Eno Benjamin had the best game of his career against the Saints. His 45-yard run in the first half gained more than his previous high total for a game (39). Benjamin ran for 92 yards and a touchdown, along with four catches for 21 yards.
The Arizona State product looked very good. But coach Kliff Kingsbury quickly shut down any talk about Benjamin potentially being the No. 1 back when James Conner returned from his ribs injury.
"James is our starting running back," Kingsbury said.
But, Kingsbury added, "I've been really proud of Eno. He was getting touches when James was healthy and he'll continue to get touches."
Benjamin isn't as big as Conner, or Keaontay Ingram (who also looked solid at times Thursday). But Eno is a tough dude, and showed that multiple times against the Saints. For whatever issues he had earlier in his career, the Cardinals have to be happy they have him.
-- Kyler Murray and Kliff Kingsbury have had their share of flareups during games caught on camera. It happened again Thursday, when the quarterback, after a timeout had to be used as the Cardinals closed in for a touchdown, took exception to Kingsbury taking exception to having to use the timeout.
Murray was caught telling Kingsbury to calm down – except it didn't take an expert lip reader to realize Kyler was adding a naughty adjective in there.
"He said I didn't look good on TV acting that fiery, so he said," Kingsbury said. "I don't know. I guess it's a Gen Z thing. 'You're on TV so calm down.' I like showing emotion."
Said Murray, "Sometimes he's real animated on the sideline. It's just 'Calm down, we're good. We're going to make it right.' We ended up scoring."
Murray said it isn't Kingsbury talking in the headset. "I just see the antics" on the sideline. Kingsbury downplayed it as both being competitors. So too did DeAndre Hopkins, who was playing the role of peacemaker.
"Both of those guys want to win," Hopkins said. "I love to see that. I love being a part of a tam where two people are that dedicated and that focused on winning.
"Obviously you're going to butt heads (sometimes.) I'm not married, but from what I hear, that's a marriage."
-- Kingsbury said it had to do with the game, but after Rondale Moore was listed as a co-starter with A.J. Green at one of the receiver spots on the depth chart earlier this week, Green was a DNP. He was in uniform, but never had his helmet all night – a sign that, barring injury, he wasn't going to play. Greg Dortch played his most snaps since being displaced when Moore came back from injury. We will see what happens, but with Robbie Anderson and Dortch, it's fair to wonder how much more playing time Green will be getting.
-- Yeah, having Hopkins back is a big, big deal.
-- Rodrigo Blankenship's first kickoff sailed through the end zone, and his first kick was a made 50-yard field goal, and that alone made everyone who had followed the Cardinals' kicking journey the last couple of weeks happy.
"It was nice to make a big kick early in the game," Blankenship said. "I'm just doing what I can to help this team win for as long as they are going to have me. If it's a 50-yarder, it's a 50-yarder."
Blankenship said on his missed extra point, he rushed his pre-kick prep. He saw the play clock at 20 and didn't realize it was being held there for a moment. "I didn't want to cut it close and it wasn't as precise as it should've been," he said. "When we got back to the sideline, Andy (Lee) told me they had held the play clock, and obviously I didn't know that at the time."
-- Tackle D.J. Humphries missed some snaps near the end of the game. It looked like he had done something to his back at one point, although he played some after that. Max Garcia, the left guard playing in place of Justin Pugh, also left with a shoulder injury.
-- Speaking of injuries, defensive lineman Rashard Lawrence, who can't catch a break, also hurt his shoulder.
-- The Cardinals are now 8-0 all-time in games in which DeAndre Hopkins and J.J. Watt both play.
-- It wasn't the kind of defensive performance the Cardinals will want but winning the turnover battle 3-0 will shift most games.
"You see all the stats about turnover margin, pick-6s, what it means for a defense," defensive lineman Zach Allen said. "We proved to ourselves we can do it and you want to do that every game."
That's enough for tonight.