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Enemy Reaction 2018: Arizona Cardinals

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NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I won’t lie, I wasn’t totally committed to doing an Enemy Reaction for this one, if largely because of the Earl Thomas injury. Still, it’s a divisional win that came down to the wire and had a crazy ending (in a week filled with crazy endings), so you’re getting an Enemy Reaction for the Seattle Seahawks’ win over the Arizona Cardinals.

Game thread comments from Cards fans are courtesy of Revenge of the Birds.


With Russell Wilson blocking, Mike Davis springs free for 20-yard touchdown (7-0 SEA)

David Johnson fumbles, Seahawks recover (7-0 SEA)

Sebastian Janikowski misses from 38 yards out (7-0 SEA)

Sebastian Janikowski misses from 52 yards out (7-3 SEA)

David Johnson punches it in to give Arizona the lead, much to the excitement of the ref (10-7 ARI)

4th and 1 goes horribly wrong for Seahawks, Cardinals take over on downs (10-7 ARI)

Phil Dawson misses wide right to close out the half (10-7 ARI)

Mike Davis scores second touchdown of the game, Seahawks retake the lead (17-10 SEA)

Chad Williams ties the game with a touchdown grab from Josh Rosen (17-17)

Reaction to Earl Thomas’ season-ending injury

Prescient

Phil Dawson hooks it wide right, game remains tied (17-17)

Seabass wins it! (20-17 SEA Final)


Post-Game: Blame the kicker, not the playcalling (Jess Root, Cards Wire)

As in baseball with a young starting pitcher who had been successful and was near the end of his pitch count, a manager often goes to the bullpen to finish off the game, keeping the pitcher from making that one bad pitch. Dawson was the reliever who came in and blew it.

If he makes the kick, who knows what happens? Maybe the Seahawks get a touchdown. Maybe the game goes to overtime. But they at least should have had the lead.

That wasn’t Mike McCoy’s fault. It wasn’t Steve Wilks’ fault. That was on Phil Dawson.

It makes sense for a defensive-minded coach to go more conservatively with a young QB and a defense he trusts and plenty of offensive struggles through three-plus games. If it works out, no one really is questioning the move.

Instead, a veteran kicker misses the field goal, the Cardinals remain winless and now Wilks is being second-guessed.

That’s how this works in the NFL.

Perhaps now what the real second-guessing should be is the decision to keep Dawson over undrafted rookie Matt McCrane, who only kicked a game-winning field goal in overtime for the Oakland Raiders.

Post-Game: Arizona has found their franchise quarterback (Scott Allen, Raising Zona)

Rosen’s stats from Sunday (15-27-180) aren’t going to blow anyone away. However he had one touchdown and did not throw an interception.

He looked poised most of the day. He made smart decisions such as throwing the ball away when he had the opportunity. He was sacked just once and he couldn’t do anything with that.

He was given a few opportunities to hit home run balls but again dropped passes doomed success on those attempts. This game doesn’t come down to missed field goals if he connects on those long balls.

If anything positive came out of Sunday’s loss, which sent the Cardinals to their first 0-4 start since leaving St. Louis, is that they seem to be set at quarterback.

This doesn’t mean he won’t struggle at times this season. Far from it. Rosen has some daunting defenses to face, especially on the road.

[...]

Rosen only blamed himself after Sunday’s loss when he was practically the only one that shouldn’t have shouldered any blame. That’s a leader for you right there. The Cardinals have their franchise quarterback.

Enemy Preaction: Los Angeles Rams


The Seahawks now sit at 2-2 with a showdown against the 4-0 Rams. Seattle is a seven-point underdog at home, which doesn’t even seem possible with Russell Wilson at QB, but the defense still doesn’t have K.J. Wright and just lost Earl Thomas, and the offense... could be better. I don’t have a problem with the betting line considering how the opposition looks as good as advertised. Still, it’s a divisional game, Seattle surely has the 42-7 thumping on their minds from last year, and an upset victory to start October could significantly boost the Seahawks’ chances of a playoff berth.

Thanks for reading and go ‘Hawks!