I've held Sam Bradford to higher standards than most fans, and it through the first quarter of Sunday's win against the Arizona Cardinals, it looked like the St. Louis Rams starter was on his way to a rough outing. Bradford was 2-for-7 when he threw a terrible pass to Austin Pettis that Patrick Peterson picked off in the end zone. But he bounced back.
Bradford displayed his resiliency in the effort, helping the Rams grind to a pair of offensive touchdowns in the win. Whatever your opinion of Bradford, you certainly can't fault him for some tough play this week.
Head coach Jeff Fisher talked his quarterback's toughness up in his Monday afternoon press conference:
"He doesn't let those things bother him. He tried to make a play and it didn't happen. Peterson made a great play on the ball. But, he doesn't let those things bother him. He knows that he can come back and make a play, which he did. This is a tough defense and his numbers this year reflect how good they are, but at the same time, he made the plays when he got the opportunities to make the plays and make the good throws."
On the first drive after the one that ended with the interception, it was Bradford that got the offense moving. After an incomplete pass to Brandon Gibson, Bradford came out on second-and-10. He was back for third-and-10 with the Rams trailing 7-14. Then he hit Chris Givens for an 18-yard gain and a new set of downs, after a trio of Steven Jackson runs, Bradford's next pass was a 37-yard touchdown to Lance Kendricks, a play we broke down in depth on Monday.
Bradford's final stat line was mostly mediocre, but the overall numbers fail to take into account the fact that, as Fisher suggested, he made the throws he needed to make. Bradford needs to do that more regularly than he does, in my opinion, but he gutted out a solid performance this week against the Cardinals and deserves some credit.