The Arizona Cardinals were beginning to fray at the ends before rallying for an important 17-14 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. Arizona stands at 10-3 and holds a one-game lead in the NFC West over the Seattle Seahawks. On Thursday night, the Cardinals travel to take on the St. Louis Rams, a team that has recorded consecutive shutouts.
Arizona is limited offensively with Drew Stanton under center and Andre Ellington out for the year with a sports hernia. However, the Cardinals have made up for that deficiency by playing ball-hawking defense. The unit ranks a pedestrian 17th in yards allowed but has amassed 17 interceptions, the second most in the league behind only the Cleveland Browns. Rashad Johnson leads the team with four interceptions, while Jerraud Powers and Antonio Cromartie each have three.
The Cardinals defense will have to be on its game against St. Louis, because there isn't much room for error. The Rams have not allowed a point in their last two games, beating the Oakland Raiders and Washington by a combined 76-0. The Rams have an excellent pass rush, featuring Robert Quinn and Aaron Donald. Quinn leads the team with 10.5 sacks and Donald has seven, providing solid interior push. The Rams are only 6-7 but one of the most dangerous teams in the league, already notching wins against the San Francisco 49ers, Denver Broncos and Seahawks.
With a win, Arizona would stay ahead of the divisional race before hosting the Seahawks in Week 16 at University of Phoenix Stadium. St. Louis would technically stay in the playoff picture with a win at 7-7, but would still have a lot of ground to make up. The Rams are without a franchise quarterback with Shaun Hill, Austin Davis and Sam Bradford on the roster. Should general manager Les Snead be able to solve that problem, St. Louis would be in business going forward.
How to Watch
Where: Edward Jones Dome, St. Louis
When: 8:25 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network
Announcers: Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson
For more on the Cardinals, check out Revenge of the Birds.
To keep up on the Rams, head over to Turf Show Times.