Jonathan Stewart revved up the engine for the Carolina Panthers with an opening drive touchdown, but it was the Cardinals who were hot in the first half of the NFC Divisional matchup.
Kurt Warner and Larry Fitzgerald got Cardinals back in the game before it slipped away. A beautiful 41-yard reception set up the Cardinals' first touchdown. Tim Hightower received a short 3-yard pass for the game equalizer, 7-7.
Antonio Smith got the turnover party started. He took care of the club when he attacked the ball and stripped it from QB Jake Delhomme. Edgerrin James moved the chains on his first attempt at goal, but the second time was the charm. James went straight through the middle to get the go-ahead lead, 14-7.
The Cardinals scored 14 points in 56 seconds.
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie solidified the notion that everything was clicking for the Cardinals. He picked off Delhomme to start the second quarter. The turnover would cost Carolina a field goal, 17-7 Cardinals.
Neil Rackers would get another field goal through the post, 20-7.
Gerald Hayes got in the fun when he intercepted Carolina. Warner went deep to Fitzgerald for the 27-7 final first half margin.
Arizona dished out a lofty deficit to come back from, and the Cardinals get the ball back at the second half.
Keys to Second Half
If Warner can continue to do as he pleases, the Cardinals are moving on to face the Eagles or the Giants. If Fitzgerald can continue to do what he's known for, get the champagne ready. If the Cardinals' defense keeps shutting down any Carolina attempt, all heck just might break loose.
Carolina Eating Crow at Half
CardinalsSource Top Stories
Bettcher stresses third down, red zone playArizona Cardinals' defensive coordinator James Bettcher stressed the importance of intention vs. direction with his defense this week.
CardinalsSourceFriday at 10:45 AM
Goodwin: Line needs improved conditioningArizona Cardinals' offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin said part of the reason for the offense's late decline in Atlanta Sunday was poor conditioning along the offensive line.
CardinalsSourceFriday at 7:49 AM
Six players return to practice, Mathieu outCardinals' safety Tyrann Mathieu sat out of Thursday's practice with a shoulder injury that has limited him since Arizona's loss at Carolina.
CardinalsSourceThursday at 4:20 PM
Arians: Humphries' effort the differenceSecond-year offensive tackle D.J. Humphries made his first career start at left tackle Sunday, a position the Cardinals believe is a more natural fit for him.
CardinalsSourceThursday at 7:02 AM
Report: Cardinals create 2016 cap spaceThe Arizona Cardinals freed up salary cap space for the remainder of the 2016 season by converting a portion of Patrick Peterson's contract into a signing bonus.
CardinalsSourceWednesday at 12:45 PM