The Arizona Cardinals could not stop the Los Angeles Rams electric offense as they were blown out 37-14 at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on Nov. 26.
Coming into the game, the Cardinals avoided an injury scare with wide receiver Marquise Brown (heel) being activated to their roster right before they played today.
Since the return of quarterback Kyler Murray two weeks ago, the Cardinals won 25-23 over the Atlanta Falcons on Nov. 12 and lost only 21-16 to the Houston Texans on Nov. 19.
Arizona has been competitive in the last two games and were returning to the valley to face a NFC West foe in the Rams.
Los Angeles was able to squeak out a 17-16 victory last Sunday against the Seattle Rams after a field goal went through the uprights with just 1:31 left in the game.
With the chance to make the playoffs looking very bleak at this point, the Cardinals went into the game to give their fans a respectable performance.
That is not what happened.
Getting the first possession of the game, LA were lightning quick with getting on the board.
LA quarterback Matthew Stafford constructed a few plays before launched a 42-yard pass to wide receiver Tutu Atwell at the ARZ 31.
Quickly, Stafford tossed the ball to Higbee for a 7-yard touchdown before kicker Lucas Havrisik converted the extra-point to hand LA a 7-0 lead with 11:18 remaining in the first quarter.
However, the Cardinals would respond on their first drive of the game.
Lined up in a shotgun formation, Murray gave Arizona wide receiver Marquise Brown a short pass for a gain of 17 yards.
On 2nd down and 10 at the LAR 18, Arizona running back James Conner slithered his way for another 14-yard rush.
Following two plays of no gain, Murray ran towards the end-zone to score a touchdown with 4:50 left in the quarter.
However, due to an illegal formation penalty by LA defensive end Kobie Turner, Arizona accepted the penalty and went for a two-point conversion.
Coming off the bench, Cardinals backup quarterback Clayton Tune entered the game and fought through multiple Rams defenders to complete the conversion to make it 8-7 Arizona.
LA running back Royce Freeman brushed his way to a 14-yard rushing attempt as he got through the middle of the Cardinals defense.
Furthermore, Atwell caught a pass by Stafford for 13 yards to the ARZ 21.
Close to scoring again, Stafford targeted Higbee as the tight end caught a 5-yard pass to get his second TD of the game with 9:57 remaining in the first half.
Havrisik extra-point kick was good to add to their advantage, 14-8 Rams.
Arizona’s next drive was uneventful as they were forced to punt soon after.
But, the Rams also weren’t get anything going on their second one before Havrisik attempted a 50-yard field-goal attempt, but missed.
Stafford connected with Atwell once more, this time for 21 yards to the ARZ 15.
Towards the end of the half, Rams running back Kyren Williams caught a 15-yard pass by Stafford for another touchdown to extend their lead to 21-8.
With just 0:15 left in the second quarter, Arizona safety Jalen Thompson intercepted a pass by Stafford.
Besides the rushing TD by Murray and a few double-digit yard passes, the Cardinals offense continued to struggle.
Despite being on fourth down, a rare occurrence happened.
In a punting formation, Arizona punter Blake Gillikin snapped the ball as if he was going to do his normal job.
Instead, Gillikin faked it as he ran for 10 yards to give the Cardinals a 1st down.
Unfortunately for Gillikin, his team was not able to do anything after he continued the drive.
Williams continued to give Arizona’s defense problems as he would run through midfield for 56 yards to the ARZ 21.
After missing his first attempt, Havrisik was set up for a simple, 24-yard field goal and nailed it to construct a 24-8 score with 7:33 left in the third quarter.
Going the other way, a few passes by Murray to McBride did not amount to much before Cardinals kicker Matt Prater tried to make a 56-yard field goal.
Kicking the ball, Prater’s attempt was way off with 5:03 remaining in the third.
Fourth Quarter and Recap
At the end of a 13-play drive, Williams matched Higbee with two touchdowns each as Williams received a 3-yard pass from Stafford so the Rams would begin to blowout the Cardinals, 31-8.
Adding insult to injury, Arizona’s defense would try to tackle Freeman twice, but the Rams running back broke through and scored yet another touchdown as the game got even uglier, 37-8 Rams with 8:19 left in the game.
Havrisik missed the extra-point chance, but the game was over pretty much by then.
In garbage time, Cardinals wide receiver Greg Dortch made a one-handed catch with LA cornerback Tre Tomlinson guarding him to make it 37-14 with 5:12 remaining.
Arizona went for another two-point conversion, but this time it was unsuccessful as the game slowly came to an end.
To conclude, the Cardinals’ defense and offense stood almost no chance throughout the game with huge performances from Stafford, Williams and Higbee.
Stafford was 25-33, threw four touchdown passes, an interception and collected 229 yards.
Additionally, Williams rushed for 143 yards on 16 carries and had two receiving touchdowns.
Only having 5 catches for 29 yards, Higbee was able to score twice as well.
As for Murray, he was 24-45 and threw for 245 yards with a TD.
Overall, LA amassed 452 yards while Arizona had 292.
Now, the Cardinals fall to 2-10 on the season and remain fourth place in the NFC West.
Next up, Arizona heads to Pittsburgh to clash with the Steelers (7-4) at Acrisure Stadium on Dec. 3 at 11 a.m.