"It was a bad night for the offense. And that's putting it in kind terms. QB Kevin Kolb went 28 for 50 for 289 yards, 0 TD's, and 0 INT's. Larry Fitzgerald led all receivers for the Cardinals with 8 receptions for 92 yards. But what was an even bigger story (And not in a good way) for the Cardinals was the atrocious play of the Offensive Line. Kolb was sacked a total of 9 times, totaling in a loss of 52 yards. Linemen Bobby Massie and D'Anthony Batiste were abused all night. This affected the run-game as well, as RB Ryan Williams was only able to garner 33 yards off 14 rushes. Overall, it was a game that the Cardinals offense should probably forget really fast."
With the loss, the Cardinals fell to 4-1 and the Rams improved to 3-2. Arizona hosts the Buffalo Bills next Sunday at 4:05 p.m.
The Arizona Cardinals encountered something Thursday night for the first time in the 2012-2013 season: a loss. Here's the positives and negatives the team can take from this devastating loss to the St. Louis Rams.
Both teams scored on their first possession and it looked for a moment like the game might be headed for an offensive shootout, but the defenses have dominated since. Just three points have been scored following the teams' first possessions with neither team scoring in the third quarter.
Kevin Kolb has thrown for 179 yards, but has faced nearly constant pressure. Kolb has been sacked seven times and hit nine times. Arizona has been unable to slow down the pass rush with any kind of a running game. Ryan Williams has just 21 rushing yards on 13 carries while the Cardinals are averaging 2.1 yards per carry as a team.
While the offense has struggled, the defense has been stout. After completing 3-of-4 passes to start the game, Rams quarterback Sam Bradford is just 6-of-20 for 90 yards through three quarters. The Rams appeared to be in position to add some points but Patrick Peterson intercepted Bradford in the endzone.
Both teams scored on their opening possession, but the offenses have been somewhat stagnant since. Arizona had a chance to cut the lead to 10-6, but Jay Feely missed a 40-yard field goal attempt. The Cardinals have dominated time of possession leading 19:44 to 10:16 but hold just a 151 to 100 advantage in total yards.
After completing 7-of-10 passes in the first quarter, Kevin Kolb completed just 7-of-17 passes in the second quarter. Larry Fitzgerald and Andre Roberts combined for six catches in the first half, but were held without a catch during the second quarter. Instead, Rob Housler leads the Cardinals in receiving with three catches for 45 yards. The Cardinals have been unable to get much of a running game going with Ryan Williams gaining just 30 yards on nine carries.
Following the first touchdown drive, the Arizona defense has done a good job of limiting the Rams. St. Louis racked up 69 yards on their first drive but have just 31 since. Arizona will receive the ball to begin the second half.
The St. Louis Rams lead the Arizona Cardinals 7-3 after the first quarter of Thursday's game. The Rams jumped out to an early 7-0 lead, but Arizona came back with a field goal on its first drive.
St. Louis needed just five plays to get in the endzone with Sam Bradford hitting Lance Kendricks for a seven-yard touchdown. Bradford completed 3-of-4 passes on the drive, including a 44-yard completion to Danny Amendola. The drive took just over two minutes, putting the Cardinals in an early hole.
Arizona was able to come back with a field goal as part of a 17-play drive that took over nine minutes of the first quarter. Kevin Kolb is off to a good start for Arizona, completing 7-of-10 passes in the quarter. He has targeted Larry Fitzgerald and Andre Roberts on seven pass attemps with both players finishing the first quarter with three receptions.
With the long drive, Arizona dominated time of possession in the first quarter, 11:06 to 3:54. The Cardinals will begin the second quarter with a 3rd and 6 from the St. Louis 48-yardline.
Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Darnell Dockett is active and will be back in the lineup Thursday against the Rams. Dockett was forced out of action last week with a hamstring injury, the first game he's missed since Week 10 of the 2010 season.
While the Cardinals defense will get a boost with the return of Dockett, the offense will once again be without tight end Todd Heap. Heap played well in Arizona's first two games but will miss his third straight game with a knee injury. Heap was only a limited participant in practice this week and was listed as questionable.
Arizona will also be without running back and return man LaRod Stephens-Howling. Stephens-Howling will miss his second straight game with a hip injury. Without him, William Powell will likely take over the kick return duties. Quarterback John Skelton remains out with an ankle injury and will be inactive for the third straight week.
The complete list of inactives for Arizona and St. Louis can be found below.
John Skelton is not 100 percent healthy and linebacker Quentin Groves was the only player completely out of practice Wednesday for the Arizona Cardinals. Darnell Dockett, LaRod Stephens-Howling and Todd Heap were all limited.
The Arizona Cardinals will look to stay undefeated when they travel to St. Louis on Thursday night as part of Week 5 of the 2012 NFL schedule. The Cardinals are coming off an overtime win against Miami, while the Rams held off the Seahawks and are now 2-2. The two will face off at 6:20 p.m. MT on NFL Network.
Elsewhere around the NFC West, the Seahawks make a cross-country trip to visit the Carolina Panthers at 2:05 p.m. Sunday on FOX. Seattle is likely feeling fortunate that the game was not scheduled in the typical early start for East Coast teams, as it has historically struggled at that time.
The 49ers will try to keep pace with the Cardinals when they host the Bills on Sunday at Candlestick Park. San Francisco is 3-1 and trails Arizona by one game in the division. That game kicks off at 2:25 p.m. on CBS.
The big question is: Will the starting job still be available now that the Cardinals are 4-0 without him?
Skelton was named the starting quarterback during the preseason after Kevin Kolb struggled in one of his starts, and Skelton came in and performed better. Skelton got the start in Game 1 of the regular season, but didn't have a great opener, completing 14 of 28 passes for 149 yards and an interception. He then suffered a right ankle sprain that forced him out of the game.
Kolb has come in and performed quite well. He's completed over 62% of his passes and averaged about seven yards per pass attempt while throwing seven touchdowns and two interceptions.