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Score One - Or Two - For Larry Fitzgerald

Posted Nov 24, 2013

Notebook: Dansby gets his Pick-6; Defense shines; Feely bounces back from block

Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald hauls in the first of his two touchdown catches Sunday against the Colts.

The offensive weapons were numerous in the Cardinals’ 40-11 win on Sunday over the Colts.

Michael Floyd had more than 100 yards receiving. Rob Housler was a key target early. Rashard Mendenhall and Andre Ellington both ran the ball effectively.

When the team moved into scoring range, though, old reliable was still the featured attraction. Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald had five catches for 52 yards in the game, including a pair of touchdowns in the first half, increasing his team-leading total to eight.

Carson Palmer found him for a 4-yard score on the opening drive and on a 26-yard pass for a 14-3 lead early in the second quarter.

“Any time you have Larry 1-on-1 down in the red zone, it’s not a good matchup for the other team,” Palmer said.

Fitzgerald surpassed 11,000 career receiving yards in the game, becoming the youngest player in NFL history (30 years, 85 days) to reach the milestone. Randy Moss (30 years, 222 days) previously held the record. Fitzgerald said he’s happy about the touchdown uptick from 2012 and his latest accomplishment, but is more concerned about the team’s record.

“It feels much better to be 7-4,” Fitzgerald said. “That’s really what it’s about for me at this point in my career, 10 years in. The numbers are great, but to be doing it and winning, that makes it that much more special.”

DANSBY GETS HIS PICK

There have been a few instances this season where linebacker Karlos Dansby has dropped surefire interceptions. He was intent on changing that, borrowing a pair of gloves from Fitzgerald and putting in extra work catching footballs.

It paid off in the second quarter, when a heavily-pressured Andrew Luck threw a ball intended for Coby Fleener which Dansby nabbed and returned 22 yards for a score. The touchdown gave the Cardinals a 24-3 lead midway through the second quarter. It was Dansby’s second interception of the year.

“I put a lot of work in,” Dansby said. “I missed a few early in the season. When everything is on the line, I came through today. (Luck) had a lot of pressure on him. He threw the ball up and I ran through it.”

“That was a huge one,” coach Bruce Arians said. “Big momentum swing.”

DEFENSE SHINES AGAIN IN WIN

Add the Colts to the ever-increasing list of offenses shut down by the Cardinals.

Indianapolis is in the top-10 in the NFL in scoring but managed just three points through the first three quarters as the Cardinals jumped out to a 31-point lead. Luck finished the game 20-of-39 for 163 yards with a touchdown and the interception.

The Cardinals entered the game second in the NFL in rush defense, allowing 81.4 yards per game, and gave up only 16 rushing yards through the first three quarters and 80 for the game.

 “I thought we had a great week of preparation this week,” cornerback Patrick Peterson said. “We were flying around, guys were communicating well, and I just thought we were well-prepared for this game. We kind of knew what these guys wanted to do in certain situations.”

FEELY BLOCKED BUT BOUNCES BACK

Kicker Jay Feely had his streak of 17 straight successful field goals snapped in the first quarter when his 28-yard attempt was blocked by Sergio Brown.  The last time he was blocked came on Oct. 14, 2012 on a 38-yard attempt against the Bills.

The Cardinals led 7-0 when the chip-shot was deflected, and the Colts would kick a field goal on their ensuing possession to cut the deficit to four points. However, the flub didn’t end up mattering because the Cardinals dominated the rest of the way.

“The operation was great,” Feely said. “I think Eric (Winston) said they were grabbing his outside arm and holding it through the gap. It’s unfortunate. I’m glad it didn’t cost us anything.”

Feely rebounded with successful field goals from 48, 50, 21 and 25 yards. He is now 22-of-24 on the season.


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