By Terrance Turner
Dec. 12, 2022
Tonight the Arizona Cardinals faced the New England Patriots at home on “Monday Night Football”. The Cardinals are 4-8. They were badly beaten in their last MNF game against the 49ers. And their season went from bad to worse tonight after Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray was injured.
It took all of 90 seconds for Murray to get hurt. With 13:25 left in the first quarter, Murray took off scrambled downfield. After running a few yards, he stumbled to the ground — and didn’t get up.
He was still down when ESPN came back from a commercial break. Murray couldn’t get up, almost immobilized by a non-contact injury. He was carted off the field.
ESPN reporter Lisa Salters said that Murray held it together while on the field. But once he reached the tunnel, Walters said, Murray started sobbing.
Murray’s sorrow is understandable. Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury spoke with Walters later. He confirmed that Murray’s out for the rest of the game. Colt McCoy came in at quarterback.
More injuries piled up afterward. The Cardinals struggled through a scoreless first quarter. And kicker Matt Prater missed a 50-yard field goal:
Thankfully, Prater improved. Eight seconds into the second quarter, he kicked a 33-yard field goal. But the Patriots took the lead. Kevin Harris put the Pats on the board with a 14-yard rush.
Subsequently, Prater answered with another field goal. This time, he kicked from 32 yards out to make it a 7-6 game. The Cardinals seized the lead on their next drive. Running back James Conner burst through defenders and reached the end zone, extending his arms past the goal line to score.
With just 3 minutes to go in the half, the Cardinals took a 13-7 lead. But a turnover by Arizona gave New England the ball. Kicker Nick Folk cashed in with a 51-yard field goal. It was 13-10 at halftime.
The Patriots tied the game at 13 early in the third quarter. Nick Folk made a 23-yard field goal. That field goal capped an 8-play, 71-yard drive. New England took the lead five minutes later.
The next drive ended in disaster. McCoy threw to wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. After the catch, Hopkins carried the ball in one hand. Big mistake. The Patriots forced a fumble. Linebacker Raekwon McMillan recovered. He returned the ball 23 yards for the touchdown.
Pierre Strong scored early in the fourth quarter, and the Patriots went on to win, 27-13. And quarterback Mac Jones kept it simple in a postgame interview. “We just wanted to win the game; that’s all we cared about.” They won. As a result, they have a 7-6 record. The Cardinals fall to 4-9.