Arizona Cardinals Defeat San Diego Chargers 18-17


Sep 8, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals wide receiver John Brown (12) celebrates with running back Jonathan Dwyer (20) after scoring a 13 yard touchdown during the second half against the San Diego Chargers at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

This game was really a tale of two halves.  In the first half both the Arizona Cardinals and the San Diego Chargers were trying to feel each other out.  It was a field goal fest that the Cards led 6-3 at halftime.  Some false starts and delay of games early and some entertaining offense that did nothing on the scoreboard.  In the second half we saw a bit more effective offense, much of it from the Chargers.  In the end though, it was the Cards offense that was on target and defeated the Chargers 18-17.

The Cards defense seemed to be a step behind the Chargers in the second half most of the time.  Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers, went found his tight end in Antonio Gates finally, including a huge 34-yarder on third down half way through the fourth quarter.  But in the end their offense stalled and the Cards didn’t.

Quarterback Carson Palmer went 24-37 for 304 yards and two touchdowns.  He did not throw an interception, although the Chargers dropped on in the first half.  He went 12-13 on the two touchdown drives in the fourth quarter.  That is clutch no matter what you think.  He threw two touchdowns, one to running back Stepfan Taylor and one to rookie John Brown.  Two-point conversions failed on both.

The Chargers were left with one last drive but the Cards non-stop blitzing defense was able to get Rivers to throw three straight incompletions.  The Cards got the ball back with 1:49 left in the game and needed just one Jonathan Dwyer first down to seal the deal.  It wasn’t always pretty.  It wasn’t always effective.  In the end, it was a win.  That’s all that matters at the end of the day.