In addition to slowing down Turner, the Cardinals kept Atlanta QB Matt Ryan in check for most of the afternoon. Ryan finished 26-of-40 for 199 yards and tossed two touchdowns along with a pair of interceptions. Arizona's pass rush harassed Ryan from start to finish, sacking him three times and forcing a safety during fourth quarter action.
Rookie CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie continues to excel and made several big plays against the Falcons' offense. Rodgers-Cromartie led the Cardinals with 10 tackles and added an interception. Following 14 unanswered points by Atlanta, FS Antrel Rolle returned a fumble 27 yards for a score less than a minute into the second half. Rolle's touchdown changed the momentum of the game and led to 16 straight points by Arizona.
RB Tim Hightower
Arizona QB Kurt Warner completed 19-of-32 passes for 271 yards and two touchdowns. He was intercepted once as a pass intended for WR Jerheme Urban was tipped in the air and picked off by Atlanta CB Chevis Jackson. Warner found WR Larry Fitzgerald early in the first quarter for a 42-yard touchdown pass and hooked up with WR Anquan Boldin on a 71-yard touchdown midway through the second quarter.
Fitzgerald led Arizona's receiving corps with six catches for 101 yards and a score. Boldin racked up 71 yards and a touchdown on two catches but left the game with a hamstring injury and did not return. WR Steve Breaston also contributed with three receptions for 39 yards and relative unknown TE Stephen Spach chipped in with three grabs for 34 yards. Spach managed only two catches for 15 yards during the regular season, but sealed the Cardinals' victory with a late third down conversion.
Regardless of the outcome of Sunday's NFC Wild Card matchup between the Minnesota Vikings and Philadelphia Eagles, Arizona will see a familiar face next week. The Cardinals squared off against the Carolina Panthers and New York Giants during the regular season but fell short on each occasion. Arizona will pack its bags for New York if the Vikings prevail while they'll be headed back to Carolina if the Eagles come out on top.
Brad Wilbricht can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org