The Arizona Cardinals could not avoid mistake or the big play in Glendale. They allowed a 95-yard touchdown pass to Mike Wallace, were penalized 10 times and got hit with a safety. They were able to pull within three points twice, but the Pittsburgh Steelers pulled away and beat Kevin Kolb and the Cardinals 32-20.
The game started inauspiciously as the Cardinals' first drive ended in a Kevin Kolb interception off a pass that hit Robert Housler and bounced in to the hands of the waiting Ryan Clark. The Steelers then took five plays to score a touchdown, as either Clark Haggans or Adrian Wilson messed up the coverage, allowing Heath Miller free to score a touchdown from 12 yards out.
The rest of the first quarter consisted of exchanged punts.
After another two punts by the Cardinals and one by the Steelers, the Steelers started their next drive at their own five-yard line after a penalty. That is where the biggest play of the game happened. Ben Roethlisberger then hit Mike Wallace over Patrick Peterson, who then raced to the endzone for a 95-yard score, the longest in Steelers history.
The next drive for the Cardinals was as good a drive as we have seen this season. They marched down the field in 13 plays for 80 yards and scored a touchdown on a one-yard run by Alfonso Smith. Smith was in the game because Beanie Wells left with a sprained right knee. He did not return. It was the first career touchdown for Smith.
That drive gave the Cardinals a little momentum, but they allowed the Steelers to march down the field and kick a field goal. The Arizona defense was flagged for three penalties during the drive. Pittsburgh led 17-7 at halftime.
Arizona pulled with three points again, 17-14, as Kevin Kolb hit LaRod Stephens-Howling on a 73-yard catch and run for a touchdown. It was the perfect mix of pass protection by the offensive line, pocket awareness by Kolb and route running by LSH.
After that, nothing really went right. the Steelers drove 80 yards to go ahead 24-14. Then Kevin Kolb was flagged for intentional grounding in the end zone for a Pittsburgh safety after LaMar Woodley was left unblocked. Had Kolb not been penalized, the result woudl have been a sack with the same result. 26-14 Steelers.
Pittsburgh's Shane Suisham kicked a pair of field goals to extend the lead to 32-14, and the Kevin Kolb hit Early Doucet for a TD in what was essentially garbage time.
Kolb finished the game 18/34 for 272 yards, two TDs and one interception. Beanie Wells before leaving rushed 12 times for 42 yards. Early Doucet had five catches for 30 yards and a score. Larry Fitzgerald caught four for 78 yards.
For Pittsburgh, Ben Roethlisberger threw for 340 yards and three TDs. Both Antonio Brown and Mike Wallace had over 100 yards receiving. Rashard Mendenhall was held to 32 yards rushing on 13 carries.
Both teams played sloppily with penalties. Arizona was penalized 10 times for 88 yards, while Pittsburgh was flagged nine times.
The loss is the fifth straight for the Cardinals, who now are four games behind the division leading San Francisco 49ers. They go on the road to play the Baltimore ravens next week.