Giants were off a huge win over Seattle and were the darlings atop of the NFC West. Cards had lost three in a row and headed in the opposite direction. The Giants were 5-7 atop the NFC East, looking to upset another NFC West opponent after stunning Seattle.
The Cardinals desperately needed a win after losing three straight and falling to 6-6.
"Cards "D" Stiff-Arms G-Men."
The Bottom Line:
The game began as a defensive cat fight, with both Murray and Daniel Jones unable to get much going...But that changed...LB Haason Reddick had a lot to do with it, delivering five sacks.
Cards gradually widened their lead to 20 - 0 midway thru the 3Q. Cardinals (League red zone leaders) saw their first three trips to the red zone shut down -- held to only two field goals -- before things began to tilt in their favor. A forced fumble followed their second field goal, - one followed by LB Kylie Fitts kicking the ball out of the hands of Dion Lewis on a KO return. Cards took advantage of this with a 7 yd touchdown toss from Murray to tight end Dan Arnold - who made a leaping catch at the back of the end zone - to widen the Cardinal lead to 13.
Two more turnovers by the Giants turned into 10 points for the Cardinals in the 1H, and the Cardinals defense didn't ease up on Jones after halftime. (He'd go on to fumble three times in the game, and Colt McCoy would eventually take the field). The Giants sole "big play" was a 39-yard reception by Golden Tate that set up the team's only touchdown. Giants were just as impotent ion the ground.
"The last time you saw this many sacks, you were looking in Santa's warehouse." (Ho Ho Ho). Anytime a player can get to the opposing quarterback five times in a single game, odds are his team will walk away victorious. Hassan Reddick ran wild, tying the franchise record for most sacks in a game.with five QB hits; all five of his tackles were sacks. Cardinals ended the day with eight sacks in all, thanks to LBs Markus Golden (1 sack) and Dennis Gardeck (2 sacks). The relentless pressure "stranded the Giants passing attack on the tarmac." , Stout interior defensive line play helped nix the New York rushing attack.
Cards held Wayne Gallman, Jr. to 57 rushing yards.
Giant defense played like they thought they could win this sucker, but they got little help from the offense.
Giants repeatedly suffered through shortened offensive drives that gave their defensive players little rest and eventually caused noticeable fatigue after essentially shutting down Murray for almost the entire 2H -- with the Giants ossessing the ball only 22:08 while allowing the Cardinals to control the clock for 37:52.
1st Quarter Ari NYG
Ari 8:30 FG Mike Nugent 34 - Cards 3 - Giants 0
2nd Quarter Ari NYG
Ari 6:36 FG Mike Nugent 37 - Cards 6 - Giants 0
Ari 8:07 Dan Arnold 7 pass from Kyler Murray (Mike Nugent Kick) - Cards 13 - Giants 0
3rd Quarter Ari NYG
Ari 6:08 Kenyan Drake 1 run (Mike Nugent Kick) - Cards 20 - Giants 0
NYG 9:22 Dion Lewis 1 run (Graham Gano Kick) - Cards 20 - Giants 7
4th Quarter Ari NYG
Ari 2:22 FG Mike Nugent 34 - Cards 23 - Giants 7
Ari 12:19 FG Mike Nugent 30 - Cards 26 - Giants 7
Final Score: Cards 26 - Giants 7
Stingy Card 3rd down defense
Card were an acrobatic one-handed catch away from pitching a shutout
Giants didn't sack Murray.
Only 4 penalties
As with most w"orks of art", we'll let this masterpiece speak for itself.
Still unresolved - this peformance shpws us how good the Cardinals can be, but it doesn't show us whether we can play that good over a 3 - 4 game period. Cards will have the opportunity to "show the world", but opponents llke the Eagles, Niners and Rams won't make the jobs easy. Rams look the closest to unbeatable. Under the right circumstances, we should be able to handle Philly and SF.
We're nearing the point where landing a playoff spot "ain't about them."/ It's all about us.