Larry Fitzgerald used to be the best receiver in the NFL. Deandre Hopkins currently is the best receiver in the NFL.
The Cardinals are spoiled with guys who catch the ball. Hopkins solidified his mythical title by somehow hauling in the Hail Mary of Hail Mary’s yesterday at State Farm Stadium. He and three Buffalo Bills went up for the ball heaved by Kyler Murray with two seconds remaining in the game with the Cardinals down by four. Hopkins out jumped everybody to the ball and somehow secured it as he fell to the ground a few yards into the endzone. The highlight will be played forever.
The Cardinals beat the Bills 32-30 and improved to 6-3 on the season.
This game was a rollercoaster. Buffalo played very well in the first half, and Arizona played very well in the third quarter. Nobody seemed to want to the win the game in the fourth quarter.
The Cardinals, led by Murray’s two rushing touchdowns had a 26-23 lead late in the game when the Bills turned a horrible half into a miracle of their own when Josh Allen found Stephon Diggs in the corner of the endzone with under a minute to play to take a 30-26 lead. That’s when the magic happened for the Big Red.
Murray had two timeouts to work with and got to about midfield before exhausting them. There was 11 seconds left, probably enough time for two plays. Hopkins needed only one.
Give a lot of credit to Murray for avoiding what would have been a game-ending sack as he rolled to his left with multiple Bills on his tail. He heaved the ball just shy of the 50-yard line and then the world stood still until Hopkins fell to the ground with the ball. The Cardinals fan base will never be still anymore. They will always have this magical play.
In 1974, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Roger Staubach “invented” the term “Hail Mary Pass” when his bomb to Drew Pearson was completed as time ran out in Minnesota against the Vikings in the playoffs. After the game, Staubach told reporters that after he let the pass go, he said a Hail Mary. The term stuck and there have been many significant Hail Mary plays since, but this one feels a bit bigger than most of the others.
No, this didn’t win a playoff game, but it certainly helped the Cardinals chances of getting there. The Cardinals have a short week now because they play in Seattle on Thursday. They might not need a plane to get there, cloud nine will do just fine.