Cardinals beat Lions, improve to 9-1

Arizona Cardinals QB Drew Stanton threw two touchdown passes early to WR Michael Floyd and the Cardinals defense did the rest in a 14-6 win over the Detroit Lions.

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Drew Stanton was good enough and Arizona's defense was excellent.

That combination provided the still-streaking Cardinals with a 14-6 victory over the Detroit Lions on Sunday that improved the NFL's best record to 9-1.

Stanton threw touchdown passes to Michael Floyd in Arizona's first two possessions and the Cardinals held the Lions without a touchdown for the first time this season in a matchup of teams with two of the best records in the league.

Detroit got inside the Arizona 20-yard line once, and that was after one of Stanton's two interceptions. The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for Detroit (7-3).

Stanton, starting after Carson Palmer was lost for the season with a knee injury, threw TD passes of 42 and 12 yards. After that, Arizona's offense stalled and Stanton threw two interceptions. But the Lions couldn't convert either turnover into a touchdown.

Arizona won its sixth in a row and has its best record through 10 games since 1948. The Cardinals also have a three-game lead over Seattle and San Francisco in the NFC West.

Arizona held an opponent without a TD for the first time this season.

Stanton, 3-1 as a starter this season, finished 21 of 32 for 306 yards. Detroit's Matthew Stafford was 18 of 30 for 183 yards with one interception.

Detroit's only real threat came late in the first half.

Cassius Vaughn intercepted Stanton's pass and got the ball at the 19. Detroit advanced it to the 10, but decided to go for a field goal on fourth-and-1.

Calvin Johnson had five catches for 59 yards for the Lions, only one for 4 yards in the first half.

The reversal of an officials' call early in the fourth quarter played a big role in the game.

Arizona's Justin Bethel got to a punt by the Cardinals at Detroit's 1-yard line. Bethel tossed the ball away from the end zone, and after it hit another Cardinal or two, Detroit's Jeremy Ross picked it up and ran 49 yards to the Arizona 45. Cardinals coach Bruce Arians challenged the play, arguing that Bethel had possession of the ball at the 1 and did not bat it back. After a review, Arians won the challenge and the Lions had to start from the 1.

A 12-yard pass from Stanton to Larry Fitzgerald on third-and-11 in the final minutes sealed the victory.

The Cardinals took the opening kick and went 80 yards in six plays with Floyd outjumping the defender for the 42-yard reception.

After a three-and-out by Detroit, Arizona went 77 yards in seven plays. Stanton threw 12 yards to Floyd for the score. A 49-yard pass play to Robert Hughes highlighted the drive.

Stanton was 3 of 4 for 59 yards in the first TD drive and 3 of 4 for 77 yards in the second.

After Matt Prater's 50-yard field goal hit the left upright and bounced through to make it 14-3, the Cardinals mounted another long drive. But on first down from the Lions 14, Stanton's pass was intercepted by Josh Bynes.

And late in the half, Stanton's ill-advised pass intended for John Brown was picked off by Vaughn and returned 25 yards to the Arizona 19. But the Cardinals' defense held, and on fourth-and-1, Detroit decided to settle for Prater's 28-yard field goal that cut Arizona's lead to 14-6 at the half.


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