Aug 16, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer (20) runs with the ball around Minnesota Vikings linebacker Gerald Hodges (50) to score a touchdown in the first quarter at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona Cardinals Fall To Minnesota Vikings: Offensive Grades

It wasn’t as perfect a start for the Arizona Cardinals as it was in last weeks preseason game. The Arizona Cardinals fell to the Minnesota Vikings 30-28. But that’s the best part of the season, because all that matters is that the team is learning and using their mistakes as tools for improvement.

The Cardinals run game struggled on 34 carrys for only 96 yards. Moving forward, the run game is something Arizona must perfect sooner rather than later.

Arizona did put together a few nice long drives that resulted in touchdowns. This proved once again that they can move the ball down the field effectively and well.

Last week the offense was spectacular as they trashed the Houston Texans 32-0. This week the offense wasn’t so stunning, but it was still good.

Wide receiver Jaron Brown, looked like a bull on a 51-yard screen pass, an acrobat pulling down a 35-yard bomb and a shoe-in to make the roster. There was a running game that still wasn’t incredibly productive but was the backbone of a 10-minute touchdown drive to open the second half.

As Carson Palmer enters his 12th NFL season and second with Arizona, he completed passes of 25 yards to Brown and 35 yards to Rob Housler, then capped his drive with a 7-yard scoring pass to wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald.

“We came here to win the ballgame,” Arians said. “I was pleased with the start of the football game. We want to start fast.”

Palmer’s night didn’t go quite as perfectly as it did as last week, but the veteran quarterback and his first-string offense still had to smile after engaging on a 94-yard touchdown drive to start the game. Larry Fitzgerald hauled in a leaping 20-yard catch – much to the delight of his hometown fans – to get the Cardinals out of the initial hole, but it was the 51-yard pass to Brown that was the big play.

Brown busted through multiple tackles and sprinted down the sideline to put the Cardinals in range. A smart audible by Palmer also turned into a 16-yard swing pass to running back Andre Ellington for a big first down before Jonathan Dwyer finally scored on a one-yard run.

Offense Grade - B-

Next Arizona Cardinals Game

Sun., Aug. 24, 2014
Cincinnati Bengals
5:00 p.m. (NBC)

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Tags: Arizona Cardinals Offensive Grades

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