The week 2 matchup against the New York Giants was definitely an exciting one. With Carson Palmer sitting out, and Drew Stanton lead the team to an unconventional victory.
What am I trying to say here? Ah.. here we go.
Because Stanton started the game, the Cardinals proved they are a formidable top 10 NFL team. How? Stanton is a solid backup. He won't win football games with spectacular play, but neither will he lose games with forcing turnovers. The Cardinals showed they have the talent on special teams and defense to make up for the injuries both on defense and offense.
Time to continue the celebration of all things Arizona Cardinals. The nominees of top plays of the day:
1) Sam Acho 3-yard interception
On 3rd and 8, Larry Foote and Jerraud Powers were sent to blitz Manning. Powers, by blitzing off the edge made Eli Manning panic who threw the ball to his closest receiver, Victor Cruz, who was running a shallow slant across the field. However, Cruz at the beginning of his route tripped over himself so he never saw Manning throw. Oh, and Tommy Kelly got in the way deflecting the throw with his shoulder blade. All of which led to Acho getting his hands on the ball, knocking it into the air and leading to the Giants first turnover of that game.
2) Chander Catanzaro's 49-yard field goal
It was this very type of play the Cardinals made a competition this offseason that allowed Catanzaro to join the team. As good as Feely had played he just couldn't make those long kicks anymore. Catanzaro was able to put the Cardinals up by 10 points and justified the confidence the Cardinals put into the rookie.
3) Ted Ginn Jr's 71-yard punt return touchdown
There wasn't a lot of hope for the Cardinals offense after the first quarter. Ginn earlier in the game made a terrible mistake by trying to create a kickoff return and lost about ten yards on a return. Redemption is sweet. Ginn broke one tackle that knocked himself back four yards and he didn't need to break another tackle as he ran straight through the hole in the middle of the yard and blew past everyone to put the Cardinals up 19-14.
4) Kenny Demen's and Robert Hughes' kickoff recovery
If Ginn's return was the cake, the very next play was the icing. Demens came from behind on Quintin Demps and as he wrapped up knocked the football loose. Robert Hughes was the next closest player, immediately jumping onto the ball at the Giants 21 yard line and leading to another Cards field goal.
5) Rashard Johnson's fumble recovery
With 4:30 seconds left in the game and the Giants driven down the field with ease, Manning dumped off a pass to Rashad Jennings into the flat. Jennings slipped, fell and the ground caused a huge fumble. Rashard Johnson almost lost the ball but was able to both jump on it and haul it in to allow the Cards to maintain their eight point lead.
6) Any of Andre Ellington's great runs
I'll be honest, I had my doubts Andre Ellington could repeat his amazing season, which is why I'm never going to be hired as a scout. Against the Giants it's neigh impossible to choose a play better or more important than another. Ellington completed runs of 22, 15 and another 15-yard run. He ended with a stat line of 15 attempts with 91 yards.
I couldn't make a choice. On both Ellington and the other plays. What's your play of the game?