle on the road, they will need one of Peterson's best games in coverage. If he struggles again, it will probably be a long afternoon on Sunday.
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