Steve Breaston (left) and Leigh Torrence battled in what turned out to be the game-turning play in Sunday's game between the Cards and Redskins.
VIENNA, Va. – Kurt Warner stood up against a windowed wall at the Tysons Corner Marriott Monday, clearly still irritated with his team's loss the previous day.
Getting specific about plays that stuck with him from the 24-17 loss in Washington was simple for the Cardinals' veteran quarterback. There was one – his first interception of the season, a deep ball to Steve Breaston that bounced off cornerback Leigh Torrence and was picked off by a diving Carlos Rogers.
The play led to the game-winning touchdown. Other than that, Warner said, there wasn't too much else he'd want to take back.
Not that it mattered.
"We lost," Warner said. "If one play is bad and you lose, you have to change that one play. There is no consolation in my mind when you lose. You are just not going to play the perfect game. Anytime you lose, you are going to be skeptical and you're going to look back and you're going to wish you did something different."
The Cardinals spent Monday rehashing the disappointment of the Redskins' loss a final time, just as their week on the East Coast – the team will practice at Washington D.C.'s Catholic University before going to New Jersey Saturday prior to Sunday's game at the New York Jets – was getting started.
On the surface, the issues that affected the Cards Sunday felt like the road issues the team had a season ago, with turnovers and ill-timed penalties and missed opportunities.
But coach Ken Whisenhunt said the feeling around his team was much different this year than last. The uncertainty, Whisenhunt added, was gone.
Defensively, there were chances to stop the Redskins. One of the controversies of the game was whether Whisenhunt should have gone for it on fourth-and-4 near midfield with 2:46 left instead of punting. Whisenhunt didn't want a stop to mean the Redskins would pin the Cards inside their own 20 with the Cards without timeouts.
But the Cards' defense never got that stop.
"I think the offense did a good enough job to win," cornerback Rod Hood said. "I think the defense didn't."
Still, it was the game-changing interception that remained in the forefront. Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald said that after his 62-yard touchdown catch tied the game at 17, it felt like the Cardinals would find a way to win.
That may have happened if Breaston had come down with the ball.
"I tried to make more of a perfect throw instead of just throwing it out there," Warner said. "You just wish you could have that one back. I was trying to drop it in perfect and I thought (Breaston) was getting banged at the initial part of his route. I didn't want to overthrow him because I thought he had a shot. Worse-case scenario, you get a (pass interference)."
Except that wasn't the worst case. The worst case was Rogers making the pick, getting up off the ground without being touched, and racing 42 yards down to the Arizona 15. The return, Warner said, "was insult to injury."
"We've got to tackle him," offensive coordinator Todd Haley said. "We've got two receivers there. We have to at least make them go 20 yards into field-goal range. That was something we have talked about since day one and something that got us beat last year -- hidden yardage, returns off of turnovers. That's a killer."
Whisenhunt already decided to move practice times. Originally set for 1 to 3 p.m., it's been moved to noon to 2 p.m. Part of the reason, Whisenhunt said, was traffic jams in the afternoon. The Cardinals are staying about an hour away by bus from Catholic University.
"I am well aware of the traffic around here," said Whisenhunt, who played with the Redskins. "I have sat in it in the past." …
Whisenhunt said defensive end Bertrand Berry (groin strain), who suffered the only reported injury from Sunday's game and who returned to play and notch his third sack, jogged with his workout group Monday and seemed OK. …
Fitzgerald looked like he dropped a touchdown early in the third quarter on a 19-yard pass play with Redskins safety LaRon Landry on defense. The Cardinals ended up with a field goal on the drive.
"I should have just attacked the football," Fitzgerald said. "I was at the goal line trying to make sure I was in the end zone and he was able to close on the ball. I've got to attack it and if I get tackled on the 1- or 2-yard line, so be it. If I could have that back, I'd love to."
Contact Darren Urban at firstname.lastname@example.org. Posted 9/22/08.