Most of the coverage in the wake of the Jets’ 7-6 win on Sunday centered on their decision to pull quarterback Mark Sanchez in favor of Greg McElroy.
That left the performance of the Cardinals offense a little underserved. It really shouldn’t be, though, because it was a performance for the ages.
Quarterback Ryan Lindley was 10-of-31 for 72 yards, an interception and several incompletions that missed their target by five or more yards. Beanie Wells and William Powell combined for 40 rushing yards on 19 carries. The team gained just 137 yards from scrimmage all day and 40 of those came on a fake punt run by safety Rashad Johnson. They didn’t convert any of their 15 third down opportunities nor a fourth down try in the first quarter that pretty much set the tone for where this game was going offensively.
“You gotta laugh to keep from crying,” wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald said, via Darren Urban of the team’s website.
Fitzgerald’s production has plummeted with Lindley on the scene. He had one catch for 23 yards on Sunday and five catches for 65 yards in the last three games. You’re not going to win too often when your best player produces so little and the Cardinals have to find a way to get Fitzgerald the ball more often.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt said he considered making a move to John Skelton during Sunday’s game, but fell back on the old standby that he did what gave the team the best chance to win. Skelton, for his many flaws, has actually won during his career and a merely substandard quarterbacking performance would have probably gotten them a victory. Lindley couldn’t deliver that, though, and the Jets’ decision to switch quarterbacks when the Cardinals didn’t might have decided the game.