2014 DRAFT GUIDE
5 things to know after Cardinals roll Rams 30-10

By BOB BAUM - AP Sports Writer
    2013-12-09 02:32

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) - Maybe this practice stuff is overrated.

Carson Palmer was not allowed to throw a pass once in workouts last week, then turned in a near-perfect performance.

The Arizona quarterback completed 27 of 32 passes, the second-best completion percentage in Cardinals history, in a 30-10 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Sunday.

''(Trainer) Tom Reed and his staff, they are the best in the business,'' Palmer said. ''He had a plan from Monday on, and he stuck to it. I had 100 percent faith and trust in him that he knew what he was doing and that he and his staff would have me ready to play.''

Boy, did they ever.

Palmer's 84.4 percent completion rate is second only in franchise history to Kurt Warner's NFL record 24 of 26 (92.3) percent. The Rams' vaunted pass rush sacked him just once.

Larry Fitzgerald caught 12 passes for 96 yards and a touchdown.

The Cardinals (8-5) also scored twice on defense, when Karlos Dansby returned an interception 23 yards for a score and John Abraham tackled Kellen Clemens for a safety.

''Obviously they're a much better team than they were last year,'' Rams linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar said. ''They have a really good coach. They bought into the system, and they're playing effectively.''

Here are five things learned from Arizona's dominant victory:

RAMS NEED TO RUN: When the Rams can't move the ball on the ground, they are in trouble.

When quarterback Sam Bradford went down with a season-ending knee injury, St. Louis shifted to a run-oriented offense.

But take away Tavon Austin's 56-yard run, which set up St. Louis' lone touchdown, and the Rams managed just 44 yards in 18 carries. Zac Stacy had just 25 yards in 14 tries.

The Cardinals have one of the best run defenses in the league, and once the Rams' ground game was stifled, the team could zero in on Clemens.

''Once you shut down the run against a team like St. Louis that is built on running the football, the frenzy can feed,'' Arizona coach Bruce Arians said.

ABRAHAM'S BIG DAY: Abraham had three sacks, giving him 11 for the season.

The 14-year NFL veteran has 133 sacks, moving him past Lawrence Taylor and Leslie O'Neal to ninth on the career list.

''Now I am trying to walk down (Michael) Strahan at five. He has 141.5,'' Abraham said. ''It's good to get a personal goal, but it's even better to get a win, and how we played today on both sides of the ball and special teams showed what kind of team we can be. That's what impressed me the most.''

HONEY BADGER HURT: Rookie Tyrann Mathieu's sensational season may have come to an end with a left knee injury that Arians says appeared to be a torn ACL.

Mathieu was hurt when he returned the free kick following Arizona's safety in the third quarter. He was buried in a pile of tacklers, then got up and jogged toward the sideline.

But his knee buckled and he collapsed to the ground. Getting consolation from teammates, he sat with his helmet off and waited for the cart to be brought, then road it off the field.

Arians said he thought Mathieu's play this far had made him ''a lock'' to be NFL defensive rookie of the year.

''I think no one else has played as much as he's played, and all the positions he's played,'' Arians said.

The coach said he wished the Rams had kicked the ball to Peterson.

FITGERALD WAS PROLIFIC: Fitzgerald hadn't caught this many passes in a game since he matched his career best with 13 against Seattle on Oct. 18, 2009.

Arians said there was no special plan to throw to Fitgerald.

''We throw it where they will let us throw it,'' Arians said. ''Carson was spot on it.''

Fitzgerald has 10 touchdown catches this season, becoming the ninth player in NFL history with five seasons of double-digit TD receptions.

RAMS ARE DONE: With the loss, St. Louis officially is out of playoff contention and almost certainly is headed for a last place in the NFC West.

It's a season that never really had a chance after Bradford was hurt.

''I think the thing we want to see now is finish the season strong,'' Clemens said. ''We want to see improvement. We'll get back to work. We're eliminated, but we still have to play them.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Dane FletcherMay 27 02:33a

Free-agent LB Dane Fletcher (Buccaneers) has returned to the New England Patriots on a one-year contract.

Devonta FreemanMay 26 09:53p

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman worked with the first-team offense during organized team activities Tuesday, May 26.

Charles SimsMay 26 05:33p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Charles Sims has a solid chance of beating out RB Doug Martin for Tampa Bay's starting running back gig, according to Pat Yasinskas of ESPN.com.

A.J. JenkinsMay 26 01:02p

Free-agent WR A.J. Jenkins (Chiefs) signed an undisclosed deal with the Dallas Cowboys Tuesday, May 26, according to a source. Jenkins was the 30th overall pick by the San [ More ]

Adrian PetersonMay 26 08:43a

Updating an ongoing story, the Dallas Cowboys have moved on from the idea of trading for Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson, despite persistent rumors, according to The Dallas Morning [ More ]

A.J. McCarronMay 25 10:37p

Cincinnati Bengals QB AJ McCarron (shoulder) is healthy and hoping to push QB Andy Dalton in 2015. 'We wanted him in our building so bad and it happened and [ More ]

Ray McDonaldMay 25 04:42p

Updating previous reports, Chicago Bears DE Ray McDonald has been released Monday, May 25, just hours after being arrested for alleged domestic violence and child endangerment.

