Final Score: Arizona 40, Indianapolis 11
Glendale, AZ (SportsNetwork.com) - Larry Fitzgerald caught two touchdown passes from Carson Palmer as the Arizona Cardinals used a 20-point second quarter to beat the Indianapolis Colts by a 40-11 margin.
Fitzgerald caught five passes for 52 yards, becoming the youngest player in NFL history to reach 11,000 yards receiving. Michael Floyd hauled in seven passes for 104 yards for the Cardinals (7-4), who have won four in a row.
"I don't think we're well respected throughout the league and that's not any body's fault but our own," Palmer said. "I think we're better than people think."
Palmer completed 26-of-37 passes for 314 yards for Arizona. Rashard Mendenhall carried the ball 13 times for 54 yards and a score.
Bruce Arians faced the Colts for the first time since leaving the team for the head coaching job in Arizona.
Last season, Arians became the Colts' interim head coach after their head coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with leukemia. Arians was 9-3 in Pagano's absence and helped Indianapolis to the playoffs one year after it had gone 2-14 while Peyton Manning stood injured on the sidelines. He became the first interim coach to be named the league's coach of the year, and parlayed the success into a four-year deal with the Cardinals in January.
Andrew Luck completed 20-of-39 passes for 163 yards, one touchdown and an interception for the Colts (7-4), who lead the Titans by two games for first place in the AFC South. Tennessee beat Oakland on Sunday.
"It's embarrassing," Luck admitted. "They executed and we didn't. Credit to them."
The Cardinals got the ball to start the game and scored a touchdown. Rob Housler caught passes of 15 and 20 yards to move the ball to the Indianapolis 19-yard line. Andre Ellington added a 12-yard run before Fitzgerald caught a 4-yard TD pass.
The Arizona offense continued to move the ball on its next possession. Mendenhall's 24-yard catch and a defensive pass interference penalty moved the ball to the Indianapolis 28. Ellington's 13-yard run helped the Cardinals move the ball to the 10-yard line. Jay Feely came on to try a 28-yard field goal, but it was blocked.
The Colts got some offense going on their second possession. Coby Fleener's 16-yard catch, T.Y. Hilton's 12-yard grab and a defensive pass interference penalty moved the ball to the Arizona 10-yard line. Indianapolis stalled on offense from there and had to settle for a 27-yard field goal from Adam Vinatieri.
The Cardinals created some distance with a 20-point second quarter. Floyd caught a 29-yard pass prior to Fitzgerald's 26-yard TD catch with 13:29 left in the half.
Feely added a 48-yard field goal with 8:15 remaining.
On the second play of the ensuing Indianapolis possession, Luck was picked off by Karlos Dansby. The linebacker returned the ball 22 yards for a touchdown.
Feely's 50-yard field goal at the end of the half made it a 27-3 contest. Fitzgerald made the field goal possible with a 16-yard catch on 3rd-and-14.
The Colts turned the ball over on downs to start the second half. Luck led his team down to the Arizona 36. He threw three straight incomplete passes and the Indianapolis offense left the field with no points.
The Cardinals then put together an 11-play, 64-yard march that took over five minutes off the clock. The home team faced a trio of third downs on the drive. Jaron Brown and Floyd converted the first two before a defensive pass interference call gave Arizona a first down at the 5-yard line. Mendenhall followed with a 5-yard TD run.
With 10:26 left in the fourth quarter, Fleener caught a 17-yard TD pass. A successful two-point conversion got the Colts within 34-11.
Feely made two more field goals to account for the final margin.
Arizona racked up 410 yards of total offense, compared to 239 for the Colts ... Indianapolis fullback Stanley Havili and linebacker Kavell Conner missed the game ... Ellington carried the ball 10 times for 50 yards.
11/24 22:49:15 ET
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