Cardinals win but lose Drew Stanton to injury

The Arizona Cardinals won ugly Thursday night, beating the Rams 12-6 to remain a full game ahead of the Seahawks in the NFC West division race. In doing so, however, Arizona lost quarterback Drew Stanton to a serious knee injury. The Seahawks travel to Arizona next week with first place potentially on the line if Seattle can hold serve and handle San Francisco on Sunday.

The Arizona Cardinals held on to first place in the NFC West by defeating St. Louis but lost quarterback Drew Stanton to a serious knee injury.

Stanton, who entered the game 2-2 since taking over for Carson Palmer, was 12 of 20 for 109 yards. The injury occurred after he was dragged down midway through the third quarter by a couple of St. Louis' defenders, including rookie defensive tackle Aaron Donald and outside linebacker Alec Ogletree. Stanton was in clear pain.

When Stanton got up, he hopped on his left foot to keep all weight off the right before being carted off the field. Head coach Bruce Arians did not know the severity of Stanton's injury following the game. Stanton will undergo an MRI on Friday. Dating back to his days at Michigan State, Stanton has suffered two previous serious injuries to his right knee.

Many NFL teams (including the Seahawks) elect to keep just two quarterbacks active each week. The Cardinals, however, had three. Bruce Arians elected to go with veteran Ryan Lindley over rookie Logan Thomas, a talented but very raw thrower out of Virginia Tech. Lindley completed 4 of 10 passes for 30 yards as the Cardinals held on to beat the Rams. The credit goes to dominant effort from Arizona's defense which forced five three-and-outs by the Rams in the third quarter alone and held St. Louis to short field goals after twice allowing the Rams within the three-yard line.

An early forced fumble of Tre Mason from Frostee Rucker set the tone for the Cardinals, who frustrated Shaun Hill with a steady diet of pressure and strong open-field tackling.

Based largely on the 9-3 lead the Cardinals built while Stanton was playing, Arizona survived. The Seahawks will travel to Glendale next week. If the Seahawks beat the 49ers Sunday, they'll likely be facing Arizona's third-string quarterback with first place in the division on the line. The Cardinals, 11-3, are 7-0 at University of Phoenix Stadium.

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