The streak of incompletions started with 13:44 to go in the 2nd quarter.
1. Poor throw
-Ball thrown well behind Kendricks to his back shoulder; Kendricks can't make the catch. Mayock: "Like to see it on the other shoulder, make it a little easier on Kendricks."
2. Good defensive play
-Sam checked down to the runner and the pass was batted down at the line. Might have stared down the checkdown a little, but that's a very nitpicky quibble.
3. Poor read
-Bradford misreads zone coverage and leads Amendola forward while Danny correctly sat in soft spot of zone.
4. Poor throw
-Bradford buries this one. Mayock after replay, "I guess he just threw it in the dirt, eh?"
5. Questionable throw
-Sam throws high and forces Danny to climb the ladder to bring it down. Catchable, but no reason to make it that difficult for your receiver when he's beat the coverage.
-This is the play in which Danny was injured. Sam is well protected and puts the ball over the defender. Danny lays out to try and catch it but can't come up with it.
7. Bad route
-Sam puts the ball on the money but Givens falls down during route.
-This was a bonafide drop by Givens on the crossing route.
9. Good defensive play
-Sam goes to Givens on the left sideline go route, but defender makes a good play and cuts Givens off on the route.
10. Poor protection
-The Rams allowed too much immediate pressure on the screen pass, and Arizona blew it up.
11. Poor throw
-This was the Patrick Peterson interception that Bradford just threw up for grabs. Mayock: "That was Patrick Peterson's ball the whole time. I really hate this throw." Givens was running wide open over the middle on the drag route.
12. Questionable throw
-Bradford throws too far for Gibson on deep route down the left sideline that was well covered; Mayock points out that Kendricks had his man beat deep over the middle.
So during this twelve-play stretch, I count two plays blown up by the defense, two drops, one protection issue, one poor route, and six plays by Bradford in which I felt his throw or read was the primary cause of the failure on the play.
Maybe the distinction comes in how you view catchable balls. Is any catchable ball that isn't caught automatically the fault of the receiver? IMO, no, because it's more nuanced than that. In the case of #1 and #5, though they were technically catchable, ball placement was the biggest factor in why these passes weren't caught. It's easy to see a distinction between those two plays and, say, pass #8. Just my opinion, but thanks to a sick day from a stomach illness, I'm able to sit here and rewind each of these.
Again, these are minor points given the result of the game, which I think it goes without saying we're all thrilled about. And Sam deserves major praise for a number of things he did right in this game, the two touchdown throws especially. Coming back after this slump to throw the second touchdown pass couldn't be overstated in terms of its importance to the contest.
But if we're going to hold players accountable, then let's hold them accountable. That includes the guy throwing the passes, who IMO had a rough overall night but came through when it mattered.