NFL Week 9 – Cardinals, Cowboys Fight for NFC Lead
Randy McInnisNo comments
The NFC lead is on the line Sunday when the 6-1 Arizona Cardinals visit the 6-2 Dallas Cowboys (1:00 p.m. Eastern on FOX).
While the Cardinals are coming off a watershed victory against the Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas unexpectedly lost its Monday night tilt against Washington. The Cowboys were without quarterback Tony Romo for part of the game last week, and he is listed as questionable for Sunday.
“Anytime someone’s had back surgery you’re always a little bit nervous when you get hit in a specific instance like that,” Romo said of the hit that knocked him out. “The positive is it’s completely unrelated to the disk or anything that could be long term, per se. So that part of if, yeah, that’s a positive.”
Regardless of whether Romo plays, the Cowboys’ bread-and-butter this year is the running game, led by DeMarco Murray. The star running back is on a record pace with 1,054 yards rushing through eight games, and he will likely have an even heavier work load this week (with Romo either on the bench or less than 100%).
The Cardinals had their own star player go down last week, when cornerback Patrick Peterson was knocked out of the game with a concussion. Fortunately, Peterson should be back against Dallas. The Cardinals, who are last in the league against the pass, can ill-afford to be without their top corner. Without Peterson for the better part of the game last week, Arizona gave up 400-plus passing yards, over 100 more than their season average. With that said, they still came out with the win.
“We realize we can play better,” said Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer. “I think we’re realistic in that we can play better and we need to play better.
“Realizing all the negative things that happened and we still keep getting wins, I do think we have a good swagger about us, a confidence, and that will continue to live if we keep winning.”
Dallas is currently a 4-point favorite for Sunday’s game. The over/under is at 48.