Arians beats old team as Cards rout Colts 40-11Posted: Updated:
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) -- Arizona coach Bruce Arians faced his old team and showed no mercy.
Carson Palmer threw two touchdown passes to Larry Fitzgerald, Karlos Dansby returned an interception 22 yards for a score and Arians' Cardinals won their fourth in a row with a 40-11 rout of the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday.
Arians beat the team that propelled him to coaching prominence last season, when he took over as Colts interim coach while Chuck Pagano fought leukemia.
Fitzgerald caught five passes for 52 yards, becoming the youngest player in NFL history to reach 11,000 yards receiving.
Arizona's Michael Floyd had his second straight 100-yard receiving day with seven catches for 104 yards for the Cardinals (7-4).
Andrew Luck threw for 163 yards, but had only 84 through three quarters as the Colts (7-4) fell behind 34-3.
Jay Feely kicked four field goals in Arizona's highest-scoring game in three years, including a 21-yarder in the final minutes with the outcome long decided.
Palmer, coming off a 419-yard passing performance against Jacksonville, completed 26 of 37 for 314 yards and, for the second week in a row, threw no interceptions.
The Colts' touchdown came on Luck's 17-yard pass to Coby Fleener with 10:26 to play.
Arians got the Arizona job largely because of his performance as interim coach of the Colts last season.
Arians, the Indianapolis offensive coordinator, became interim head coach when Pagano was stricken with leukemia. Under Arians, the Colts went 9-3 en route to the playoffs and he was the coach of the year.
Palmer threw touchdown passes to Fitzgerald of 4 and 26 yards, then Dansby intercepted Luck and returned it for a touchdown as the Cardinals blew open a 27-3 halftime lead.
Arizona took the opening kickoff and went 80 yards in 10 plays, Palmer hitting Fitzgerald with a 4-yard fade pass for the touchdown. The Cardinals had no third downs on the drive.
Arizona had a chance to lengthen the lead but the drive stalled at the Colts 10, then Sergio Brown blocked Jay Feely's 28-yard field goal attempt. It ended a string of 17 consecutive field goals for the Arizona kicker.
Adam Vinatieri kicked a 27-yard field goal to cut it to 7-3 with 1:15 left in the first quarter.
But Arizona's offense got it rolling again. Palmer connected with Floyd for 29 yards to the Indianapolis 26.
On the next play, Palmer, hit as he threw, lofted a pass to the end zone, where Fitzgerald beat two defenders to make the catch for the score to make it 14-3 with 13:29 left in the half.
Moments later, Luck, under pressure from Darnell Dockett, threw toward Fleener. But Dansby stepped in front of the tight end, intercepted and returned it 22 yards for the touchdown to put Arizona up 24-3 with 7:55 left in the second quarter.
It was Dansby's first touchdown since his 17-yard fumble return in overtime ended the Cardinals' 51-45 wild-card playoff victory over Green Bay on Jan. 10, 2010.
Arizona converted three third-and-long situations in their third-quarter touchdown drive.
On third-and-10 from the Colts 25, Vontae Davis was called for pass interference on Fitzgerald, a 20-yard penalty to the Colts 5. Rashard Mendenhall ran it in from there and Arizona had a 34-3 lead with 5:57 left in third.
Through three quarters, the Cardinals had 346 yards to the Colts' 96.
Fitzgerald is 30 years, 85 days. Randy Moss had been the youngest to reach 11,000 at 30 years, 222 days.
AP NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org