The Saints and Cardinals aren’t heading to the playoffs, but that didn’t stop them from playing an entertaining game today.
In a back-and-forth battle that had a little of everything, a four-touchdown day from Saints quarterback Drew Brees propelled the Saints to a 48-41 win over the Cardinals.
Brees was outstanding, passing for 389 yards and no touchdowns, with Brandin Cooks having 186 receiving yards. The Cardinals got 318 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions from quarterback Carson Palmer and 108 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns from running back David Johnson, but it wasn’t enough to keep up with the high-scoring Saints.
A highly questionable penalty late in the game will have plenty of people talking this week: The Cardinals were flagged for a hit to Brees’ head in what seemed to be a case of the officials flagging the Cardinals just for playing football. That will be this week’s officiating controversy.
It was the first NFL game this season in which both teams scored at least 40 points. It was also the highest-scoring NFL game since the Saints beat the Giants 52-49 last year.
The Cardinals are mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. The Saints are technically still alive, but realistically they have almost no chance. Still, this was a fun game to watch. With the NFL season coming to a close, that’s all we can ask for from teams with losing records.