Arizona Steamrollers Buffalo Bills, 41-17

By PFC Cardinals Writer Laura Healy

“Steamroller— n 1: a massive inexorable force that seems to crush everything in its way.” Last week I I guaranteed a win for the Cardinals over the Buffalo Bills. When the clock hit 00:00 on Sunday Arizona had won 41-17. The game was never close. Trent Edwards found out about steamroller first hand when Adrian Wilson ran into the backfield and hit him. Edwards went down and left with a concussion. Later, Edwards said Wilson’s hit was clean. Wilson’s hit on Edwards reinforced the defense showed up to play. JP Losman came in at quarterback for the Bills. Not long ago, he was the starter.

I have included a photograph of the hit, because the NFL incorrectly fined Wilson $25,000.

Arizona’s defense had a bitter taste in their mouths from the 56 points they gave up against the Jets. The defense forced four turnovers. The only breakdown was rookie Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie biting on a double move by Bill’s WR Lee Evans for an 87-yard TD pass. The rest of the day they swarmed the Bills and rendered their offense moot. That was the defense everyone expected from the beginning of the failed to mount any attempt at a comeback. There is something visceral about watching a football game and knowing half way through the first quarter your team will win.

On offense, they made adjustments requiring Kurt Warner to take a three-step drop and get rid of the ball, or started in the shotgun. This took most of the pressure off the offensive line and they responded. Plus, the Cardinals played without Anquan Boldin, so they didn’t go deep at any point. But that’s all right nine different players catch passes from Warner. It took a few weeks, but starting with the loss to the Jets, Arizona finally involved talented receivers other than Boldin and Larry Fitzgerald. Warner threw 42 times, right around the 35-40 times per game that he should throw. That opened up the running game, and the RB’s gained 123 yards. More importantly, Dirk Johnson rarely punted.

After the game, Warner mentioned the injury to his throwing hand in the context of holding onto the football with his kids pretending they were the Bills. I was right when I mentioned last week that Warner had hit his hand on a defender’s helmet. This caused him to revert back to the way he held the football in the past. Warner did not mention it, nor did he excuse himself for the fumbles against the Jets. In fact, he only mentioned it because of the story he shared about his family. Coach Whisenhut mentioned that Warner had one of the fingers on his hand swollen, and he re-injured it. This time it didn’t seem to be as bad or a problem.

Now, the Cardinals prepare to host the Dallas Cowboys this Sunday. Boldin won’t play. But with injuries in the Cowboys defensive backfield, the Cardinals should be able to go deep. The offense will score and do it often. The only question is which defense will show up? I’m hoping for the “steamroller”.  Tony Romo may be a good quarterback, but he does turn it over, both interceptions and fumbles. Still, I am excited because of Coach Whisenhut stressing winning at home since he arrived in the desert. I think the crowd will be raucous. But unlike the past, they will definitely be for the Cardinals. Can I guarantee a win like I did last week? No. But I can guarantee it will be a fun game to watch. If I were a sports broadcaster, this would be my pick for an upset special.