The Arizona Cardinals appeared to be in trouble late in the first half on Sunday in Cleveland. Down 20-7, it looked like they were going to be served a little humble pie and lose to a perennially bad team. Then they drove down the field and kicked a field goal to pull it to within 10 before halftime and then outscored Cleveland 24-0 in the second half.
According to Cardinals safety, it was the highlight of the season coming back and dominating the way they did in the second half.
"We knew we weren't playing our ball we were used to," he told me in a recent interview when he was promoting the new Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 game that will go on sale on Friday. "We were just kind of letting things happened and we stood up and we rose to the challenge."
He said the way they responded showed "how much trust we have in each other."
"I think for me that was the highlight so far this season to see everyone come together," he explained. "Now we know we're capable of doing it again if we're ever caught in the situation again during the season. We know we can do it."
Jefferson said the coaching staff :kind of got on us at halftime.
That is an understatement. We all have heard about the tirade Bruce Arians went on then, questioning whether they were contenders or pretenders.
When asked how much of what Arians said to the team could be repeated, he said "about two percent."
However, this reaction was not typical of Arians. "That's a rare occasion him doing that at halftime," Jefferson said. "I will tell you it worked."
The Cardinals went through another such halftime a season ago when an otherwise very calm Todd Bowles ripped into his defense. Jefferson called that one "an unforgettable moment," and even said Bowles hurt himself in that halftime fit.
Entering the second half of the season against a seemingly tougher schedule, having that confidence is key. They know they can rally offensively and shut teams down defensively.
In what will likely be a very tight NFC race down the stretch, Arizona will need to know they can come back and overcome adversity.
Jefferson says the second half of Cleveland was the highlight. If you had to pick one, what would it be?