When the Cardinals came up to Seattle in 2015 for that memorable Sunday night game against the Seahawks, there were so many storylines when it was over – yes, I'm going with the Drew Stanton sideline dance for No. 1 – and you thought, after the way the two teams played in Arizona last month, that Thursday night could be fun as well.
Not so much.
I mean, if you are the Seahawks, you're thrilled, running for 165 yards and finally taking some pressure off Russell Wilson, who finally looked like Russell Wilson again after a month of issues. But the Cardinals are going to stew about this one. The penalties especially, plays that often lead directly to points. Crushing.
But it was other things too. The Cardinals only had 314 yards, 111 below their season average and 134 below what the Seahawks give up on average. I didn't see that coming, nor the 57 yards rushing when the Cards had been around 168 per game. Throw in the 110 penalty yards, and that's bad math if you're looking to equal a victory.
The Cards now have to regroup. A long trip out to New England, with who knows what kind of weather on Thanksgiving weekend. But there was an opportunity missed Thursday night to make something memorable happen.
-- Kyler Murray said he was fine after an early hit by Seahawks defensive end Carlos Dunlap seemed to hurt his throwing shoulder. But it bears watching because, you know, Kyler is the franchise.
-- Murray said it was clear the Seahawks had a plan when it came to containing him running the ball. Dunlap, after the game, about going after Murray: "I like my chances. I'll chase after a squirrel all day."
-- Well, there was Isaiah Simmons. If there was a bright spot, it was the first-round pick. He wasn't perfect, I don't believe – we will see what Vance Joseph has to say later this week – but he was good. The sack, the pass breakup some 30 yards downfield. You can see the potential that makes coaches and personnel men drool.
-- Larry Fitzgerald, team's leading receiver for the night. He had eight catches, and now has 90 at Qwest/CenturyLink/Luman Field in his career, the most receptions by a player in an opposing venue in NFL history.
-- DeAndre Hopkins also surpassed 700 career catches, becoming the youngest in NFL history to do so at age 28 years and 166 days.
-- Can't do that, Dre Kirkpatrick. Just can't. Definitely not when the defense has made a stop.
-- DK Metcalf got the better of Patrick Peterson this time. Metcalf only had three catches for 46 yards and a TD, and Peterson wasn't on him all the time -- the TD came against a zone – but there was a 41-yard completion against Peterson that was wiped out by a holding penalty that replays showed wasn't a hold, and Metcalf also drew a 46-yard pass interference call on Peterson (although the lack of pass rush hurt on that play.)
-- Not only did Simmons get his first NFL sack, but so too did Michael Dogbe, elevated from the practice squad with all the injuries to the defensive line.
-- Speaking of the defensive line, the Cardinals have to hope they get healthier there, although losing Jordan Phillips for three weeks at least on top of losing Corey Peters from the season is worrisome. It's hard not to think part of the success the Seahawks had on the ground was because of the injuries the Cardinals have up front.
And on the injury front, it's never good when a guy leaves without being able to put pressure on a leg. Safety Jalen Thompson just got back and now he might miss time again.
No, there wasn't a whole lot memorable about this one. But like Budda Baker said, time to think about the six games left, one at a time. Time to fly home.