CARDS WIN! 3 big takeaways from the Arizona Cardinals' rout of the Jets on Monday Night Football

Posted at 8:39 PM, Oct 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-18 00:07:43-04

The Arizona Cardinals won their second straight game and improved to .500 on the season in convincing fashion on primetime television.

Led by a ridiculous performance by David Johnson, the Cards (3-3) earned an easy 28-3 win over the New York Jets (1-5) on Monday Night Football at University of Phoenix Stadium.

Here are three big takeaways from the victory.

1. That's not nice, David.

The Jets came into Monday night allowing an NFL-low 68 rushing yards per game and 3.0 yards per carry. 

Then, the Jets were introduced to David Johnson. The second-year running back had a 58-yard TD run in the first quarter -- the longest run of his career -- and followed that up with two more touchdowns, making him the first man to run for three TDs against the Jets in five years.

Click here for more on what was a record-setting night for Johnson, who has made a clear-cut argument to be called the NFL's best running back.

2. Defense does the job.

Yes, it came against the struggling Jets, but he Cardinals' defense played its best game of the season Monday, allowing just 33 rushing yards and forcing a pair of fourth-quarter turnovers.

First, there was this hit and subsequent interception by D.J. Swearinger.

And then, Tyrann Mathieu capped the night off with his first pick of the season.

If this defense shows up once again in six days when the Cardinals host 4-1 Seattle, they could find themselves right back in the thick of the NFC West Division race.

3. Palmer picks it up in the second half.

After missing last Thursday's game at the 49ers with concussion symptoms, Carson Palmer returned to action Monday night -- and after looking a bit rusty in the first half, the 36-year-old quarterback turned it on in the second.

For the game, Palmer completed 23 of 34 passes for 213 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions -- but he looked especially good on a fourth-quarter drive that ended in a TD pass to Michael Floyd. On that drive, Palmer completed 6 of 8 passes for 70 yards.

The bad news: Palmer left after that drive with a hamstring strain and didn't return, though coach Bruce Arians said he doesn't think the injury is serious. If the Cardinals are going to beat Seattle on Sunday, they'll need Palmer on the field and looking as productive as he was in the second half Monday night.