The Arizona Cardinals secured their first win of the Kliff Kingsbury era, beating the flailing Bengals, 26-23, in Week 5 of NFL action.
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It was a tale of two halves for the Cardinals' secondary, as its play regressed throughout the game. Byron Murphy and Budda Baker exemplified this, as both allowed big plays in the second half. Baker, in particular, was having a solid game and then was burned badly to allow a game-tying touchdown pass in the fourth quarter.
Haason Reddick had one of his best days as a Cardinal today. Reddick's speed and athleticism were particularly evident in coverage and in the pass-rush. When Reddick wasn't beating a pass-blocker to get pressure on the quarterback, he was shutting down the quick and intermediate passing game. He is a big reason why Tyler Eifert had a quiet afternoon.
Kyler Murray showed just how much of a dual-threat he can be by leading the Cardinals with 93 yards rushing on just 10 carries, including a 24-yard scramble on the final drive to help set up Zane Gonzalez‘s game-winning field goal. He also showed well in the passing game, hitting big throws down the field throughout the game and displaying some terrific accuracy.
Andy Isabella got involved in the gameplan this week for the Cardinals, carrying the ball twice on jet sweep plays. He still failed to see a target in the passing game. It will be interesting to see how Arizona uses him going forward, especially after the massive production he put up at UMass during his senior college season.
Tyler Boyd started the game slowly but became Bengals' best weapon in the second half. Boyd faced a myriad of defenders but was able to create separation against the Cardinals secondary. His explosiveness led to a few big passing plays in the fourth quarter, including a game-tying deep touchdown reception.
The interior of the Bengals' offensive line struggled run-blocking in this one. Cincinnati started the game OK in this regard, but the play of Michael Jordan and Trey Hopkins soon deteriorated. After the first drive, the Bengals relied on the running backs to make plays in space or fight for yards after contact.
Cincinnati's front was diced up by the Cardinals in this one to the tune of 266 yards on the ground. While some of that is a testament to the play of Arizona's offensive line, Nick Vigil, in particular, had a poor showing, as he repeatedly found himself in poor position against the run.
Dre Kirkpatrick made some nice plays in coverage, tightly covering receivers and breaking up passes. One of his best plays came at the end of the first half when he closed quickly on a screen pass to Larry Fitzgerald inside the five-yard line, tackling him for no gain and forcing Arizona to kick a field goal.