What We Learned: Cardinals Defeat Vikings

Kurt Warner (Getty)

The Arizona Cardinals took not only a 30-17 win over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday night but a lot of lessons from their home victory as well. What exactly did we learn from the Cardinals pouncing of the Vikings? Let's begin with these five observations...

1. Change is a good thing...

The Arizona Cardinals feature an offensive line that has started the same five players in 27-straight games. But the injury to left tackle Mike Gandy put Jeremy Bridges in the game and snapped the streak that was tied with the NY Jets as the longest in the NFL.

With Bridges in the game, the Cardinals big guys up front boasted one of their best games ever. Kurt Warner walked out of the game sack-free and pick-free.

Arizona certainly had its work cut out for it as it hosted the highest grossing sack team in the NFL.

Bridges did his part. He quieted Vikings defensive end Jared Allen, keeping one of the NFL's best to zero tackles and zero sacks. Keeping Allen out of the box score in his first start-ever start at left tackle is worthy of a shot of pressuring Gandy for the starting role. Gandy has had his fair share of struggles this season.

Adrian Peterson; Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie
Getty

The Cardinals offensive line also helped the Cardinals ground game surpass the 100-plus mark.

2. Bill Davis' run defense is legit...

The Cardinals run defense started as one of the top in the NFL. This ranking slipped further and further as the Cardinals worked through their schedule. The Cardinals allowed Chris Johnson to rush for 154 yards but kept Adrian Peterson in check the following week. The Cardinals held the VIkings to 62 rushing yards and Peterson to just 19 yards on 13 carries. The dismal per carry average is a far cry from Peterson's 4.7 that he entered the game with. Furthermore, he averaged 98.5 yards a game prior to visiting the desert.

One of the most impressive stats is that seven of Peterson's attempts were held to no gain or for a loss.

3. Cardinals knew Brett Favre's number...

Favre entered Sunday night's matchup with just three interceptions all season. The Cardinals nearly doubled that number, picking off the veteran twice. Arizona also reached the pocket, sacking Favre three times.

4. Dansby reaches milestone....

Karlos Dansby may have one foot out of the desert, but he continues to put in the work for the Cardinals. He recorded eight tackles on Sunday, which marks 600 on his career. Dasby also registered an interception, his first of the season.

5. Rackers deserves a high-five...

Neil Rackers played through a groin injury on Sunday night. He sent three field goals through the uprights, which is a season-high for him. Rackers has made 15 out of 16 field goal attempts this season. His field goal percentage is third in the NFL.


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