Arizona Cardinals vs Cleveland Browns: Game balls


The Arizona Cardinals defeated the Cleveland Browns on Sunday 34-20 to go to 6-2 on the season

A number of players for the Arizona Cardinals once again had a direct impact on the outcome of the game, a victory over the Cleveland Browns.  The offense had a better day than the defense overall but the defense did come up big in the second half.

Here are my three game balls for the game on Sunday.  You’ll recognize some familiar names.

Game ball #1:

Michael Floyd

By far Floyd had his best game of the season.  He caught four passes for 106 yards and a touchdown.  He caught a 60-yard pass from quarterback Carson Palmer early in the third quarter to quickly close the gap to a 20-17 Cleveland lead at the time.

What didn’t show up in the box score was the touchdown catch Floyd made that didn’t count.  Initially it appeared that Floyd caught a 19-yard touchdown pass from Palmer with just seconds left on the clock in the first half.  The catch would have made it a 20-14 game at halftime.

Instead, the Cardinals were called for an illegal shift because they weren’t set on the play to Floyd.  So unfortunately the Cardinals had to settle for a field goal.  It was an amazing grab by Floyd that was all for naught.

Game ball #2:

Carson Palmer

Again Palmer has to be recognized.  Sure, he threw a ball that was intercepted by Tashuan Gipson in the third quarter.  You could argue that receiver Larry Fitzgerald was held but it was still a ball that shouldn’t have been thrown.

He did make some really great throws though.  The 60-yard touchdown pass to Floyd was outstanding.  He threaded the needle a number of times to Fitzgerald.  He found tight end Troy Niklas in the end zone twice for touchdowns.  He really spread the wealth on Sunday.

He threw the ball to nine different players on Sunday, hitting seven of them for receptions.  He did all of that without John Brown, who although active, did not play on Sunday due to a hamstring injury.  In the end Palmer was 23-38 for 374 yards with four touchdowns and one interception.

Game ball #3:

Kevin Minter

The linebacker had for the most part a really good day.  Yes, he had one ridiculous penalty.  However on the day he had seven tackles, one of them for a loss.  He also hit Browns quarterback Josh McCown twice.  He put the pressure on that was needed.

His penalty happened on a play that I’m not sure Minter could have done much to change but in that situation he needed to be smarter.  McCown was going to the ground on a slide and Minter laid his shoulder into his helmet, a big no-no.  After looking at the replay several times it appeared he could have pulled up.

In the grand scheme of things it was a bang bang play.  I like the aggressive way that Minter is playing right now.  He is starting to turn into the player many thought he’d turn into when drafted out of LSU.