One of the biggest surprises in week 16 of the 2013 NFL Season was the Seattle Seahawks losing at home for the first time in two years. It doesn’t hurt them too much, but it certainly gives the Arizona Cardinals a slightly better chance of making the playoffs, although winning next week won’t be enough for them, needing a little bit of outside help.
With the 17-10 win over the Seahawks thanks to some brutal defense that made up for Carson Palmer throwing four interceptions, the Cardinals enter week 17 needing to beat the San Francisco 49ers and hope for a New Orleans loss to the Atlanta Falcons, which doesn’t sound like the likeliest of occurrences.
Still, there’s been quite an impressive job done in Arizona by Bruce Arians, with the team rebounding after an awful finish to the 2012 season. The Cardinals sacked Russell Wilson four times and forced an interception, forced another fumble and kept the Seahawks on only 192 total yards of offense and only 22 minutes with the ball.
How do you do that with a quarterback who throws four interceptions? Putting on one of the more impressive defensive performances we’ve seen from anyone this season. Marshawn Lynch was once again limited to less than 4 yards per carry, a fifth consecutive game that has happened to him. That really hurt the play-action the Seahawks rely upon, as Wilson was able to complete only 2-of-10 passes on play-action for 36 yards and an interception. It was a game to forget for Wilson, completing only 40.7% of his passes for a career low 108 yards, adding 32 yards on two carries when running the ball.
The Sehawks had a lot of problems with Daryl Washington and Calais Campbell, who combined to sack Wilson three times and bring on the pain five more times during the game. They didn’t have too much of a problem of getting to Palmer – four interceptions, two sacks and nine quarterback hits. However, Palmer did come out quite big when it matters the most, forgetting about all of his early mistakes and throwing a 31 yard touchdown pass to Michael Floyd, giving the Cardinals the win with 2:13 left in the game. All the Seahawks could do on their final drive was throw an interception on the first play, and let Palmer knee his way to victory.
Carson Palmer – An ugly win is a win regardless of how it comes out. There was a handful of times where the ball really bounced their way today and we were resilient, kept fighting, kept believing and came out and got a win.
There was also the matter of revenge, with the Cardinals not forgetting about the 58-0 loss from last season.
Darnell Dockett – Any time you come on the road and the team beats you 58-0 and you have to come back to their place, it lingers to the back of your head. If you got any pride in any game of football, when a team beats you by 58, you know you think about it and it’s stuck on you.