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Cardinals Still Seek Consistency On Any Given Sunday

White keeps the faith in teammates despite rough record

Linebackers Kyzir White (7) and Josh Woods (10) celebrate a stop during Sunday's game in Seattle.
Linebackers Kyzir White (7) and Josh Woods (10) celebrate a stop during Sunday's game in Seattle.

Kyzir White hasn't missed a snap all season, and he doesn't plan on missing one for the rest of the year. What he did miss was a surefire pick-six on Sunday in the 20-10 loss to the Seahawks.

A day later, and the linebacker still couldn't believe it.

"I've never really dropped things like that, but that's just getting lackadaisical," White said Monday. "I caught that one against the Cowboys, now I think it's automatic but obviously it ain't.

"Now we just got to get back to the drawing board."

White's been one of the more consistent players on the team, yet his drop adds to a long list of frustrating, inconsistent moments this team has hurt themselves with all season long.

The Cardinals won the turnover battle, forcing three turnovers, but it only translated to a total of three points. It's the second week in a row with a special teams takeaway which led to a field goal. Those four-point swings could've changed the direction of the game.

Sunday's game also featured the Cardinals on the wrong end of a bad statistic. Since the 1970 NFL merger, there have been 2,925 games where one team has a turnover margin of plus-3 or better. Those teams win 91.3 percent of the time.

"We've got to go down and score more points when we have those opportunities," quarterback Joshua Dobbs said. "We didn't fight well enough, though, just in our execution, how we started the game, and then ultimately how we finish the drives."

The defense had two big plays that hurt them. Seahawks wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba was wide open for his first career score, and fellow wideout Jake Bobo made a spectacular grab, although coach Jonathan Gannon said the defense had "some technique we've got to clean up on that play,"

"The mentality is bend don't break," White said. "There might be times where we're not playing good as a defense and the offense picks us up and there might be times where the offense maybe is not clicking how it should be and we got to pick them up."

The defense played well enough to win the game. They contained Geno Smith to 219 passing yards, the unit's fewest allowed since Week 1.

It's the Cardinals offensive scoring struggles, especially in the second half, that hasn't allowed for the team to string together a complete 60-minute game.

The Cardinals have been outscored 104-30 in the second half, and have only seven points in the fourth quarter.

"It's the execution of all 11 and all the guys that are playing," Gannon said. "Consistency of our technique and fundamentals, and then making a few more plays here or there. When you look at that game, coulda, woulda, shoulda, that's not the NFL. You're in the high red zone, down a score in the fourth quarter and had a couple of bad plays.

"We're knocking on the door, we just got to maximize our opportunities when we have the chances to."

The optimism, according to White and Gannon, hasn't been lost in the locker room. Gannon pointed out the team's attitude and fight as one of the traits that has remained consistent all season long. White's obviously not pleased with the record, but his trust in his teammates hasn't wavered.

"We still got 10 weeks left for sure, so the season isn't over," White said. "What if we go on a 10-game win streak, then what?"

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