The San Diego Chargers dominated both sides of the ball, defeating the Arizona Cardinals 41-10. Undrafted Rookie Max Hall replaced starter Derek Anderson late in the second quarter, making the loss a possible training run for the new offense. The starting quarterback for next Sunday’s home game against the Saints is still undecided.
The change at quarterback came after Derek Anderson threw his second interception, staring down Rookie wide receiver Max Komar and throwing a pick-six to Shaun Philips in the second quarter and giving the Chargers a 28-7 lead.
The Chargers (2-2) outgained the Cards, racking up 419 yards to 124, while running for 180 of those yards and sacking Anderson and Hall a combined nine times.
The Cardinals problems have stretched well beyond the quarterback position and have radiated over the entire team. “If we don’t cut down on our mistakes and cut them down quickly, we are going to have a very disappointing season,” defensive tackle Darnell Dockett said.
The Cardinals had problems covering Charger tight-end Antonio Gates on multiples possessions, they could not stop the run game, and they failed to score any touchdowns with their offensive unit.
Though it may not seem this way to Cardinals fans, their season in far from over. This week will consist of many key decisions by the Cardinals staff that will affect the rest of the season. A little confidence can go a far way and Derek Anderson may be one good game away from getting into rhythm with his teammates. The same could go for Max Hall, but there is never a good time to start a rookie quarterback.
The good news is, there is room for improvement. The Cardinals have a solid defense, led by many veteran players, and have the ability to bounce back immediately. They will be tested by the Saints offense next Sunday. The offensive line must also improve and give whoever their quarterback might be more time to make some plays.
The NFL has had a fairly even first four weeks with only three teams with losing records in the AFC (out of 16 total) and five teams with losing records in the NFC (out of 16 total). Two of those teams are the Dallas Cowboys and the Minnesota Vikings, both pre-season NFC Superbowl hopefuls.
The Arizona Cardinals are tied for first in their division with the St. Louis Rams and the Seattle Seahawks. The San Francisco 49ers are off to an NFL worst 0-4 start. The Cardinals are in the driver seat in the NFC West, but must start to improve immediately.
The Cardinals have the second-worst point differential in the NFL, in front of only the Buffalo Bills, being outscored by their opponents by 60 points thus far. Look for the Cardinals to make changes this week against the Saints. If they don’t, this may very well be the last week the starters from the beginning of the season get a chance to prove themselves.
About the Author
Written by Michael Sundvik
University of Idaho - 2010 - Communications/PR/Advertising Hometown: Boise, ID Current Location: Phoenix, AZ