Turnovers prove costly as Arizona Cardinals fall to Minnesota Vikings 34-26
MINNEAPOLIS, MN (3TV/CBS 5) -- A potential catch of the year courtesy of DeAndre Hopkins wasn’t enough to knock off the top NFC North team as turnovers hurt the Arizona Cardinals. The Red Birds couldn’t defeat the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday morning, falling 34-26. The Cardinals are now 3-5, while the Vikings improve to 6-1.
Cardinals had one last chance as time expired but couldn’t pull off the comeback. Murray was sacked on second down, and the Cardinals had one last chance for a Hail Mary. The pocket collapsed as Murray tried to scramble. However, he got tripped up and fell to the ground to end the game.
Turnovers hurt the Cardinals chances in the second half. Kyler Murray threw his second pick of the day after a deep pass intended for Zach Ertz, but Camryn Bynum read the play. Bynum picked off Murray, but the Cardinals defense was able to keep the Vikings from scoring.
A muffed punt was also a costly mistake for the Cardinals late in the game. Greg Dortch couldn’t come down with the catch, and the Vikings recovered it. It was the Cardinals second turnover of the game. Vikings once again capitalized on the Red Birds mistake after Cousins connected with K.J. Osborn in the endzone for a 34-26 lead.
It was a back-and-forth game in the second half. Murray went to Rondale Moore following a 33-yard pickup, and Moore broke three tackles, trotting in for the touchdown. Cardinals cut the lead to 28-23 but missed out on points after a failed two-point conversion. Cardinals defense was able to give the ball right back to the offense though. Isaiah Simmons sacked Cousins, forcing the fumble, and recovered the ball.
The first turnover of the game came with just over 5 minutes in the third. The pocket was collapsing and Murray threw it up deep downfield, but no Cardinals players were in sight. Vikings safety Harrison Smith came down with the pick. Vikings were able to capitalize on the Cardinals mistake. They finished off a short drive with a touchdown run from Dalvin Cook, going ahead 28-17.
Early in the third quarter, Murray went deep down the sideline to Hopkins, setting up the Red Birds at first and goal. Zach Ertz barreled to the pylon for the touchdown, giving the Cardinals their first lead of the game at 17-14. The Vikings weren’t done though. Alexander Mattison rushed in for the touchdown to put the Vikings ahead 21-17, spoiling the Red Birds lead.
The play of the first half for the Cardinals was a spectacular one-handed touchdown catch by DeAndre Hopkins. Murray threw a dart into the endzone, and Hopkins came down with the catch. Cardinals cut the lead to 14-10 just before halftime. Could it be the catch of the year? The touchdown also marked a career milestone for Murray. It was his 100th career touchdown! Cardinals special teams came up big as time expired in the half. Vikings opted for a field goal, but the kick was blocked by Leki Fotu. No good!
Vikings came out with a strong start on the first drive of the game. Cousins went deep to his top receiver, Justin Jefferson, for a 28-yard pickup into Cardinals territory. Cousins decided to show off his wheels, running for a 17-yard touchdown to give the Vikings the first score of the game.
The Cardinals still have yet to score a first quarter touchdown this season. Murray led a good drive downfield, but an incomplete pass to A.J. Green set the Cardinals up for the field goal by Matt Prater, cutting the lead to 7-3. Things got a little tense between the Cardinals bench and former Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson. After a horse collar call, Peterson began jarring with Cardinals players and coaches.
J.J. Watt was playing with a purpose on Sunday’s game. The Pro-Bowler and his soccer star wife, Kealia Ohai-Watt, recently celebrated the birth of their son, Koa James Watt. Watt donned cleats with his son’s name and footprints on it and his wife’s jersey number.
The Cardinals will travel back home to State Farm Stadium to take on the Seattle Seahawks next Sunday at 2:05 p.m. This will be the second matchup between the two teams after the Cardinals lost to the Seahawks 19-9 in Week 6.
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