Rapid Reaction: Arizona Cardinals 22 Carolina Panthers 6

Oct 6, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) runs the ball during the second quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

They were their own worst enemy today.  The Carolina Panthers played just bad enough to allow your Arizona Cardinals to come away with a 22-6 victory.  Again, it wasn’t pretty but a win nonetheless.

What was good:

The Arizona Cardinals second-half ball control and the Cards defense.  Let’s be honest here without the Cards offense finally running the ball after only six rushing plays in the first half, the Cards would not have been able to climb back into the time of possession game with the Panthers.  The running game also gave the Cards their only touchdown.  As for the defense, well, a Calais Campbell sack of Panthers quarterback Cam Newton for a safety in the third quarter was huge.  They had seven sacks of Newton on the day.

What didn’t work:

The passing game.  Quarterback Carson Palmer had three interceptions and most of his passes were check downs to the running backs – again.  He did get Michael Floyd for a couple of nice first downs on their fourth quarter field goal drive.  He did throw a late touchdown pass to tight end Jim Dray, which was actually nice to see to put a nail in the coffin of the Panthers.

The bottom line:

The Cards won another ugly game.  It wasn’t as ugly as last week but it was close.  The defense gets the game ball again.  I’ll take it.  The offense did just enough today with what the defense gave them.  Next week they will not be able to get away with what they have the last two weeks, as the Cards travel to San Francisco.

Edgar Valenzuela will have a full recap of today’s game later on.  For now, the Cards are 3-2 and move on to a couple of division games.

Topics: Arizona Cardinals, Carolina Panthers

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