Kyler Murray, Cardinals Beat Dak Prescott, Cowboys to Keep NFC West Title Hopes AliveJanuary 3, 2022
The Arizona Cardinals ended a three-game losing streak with a 25-22 win over the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on Sunday. Kyler Murray threw for 263 yards and two touchdowns as Arizona improved to 11-5.
With the win, the Cardinals kept their NFC West title hopes alive with one week left in the regular season.
The Cowboys are now 11-5 after having their four-game win streak come to an end. Dak Prescott led the way with 226 passing yards and three touchdowns in the loss.
Kyler Murray, QB, ARZ: 26-of-38 for 263 YDS, 2 TD; 9 CAR for 44 YDS
Antoine Wesley, WR, ARZ: 4 REC for 30 YDS, 2 TD
Dak Prescott, QB, DAL: 24-of-38 for 226 YDS, 3 TD; 5 CAR for 20 YDS, lost fumble
Cardinals Offense Returns to Form in Victory
It wasn't always pretty for Arizona on Sunday, but, at times, the Cardinals offense looked as good as it did during its 7-1 start to the year.
Murray and company played an efficient game, for the most part, scoring on five of their first six offensive drives. Both of Murray's touchdowns went to Antoine Wesley.
The Cardinals did a great job of eating up the clock. Five of their possessions went for eight plays or more. Murray played a clean game and did a great job with his decision-making.
The Cardinals finished the game with 399 total yards. It was a much-needed strong performance for Arizona to end its skid.
If the Cardinals can continue to play efficiently on offense and get timely stops on defense, they could make a deep run in the NFC playoffs.
Cowboys' Struggles on Offense Continue
It looks like last week's offensive explosion was just an anomaly for Dallas. Despite coming off a 56-14 win over the Washington Football Team and entering the game as six-point favorites according to DraftKings Sportsbook, the Cowboys quickly came back down to earth on Sunday.
Besides an 11-play drive that ended with a 21-yard touchdown to Michael Gallup, Dallas struggled to get much going against Arizona's defense. It didn't help matters that Gallup was injured and ruled out for the game on his scoring play.
The Cowboys opened the second half with back-to-back three-and-outs. Dallas was able to break through with a touchdown early in the fourth quarter.
Dallas Cowboys @dallascowboys
.<a href="https://twitter.com/cedwilson95?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@cedwilson95</a> with the moves 🕺<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AZvsDAL?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AZvsDAL</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DallasCowboys?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#DallasCowboys</a> <a href="https://t.co/5wL3CjQ00B">pic.twitter.com/5wL3CjQ00B</a>
But Prescott fumbled on the team's next possession. The Cardinals were able to extend their lead off the turnover with a 38-yard field goal.
Isaiah Simmons causes the turnover! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/RedSea?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#RedSea</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/isaiahsimmons25?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@isaiahsimmons25</a><br><br>📺: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AZvsDAL?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AZvsDAL</a> on FOX<br>📱: NFL app <a href="https://t.co/5cbnr6Snhn">pic.twitter.com/5cbnr6Snhn</a>
Dallas made things interesting with a touchdown and two-point conversion with a little over four minutes left in the game.
Dallas also completely abandoned its rushing attack. Ezekiel Elliott finished with just 16 yards, his seventh time in the last eight games with less than 50 yards on the ground.
Outside of the win against Washington, Prescott's play has caused some concern of late. He had just three passing touchdowns with three interceptions combined in Weeks 13-15.
It's a far cry from the high-powered Dallas offense that scored over 30 points in four of its first six games this season.
The Cowboys will have to get back to the balance on offense that carried them earlier this year. As evidenced by Sunday's loss, Dallas' defense will not always be able to bail the team out of trouble when the offense is struggling to put up points.
The Cardinals will end their regular season by hosting the Seattle Seahawks next Sunday. The Cowboys will travel to face the Philadelphia Eagles the same day.