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Turnovers Come, And They Hurt

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Redskins cornerback Leigh Torrence and Cardinals receiver Steve Breaston battle for a ball in the fourth quarter Sunday that was eventually intercepted by Carlos Rogers.

LANDOVER, Md. – Steve Breaston looked sick as he talked about the pass he couldn't quite get and the Redskins could.

A bomb attempt to Breaston Sunday, with the score tied at 17, was open. But the ball was slightly underthrown and cornerback Leigh Torrence was able to knock it away – and then Redskins cornerback Carlos Rogers made a diving interception.

Rogers then got up and raced 42 yards to the Arizona 15-yard line to set up the game-winning touchdown. And Breaston was left to think what if.

"I've got to stick my feet in the ground and at least try and draw a pass interference," a quiet Breaston said. "When the ball's not there, you have to try and make a play. The bounce went their way. But you have to put your feet in the ground and try and make a play."

The Cardinals had been the only team in the league without a turnover, but that changed Sunday. It was a fumble that was the first, a lost ball by running back Edgerrin James when he was hit after a screen pass. That turnover, at the Arizona 34, led to a Washington field goal.

Later came Warner's first interception of the year.

Scoring after the turnovers "was the real difference for us today," Redskins coach Jim Zorn said.

"It was probably a little bit underthrown (but) it's one of those you hope your guy can make a play or get a (pass interference) instead of it turning against you," Warner said. "It is tough. You feel you play a good game and make no mistakes and then you have one go off a helmet and get picked off and it turns the game around."

For the second straight game, the Cardinals didn't force a turnover either as the Redskins stayed with a short, safe passing game.

"They went deep, what, once or twice?" defensive tackle Darnell Dockett said. "Everything was underneath, everything was sideways. I don't if that's the West Coast offense … I thought, it's the NFC East, I expected a physical game. It was totally the opposite."

DELAY, BUT WHY?

An important play early in the game came after the Cards fell behind 7-0 to open the game. The Cards' offense was marching for their own score when they had a fourth-and-1 at the Washington 41. With the play clock winding down, the Cardinals ran a playaction pass and Warner hit tight end Ben Patrick in stride for what looked at first like an easy tying touchdown.

But the whistle had blown, and Warner was called for delay of game – which left Warner incredulous.

"I was watching the clock as it was going down and there is no question I snapped it with one second on the (play) clock," Warner said. "I was specifically watching it knowing I had a timeout. There is no doubt in my mind."

Coach Ken Whisenhunt said the same thing, insisting he would have called timeout because he too was watching the play clock. Warner yelled at the officials afterward, but he knew it wouldn't matter.

"Once they call it they call it," Warner said. "I have no idea how they called that. I know without a shadow of a doubt, I was watching the clock, there was one second left. It's frustrating because it may have been a touchdown on the play."

The Cards, then facing fourth-and-6, punted.

URBAN'S PASS

The Cardinals continued their use of new and interesting plays by running a double pass, with Warner throwing backward to wide receiver Jerheme Urban and then Urban hitting running back Tim Hightower for an 18-yard gain. On the next play, Warner threw a four-yard touchdown pass to Anquan Boldin.

"It's something we worked on," said Urban, who hadn't thrown a pass since he was a senior in college six years ago and who still doesn't have a reception this season. "(Offensive coordinator) Todd (Haley)'s got to call it.  I was just ready for it if it came."

The Cardinals also used a different defensive back on offense for a third straight game, throwing a short pass to safety Antrel Rolle. But Rolle's reception was negated after the Cards accepted a Washington offsides penalty on the play.

A PENALTY THAT HELPED

The Cardinals could have been in big trouble earlier in the fourth quarter when cornerback Rod Hood lost track of Redskins wideout Devin Thomas while quarterback Jason Campbell was scrambling, and Campbell lofted a 68-yard TD pass to the open Thomas.

But the play was called back when Redskins tackle Stephon Heyer drilled Dockett when Dockett was not only away from the play but turned away from Campbell. Heyer was called for unnecessary roughness.

"He just hit me," Dockett said. "It's cool. Actually we needed that. We needed some breaks."

EXTRA POINTS

Defensive end Bertrand Berry was the only injury, leaving early with a left groin strain. But Berry returned soon after and played the rest of the game …

The Cardinals had their streak snapped of 10 straight games of scoring at least 20 points. …

Larry Fitzgerald's 62-yard touchdown catch was the longest scoring play of his career. His career-long play was his 75-yard catch against Miami last week, but he didn't get in the end zone on that play.


Contact Darren Urban at askdarren@cardinals.nfl.net. Posted 9/21/08.

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