Arians, Cardinals look for strong finish to season
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) Despite finishing this season with a losing record, the Arizona Cardinals are looking for a strong finish.
The Cardinals (6-8-1) have a chance to head into the offseason with back-to-back wins.
The Cardinals can also end the season with a 4-1-1 record against NFC West opponents with a win on Sunday.
Those results included a tie at home and a 34-31 win over the division champion Seattle Seahawks on the road last Saturday.
Winning at Los Angeles on Sunday might require contributions from all over the roster.
''Hopefully the ones (players) we bring in off the street, I know their names. We've been there before, too,'' coach Bruce Arians said. ''Looking forward to finishing up and then reflecting back.''
Arians mentioned a player whose name he didn't know after the player got a sack in a game while Arians was coaching in Kansas City.
''He'd just shown up on Tuesday (before the game). It was Jamaal Westerman. I won't forget it now. It was a big play in the game,'' Arians said. ''So those things happen.''
Arians gave his players Sunday, Monday and Tuesday off and he had a few days to enjoy the holidays and look over the game film from the win at Seattle.
The Cardinals' win was the Seahawks' first loss at CenturyLink Field this season and gave Arizona a 3-1 record in Seattle under Arians.
The Cardinals got six sacks from their injury-riddled defense, a blocked field goal and a tipped punt on special teams.
Arians was happy with the backup players who were pressed into action.
''Very pleased with the game. When you go back and look at the tape and a lot of guys stepped up and played extremely well, given their opportunities,'' Arians said. ''That's always what you're looking for when you have a next man up.''
Arians mentioned defensive tackle Rodney Gunter, who was listed as having played only 13 snaps, but had a sack and blocked a field goal.
He felt the offensive line, which has also been reconfigured because of injuries, provided good protection in Seattle for quarterback Carson Palmer.
''We had so many game balls to give out I can't remember them all,'' Arians said.
Arians was asked why his team has fared so well in Seattle.
''Confidence. When you win in a place, you have confidence, and you win again, you have a lot of confidence,'' Arians said. ''When our guys go up there with Carson Palmer, we feel very confident that we can win the ballgame.''
NOTES: The Cardinals placed safety Tony Jefferson (knee sprain) and guard Taylor Boggs (shoulder) on injured reserve. Jefferson made 14 starts and had a career-high 92 tackles. ... OT D.J. Humphries will not play in the season finale since he is still in the concussion protocol. ... Arians said he isn't sure who will step in at safety for Jefferson, but that he was satisfied with the play of rookie Harlan Miller, a sixth-round draft pick who had to move from cornerback against Seattle. ... Asked if he's ever coached in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, where the Rams play, Arians said he had with the Chiefs against the then-Los Angeles Raiders. ''Very interesting crowd,'' he said.
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