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Cardinals vs. Steelers post-game thoughts

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Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Arguably the Cardinals have been playing a powder puff schedule up until this point of the season. Though no faulth of their own, their opponents are having poor years and this week they go up against a decent Steelers team, who as you'll hear all week in highlights, were without Ben Roethlisberger.

1) Running Game

This is the biggest factor the Cardinals lost the game.

I know Arians subscribes to using the passing game to set up the running game, but frankly it doesn't matter if you can't run the ball. Chris Johnson averaged 2.9 yards per carry. The offensive line was atrocious and never opened any holes. Forcing the Cardinals to have to play how the Steelers dictated the entire game.

Meanwhile, the Steelers struggled with 60 yards total offense in the first half, but continued pounding the ball and it in the second half Le'Veon Bell essentially carried the offense opening up the passing offense.

2) Penalties

9 for 111 yards. Now let's be honest, a few of those penalites were disgutingly bad calls, but most were correct. That's called beating yourself.

But if we're being honest. The referees sucked. There were a lot of pass interference non-calls on the Steelers that cost both field position and even a potential touchdown. Nothing is more frustrating than when your team is getting questionable penalties and the opposing team is getting free reign.

3) Turnovers

Cardinals had 3, Steelers had 0. The first interception by Palmer was a fluke grab, but the fumble and second interception were not good. The Cardinals need to learn to protect the ball in pressure situations.

4) Pass Rush

We're going into Bruce Arians third year and we don't have a good pass rush. Alex Okafor out with injury didn't help, but even with him in the game it may not have changed much. Michael Vick and Landry Jones had plenty of time all game in the pocket and took apart the Cardinals in the second half.

5) Landry Jones

He wasn't good, but he was called upon to do much. A good pass here or there while relying on the running game. It's was a third string quarterback should look like, take notes Bruce.

6) Pittsburgh Offense and Defense

Pittsburgh has an explosive offense, it'll be scary once Big Ben comes back. Meanwhile, their run defense is also great. They may give the Bengals a run for the AFC North title.

Final Thoughts

I can't even write anymore. It's not that the Cardinals played poorly in every facet of the game, it's that in the areas they played poorly they just flat out were awful.

Like Jesse said in his recap, everyone's claim the Cardinals aren't a good team but have been beating up on bad teams is true. At this point, I'm not even sure the Cardinals are the best team in the NFC West. This is not how a top NFL team plays.

It's a fact the Cardinals have been blowing out bad teams, but they haven't shown the ability to handle adversity. Both against the Rams and now Steelers the running game was stopped and even at the end of the game the Cardinals couldn't score a touchdown.