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3 big takeaways from the Arizona Cardinals' preseason loss to the San Diego Chargers

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Posted at 8:47 PM, Aug 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-19 23:47:18-04

Three big takeaways from the Arizona Cardinals' 19-3 loss at the San Diego Chargers on Friday night, dropping the Cards to 0-2 during preseason play:

1. Palmer and Stanton stunk.

Simple as that. Carson Palmer threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown and was fortunate he didn't throw another Friday night. Drew Stanton, who saw significant action, overthrew receivers and threw a pick of his own for the second straight game. 

It's another game in which the Cards' top two QBs have failed to impress -- even Palmer, who nearly threw an interception on his first pass of the game last week. They have two more games to get things going before the regular season begins, starting next Sunday at the Houston Texans.

Silver lining: Third-stringer Matt Barkley made some nice throws after going just 8 for 24 in Week 1 of the preseason. Against the Chargers, he completed 10 of 15 passes for 85 yards, and that includes a pair of dropped passes.

2. Brandon Williams turns it around.

Cardinals rookie cornerback Brandon Williams had a rough time in his first NFL action last week and got off to a difficult start vs. the Chargers, but the third-round pick hopefully built some confidence by making a couple big plays in the second quarter.

Williams looked sharp when he knocked away a pair of passes from Chargers QB Kellen Clemens, including a deep throw late in the first half. Williams, who will try to fend off veteran CB Justin Bethel for a starting job going into the regular season, showed flashes of the kind of speed and awareness he has shown throughout training camp, and that's certainly reassuring.

3. A shout-out to Jaron Brown.

We've got to mention just how sensational Jaron Brown has been. The fourth-year pro, who has been a member of the Cardinals since he signed with the team as an undrafted free agent in 2013, has been arguably the team's top player throughout training camp, and he's was stellar Friday night, as well.

Minus wide receivers Larry Fitzgerald (minor knee injury) and John Brown (concussion), Jaron Brown made a pair of outstanding catches in the first half for a combined 40 yards. He hasn't seen a ton of regular-season action, and that may ultimately be the case again this year -- but he's one of the reasons the Cards have arguably the deepest receiving corps in the entire NFL.