In the end, it was another loss. The Arizona Cardinals could not come up with enough offense to defeat the Minnesota Vikings, falling 21-14. There was a pick-6, a missed field goal and a spectacular defensive effort. Here is the good and the bad from Arizona in Week 7
The defensive effort:
Minnesota was held to 209 total yards. They sacked Christian Ponder three times and intercepted him twice. They gave up only 14 points. Ponder threw for only 58 yards. Percy Harvin was held to only 47 offensive yards. Adrian Peterson did run for 153 yards, but you can't get too upset looking at the whole defensive effort. If a team allows only 200 yards and 14 points, that team should win 100 percent of the time.
LaRod Stephens-Howling had a career day:
After looking rusty against the Bills, the Hyphen went off. He carried the ball 20 times for 104 yards. He caught four passes for 45 yards. He scored a touchdown. It was the type of performance that makes me think he is capable of handling a starter's load.
Daryl Washington's domination:
The linebacker picked up another two sacks. He has six on the season, and he does not primarily rush the passer. He also had another nine tackles. You will be hard-pressed to find a more productive defensive player.
The offense just can't seem to put up points:
If you look at the individual numbers, you would think that they did all right. LSH rushed for over 100 yards. Andre Roberts had over 100 yards receiving. John Skelton threw for 262 yards. The problem? Only 14 points.
The offensive line is still consistently getting beat:
Skelton was sacked seven times. So much for the theory that the line blocks better for him rather than for Kevin Kolb. After only allowing five sacks in the first three games combined, the line has not given up less than five sacks in any single game. Both Kolb and Skelton have gone down with injury. Peter King might not be crazy now thinking that Ryan Lindley could be starting this season.
Missed opportunities and bad decisions:
Jay Feely missed another field goal and has not hit one since making the 61-yarder. John Skelton threw a pick-six. Turn those plays around and Arizona has a 17-14 win. With the defensive effort the team gets week after week, these are mistakes that the offense can't afford.
Can the Cardinals recover? Most certainly. They are one or two plays per game away from 6-1 or even 7-0. Last season they came around. Now is the time to do it again.