Adrian PetersonMay 25 02:42p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson still wants to be traded, according to a source. Peterson intends to skip all organized team activities, which would cause him to lose $250,000 in workout bonuses.

Adrian PetersonMay 24 09:22p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson has informed head coach Mike Zimmer that he will not attend the optional practices that begin Tuesday, May 26, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.

Tom BradyMay 22 04:32p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady will have the appeal of his four-game suspension heard by commissioner Roger Goodell after the NFL rejected a motion by the NFL Players [ More ]

Tom BradyMay 22 03:32p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady's appeal of his four-game suspension has not been scheduled at this time.

Ray RiceMay 22 11:42a

Free-agent RB Ray Rice (Ravens) could be a consideration for the Dallas Cowboys in free agency, speculates The Dallas Morning News' Jon Machota. He cites Cowboys owner and general [ More ]

Adrian PetersonMay 22 09:52a

Updating an ongoing story, Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson remains in pursuit of being traded or receiving a new contract and remains away from the organization during voluntary workouts. [ More ]

William BeattyMay 21 12:02p

Updating previous reports, New York Giants OT William Beatty (chest) underwent successful surgery Thursday, May 21, to repair a torn pectoral muscle. Beatty will need approximately five to six months of recovery time.

Derek CarrMay 20 10:23p

Oakland Raiders QB Derek Carr (finger) will not need surgery on his injured finger and may be able to throw again before the end of offseason workouts, according to his agent.

Joseph RandleMay 20 09:23p

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle is the most likely option to lead the team's running back by committee approach in 2015. Randle has the most experience in the system, [ More ]

William BeattyMay 20 03:53p

Updating previous reports, New York Giants OT William Beatty's (pectoral) torn pectoral will require surgery and Beatty's recovery time is expected to be around five months. Beatty suffered the [ More ]

William BeattyMay 20 03:33p

Updating a previous report, New York Giants OT William Beatty (shoulder) tore his pectoral while lifting weights Wednesday, May 20, according to a source, and will undergo surgery. One [ More ]

Josh HillMay 20 03:23p

New Orleans Saints TE Josh Hill is slated as the starting tight end this season with TE Jimmy Graham now in Seattle. TE Benjamin Watson could give Hill a run for his money, however.

William BeattyMay 20 03:13p

New York Giants OT William Beatty (shoulder) suffered a potentially serious shoulder injury while lifting weights Wednesday, May 20, according to a source. Surgery is a possibility.

Geno SmithMay 20 03:03p

New York Jets QB Geno Smith is the starting quarterback and will not see competition in training camp, according to offensive coordinator Chan Gailey.

Tom BradyMay 20 03:03p

Updating previous reports, New England Patriots QB Tom Brady's appeal will not be affected by the team's decision to accept their sanctions. Commissioner Roger Goodell said he wants to [ More ]

Matt JonesMay 20 02:15p

Washington Redskins RB Matt Jones said that he loves the offense and has a chip on his shoulder after not being used properly while in college. 'My college career [ More ]

Derek CarrMay 20 08:53a

Updating a previous report, Oakland Raiders QB Derek Carr (finger) is experiencing numbness in his right ring finger. He hopes to avoid surgery through rest and rehab, and no [ More ]

Derek CarrMay 19 06:13p

Oakland Raiders QB Derek Carr (finger) has a right ring finger injury that could be surgically repaired. A return for training camp is still achievable, however, according to a source.

L. WashingtonMay 19 05:23p

Pittsburgh Steelers WR L'Damian Washington (undisclosed) was waived/injured Tuesday, May 19.

Shayne GrahamMay 19 03:03p

New Orleans Saints PK Shayne Graham was released Tuesday, May 19. Subsequently, free-agent WR Lance Lewis (49ers) was signed.

Joseph BarksdaleMay 19 02:23p

Free-agent OT Joseph Barksdale (Rams) will sign a one-year deal worth $350,000 with the San Diego Chargers, according to a source. The deal also comes with more than $1 million in incentives available.

Tom BradyMay 19 01:43p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady will continue to appeal his four-game suspension, despite owner Robert Kraft saying the team will not appeal the discipline levied against them.

Jed CollinsMay 18 03:32p

Dallas Cowboys FB Jed Collins was released Monday, May 18, and FB Tyler Clutts was re-signed to an undisclosed contract.

Tyler CluttsMay 18 03:32p

Dallas Cowboys FB Jed Collins was released Monday, May 18, and FB Tyler Clutts was re-signed to an undisclosed contract.

Lache SeastrunkMay 18 02:42p

Tennessee Titans RB Lache Seastrunk was released Monday, May 18.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group