Nobody looked happier than Kevin Kolb on Sunday. It looked as if he had a sigh of relief that he'd been holding for 12 weeks. Now, he can do it.
The season hasn't gone as he wanted or planned. His turf toe injury seemed to put him back a lot longer than he had hoped.
But this win was special. It was the first win of the year for the Cardinals against a team with a winning record, but they have opportunities to get more in their final four games.
The Cardinals sit at 5-7 tied for second in the NFC West. The San Francisco 49ers won the division with a convincing win over the hapless St. Louis Rams. There is an outside shot that the Cardinals can sneak up and get a wild card, but they would have to win out and have some good fortune.
But let's forget that playoff talk and get right to who made the biggest contributions in this wonderful victory over the Cowboys.
I'm glad Kevin Kolb got this win. Coming into the game he was 1-6 on the year. He was out injured for four games.
He came out rusty to say the least, passing for just 44 yards in the first half. The offense barely moved at all.
But Kolb came out in the second half and played a nearly flawless game. He had no turnovers. He threw for 203 yards in the second half, including the game winning touchdown pass to LaRod Stephens-Howling in overtime.
Could this win be the game that helps Kolb finally get in rhythm and be that guy the Cardinals traded away draft picks for? Let's hope so.
Sure, the final four games could be nothing more than filler at this point, but if the Cardinals win all four, 2012 can't get here fast enough.
Especially if Kevin Kolb is the reason for the wins.
This may seem like a funny choice considering Peterson only had one punt return for one yard.
But his presence on the field makes teams now change their game plan. The Cowboys were not going to allow Peterson to beat them. Not today. And they didn't give him the opportunity.
Patrick Peterson did cover Dez Bryant fairly well, though. Sure, he gave up that touchdown in the second quarter, but for the most part, he blanketed Bryant and made some big plays to stop Cowboy drives.
Admit it. That was one exciting finale in overtime. I know many Cardinals fans are perplexed why LaRod Stephens-Howling doesn't get more touches on the offensive side of the ball.
He is a playmaker, and that finish shows that he deserves more touches. The touchdown catch at the end of the game was one of the reasons why some call him the Cardinals' own version of Darren Sproles.
Once he gets the ball, he's one of the fastest men on the field.
At the end of the play, offensive lineman Daryn Colledge admitted that he almost caused Stephens-Howling to trip up. He probably would have been run out of town tonight, but fortunately that didn't happen. Howling regained his composure and made it to the end zone.
Let me tell you that no one was happier for Andre Roberts than me. It's been a dreadful year for him. He's dropped so many passes that could have resulted in points, first downs or drive continuations.
To watch Roberts haul in some pretty incredible catches and get the yards after the catch made me smile. He deserves this recognition after having a six-catch day with 111 yards.
This is Roberts' second time going over 100 yards receiving. The first time was last year on Christmas against these very same Dallas Cowboys with John Skelton at quarterback.
This was definitely a day the Cardinals could not afford to have missed opportunities. When you are playing a team that is as hot as the Dallas Cowboys have been, you have to take every single chance to score points and capitalize on it.
Jay Feely did that.
His 48-yard field goal was big, I'll admit. I was nervous when he lined up, but Feely nailed it. That's the kind of performance the Cardinals needed from him all year.
Unfortunately, a few game outcomes could have been changed if Feely did what he accomplished today, but we'll focus on the good, and that's what Feely was today. Good.
You can't single out just one guy from the defense. It was a total team effort and the Cardinals had five sacks from five different players.
The secondary didn't give up the big plays and the defense would bend but not break. Since the meltdown in Baltimore, the Cardinals defense has been outstanding. The Cardinals have won four out of their last five and the defense has been the major reason for that streak.
The Cardinals have only yielded five touchdowns in their last five games.
Even in the lone loss at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers, the defense held the 49ers down for most of the game.
It seems that now the scheme that Ray Horton brought to Arizona is finally becoming entrenched in the minds of the Arizona Cardinals players. There are no more puzzled faces on the field. There is accountability at every position and now the younger players are contributing in positions where the veterans are not.
If you are a Cardinals fan, these last four games can give hope for the 2012 season and the possibility that the Arizona Cardinals can potentially compete for the division title or more.