Week 8 Game Recap: Arizona Cardinals 13, Dallas Cowboys 34
What you need to know
The Arizona Cardinals have now lost 14 consecutive games at Texas Stadium. Their last win coming in Dallas came in 1989. The Cardinals’ offense began the game strong scoring ten points in their first three possessions. Neil Rackers opened the scoring with a 52 yard field goal after a ten play 43 yard drive. Their third drive of the game was an impressive eleven play, 77 yard drive that culminated in a 44 yard touchdown from Josh McCown to Anquan Boldin. Except for a 47 yard field goal by Rackers off a Dallas turnover to start the second half, the Cowboys stifled the Cardinals’ offense.
Neil Rackers remains perfect on the season with 22 consecutive field goals. Josh McCown was sacked three times and under constant pressure from the Dallas defense. Once again the Cardinals were unable to establish any type of running game as the team finished with 71 yards rushing on 24 attempts.
Cardinals WR Anquan Boldin suffered what appears to be a torn meniscus in his right knee. He will undergo further testing Monday morning to determine the severity of the injury.
The Dallas Cowboys played almost a perfect first half of offensive football scoring on four of their five first half possessions. Marion Barber III ran for 90 yards on 14 attempts in the first half and a running back controversy may be coming in Dallas as Barber looked fantastic.
Drew Bledsoe was close to perfect in the first half as well including going seven for seven on their third possession with a touchdown pass to Keyshawn Johnson.
The Cowboys played very conservatively in the second half letting their defense control the game and protect their lead. Anthony Henry returned a Josh McCown interception 58 yards for a touchdown for the Cowboys’ only points in the second half. New kicker Shaun Suisham was perfect on the day with two short field goals and four extra points.
The Cowboys were not penalized on the game.
What you ought to know
|QB Josh McCown, Pass: 16 - 33 - 161 - 1 TD / 2 INT, Rush: 4 - 16 - 0|
Josh McCown struggled against the Cowboys’ front four. Under constant pressure he completed 16 of 33 passes with one TD and two interceptions. He scrambled four times for 16 yards. Both interceptions came in the fourth quarter and were both a result of Cowboys’ pressure. Without a threat of a running game the Cowboys were able to blanket his receivers while overwhelming the offensive line with blitzes.
|RB Marcel Shipp, Rush: 12 - 44 - 0, Rec: 4 - 25 - 0 (5 targets)|
Shipp was the team’s leading rusher on the game with 44 yards on 12 attempts. He also had four catches for 25 yards. The Cardinals’ offensive line was unable once again to open holes.
Arrington finished with four carries for five yards and had one catch for eight yards.
Ayanbadejo had one catch for two yards and carried the ball twice for one yard.
|WR Anquan Boldin, Pass: 0 - 1 - 0 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - 0 - 0, Rec: 3 - 69 - 1 (8 targets)|
Boldin had three catches for 69 yards and a touchdown. He was targeted eight times but many of the throws were considerably off target due to the pressure Dallas applied to quarterback Josh McCown. Boldin did have a pass attempt off a wide receiver reverse but threw the incompletion into triple coverage on Larry Fitzgerald by the Cowboys.
Fitzgerald was targeted eleven times but was only able to grab four passes for 36 yards. Many passes thrown his way were uncatchable as they were rushed due to Cowboys’ pressure on Josh McCown.
Johnson had two catches for 14 yards on the day. If Anquan Boldin misses time with the knee injury, Johnson will be counted on to contribute more.
Bergen had one catch for seven yards.
Rackers continues to be perfect on the season, connecting on 52 and 47 yard field goals. On the season he is 22 for 22.
Marion Barber III exploited the Cardinals’ rush defense for 127 yards and two touchdowns. Strong safety Adrian Wilson led the team in tackles with seven. He also had a sack. The Cardinals allowed 4.6 yards per carry on the day to the Cowboys.
The Cardinals’ pass defense was not much better than their rush defense on the day. Drew Bledsoe was 19 for 24 on the day for 220 yards. They did have three sacks on Bledsoe, two of those sacks by Bertrand Berry.
|QB Drew Bledsoe, Pass: 19 - 24 - 220 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - 0 - 0|
Bledsoe had a very efficient day completing 19 of 24 passes for 220 yards and a touchdown. At one point in the first half he completed ten consecutive passes including a drive where he went seven for seven culminating in a five yard touchdown to Keyshawn Johnson. Drew did have two fumbles and lost one of them. The Cowboys continue to have issues with the center exchange from time to time including twice today.
Barber made a statement today and also may have brought about a running back by committee situation when Julius Jones returns to health. On the day he ran 27 times for a career high 127 yards and two touchdowns. He showed great vision to the holes, hitting them decisively and with power. He showed excellent power and drive as both of the touchdown runs were plays where a lesser RB might have been stopped. This was truly one of those situations where the box score does not do justice to the performance.
Coach Bill Parcells gushed over Barber after the game, ``That kid will run, he will block and he will catch,'' Parcells said. ``I don't know if he's going to be Gale Sayers, I kind of doubt that. But he is a complete back. ... I'm proud of him. There's a lot of pressure on him right now.''
Barber also had two catches for 15 yards as a check down option for Bledsoe.
Thompson had four carries for 19 yards. He came in to spell Barber in the third quarter for two carries and finished out the game with the final two carries of the game.
Keyshawn had six catches for 54 yards and a touchdown. He had a potential second touchdown go off his fingertips in the third quarter. Johnson was targeted seven times. The Cowboys played very conservatively in the second half with Bledsoe only attempting seven passes.
Glenn finished the game with three catches for 65 yards. He was targeted five times on the game and with a 24–10 lead at the half the Cowboys played very conservatively in the second half.
Price played in all the three wide receiver sets and finished with one catch for five yards.
Jason Witten was the Cowboys' leading receiver on the day with five catches for 71 yards including a beautiful 34 yard catch and run a screen pass on the Cowboys’ second play of the game. Like the rest of the Cowboys’ receivers most of his damage was done in the first half as the Cowboys threw only seven passes in the second half as they played very conservatively protecting their lead.
Suisham was perfect on the day for the Cowboys with two short field goals and four extra points.
The Cowboys’ rush defense was effective on the day limiting the weak Cardinals’ rush offense to 3.0 yards per carry. Roy Williams led the Cowboys with seven tackles. On the day the Cardinals rush for 71 yards on 24 attempts.
The Cowboys applied constant pressure to Josh McCown and forced him into many errant passes. The Cardinals managed 213 total yards and an average of 3.5 yards per play. The Cowboys held the Cardinals to 142 net passing yards and had three sacks and two interceptions. One interception by Anthony Henry was returned 58 yards for a touchdown.