With week 13 finished in this NFL season the Arizona Cardinals hold a three game lead over their closest competitor in the division, the Seattle Seahawks. To the chagrin of the Seahawks, there are only four more games left in the season. So the Hawks have to win at least three of the four and hope that the Cardinals lose three out of four. That doesn’t sound good. Still, the team that has made the last two Super Bowls and winning one of them still has a chance to make number three as a wild card entry. I don’t think anyone should be counting out the Seahawks.
The main reason why is their quarterback Russell Wilson. He threw three touchdown passes and ran for another touchdown as he led the Seahawks over the Minnesota Vikings. He finished with 21 completions on 27 throws for 274 yards. He also added 51 yards rushing to the tally sheet.
Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin caught two of those scoring tosses and collected 94 yards in receptions and running back Thomas Rawls rushed for 101 yards and a touchdown.
Meanwhile, the Seahawks defense held the Vikings to only one touchdown –- Cordarrelle Patterson’s 101-yard kickoff return in the third quarter. Running back Adrian Peterson could manage gaining only 18 yards on eight carries. That marks the third-lowest single-game total of his career. The Vikings as a team collected only 31 rushing yards.
The Vikings helped on two of the Seahawks scoring drives – one for 81 yards and another for 98 yards –- in the first half with inopportune penalties and missed tackles. On one play when the Seahawks were punting Vikings’ cornerback Terrence Newman was flagged for holding, which permitted the hawks to continue their drive. Moreover, Vikings’ quarterback Teddy Bridgewater overthrew Stefon Diggs late in the second quarter and Earl Thomas intercepted it. During the run back Diggs grabbed Thomas’ facemask and the Seahawks got the ball at the Vikings’ 20-yard line with 68 seconds remaining in the half. Wilson hit Baldwin for a touchdown putting the hawks up 21-0.
Bridgewater finished with 17 completions on 28 attempts for 118 yards and an interception. He was sacked four times. SEAHAWKS 38 VIKINGS 7
The Arizona Cardinals offense collected a total of 524 yards as the team defeated the St. Louis Rams for its sixth consecutive win. Rookie running back David Johnson replaced Chris Johnson and Andre Ellington, both out due to injuries, and contributed 99 yards rushing and a touchdown reception. Another replacement, Kerwynn Williams, scored his first career touchdown on a 35-yard run.
Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer completed 26 passes on 40 attempts for 356 yards and receiver Larry Fitzgerald caught eight passes for 55 yards and collected the 1,000th reception of his career and topped 1,000 yards receiving this season for the seventh time.
The Cardinals took the lead on its opening drive of 80 yards that was finished with a 22-yard touchdown pass from Palmer to J.J. Nelson and never relinquished it. They dominated time of possession and held the ball for 39 minutes and 47 seconds.
Meanwhile, the Rams offense was shut out in the first half for the second time this season and finished with 212 yards and nine first downs. They converted only one third down out of 12. Nick Foles completed 15 out of 35 passes for 146 yards and an interception. Running back Todd Gurley rushed for only 41 yards on nine carries and the Rams gained only a total of 66 yards on the ground. Kenny Britt was the team’s leading receiver with two catches for 41 yards. Tavon Austin was held to one catch for 24 yards. CARDINALS 27 RAMS 3
San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Blaine Gabbert rushed for the tying touchdown late in regulation then threw a 71-yard touchdown pass to Torrey Smith to beat the Chicago Bears in overtime. Bears’ kicker Robbie Gould missed a field goal at the end of regulation.
The Bears were leading 20-13 on Ka-Deem Carey’s 4-yard touchdown run with 3:32 remaining. Gabbert then scrambled 44 yards for his first career-rushing touchdown with 1:42 remaining. Then Deonte Thompson returned a kickoff 74-yards to the 49ers 28. A few plays later Gould missed a field goal from 17-yards out. Gould also missed kicks from 40-yards and 36-yards.
Gabbert completed 18 of 32 passes for 196 yards and a touchdown. He also rushed for 75 yards on six carries. He was sacked four times.
Bears’ quarterback Jay Cutler completed 18 or 31 passes for 202 yards and one interception. He was sacked once. Alshon Jeffery caught four passes for 85 yards. Matt Forte rushed for 84 yards on 21 carries for a touchdown and Jeremy Langford gained 59 yards on 12 carries. The Bears rushed for a total of 170 yards. 49ERS 26 BEARS 20
NFC WEST STANDINGS Overall Division
ARIZONA CARDINALS 10-2 4-1
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 7-5 2-2
ST. LOUIS RAMS 4-8 3-1
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS 4-8 0-5
NFC WEST SCHEDULE
CARDINALS @ VIKINGS THURSDAY, DECEMBER 10, 2015
49ERS @ BROWNS SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2015
SEAHAWKS @ RAVENS SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2015
LIONS @ RAMS SUNDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2015
Courtesy of Bigstory.ap.org