Two seems to be a magic number in the Arizona desert.
The Cardinals currently boast four wins, a multiple of two, and twice as many wins as losses (two) through six weeks. Arizona forced four turnovers — also a multiple of two — Monday night in its victory over Dallas.
And thanks to the play of two former second-round picks, the Cardinals are soaring above the winds of victory on Tuesday. Safety Budda Baker was all over the field against Dallas, recording seven tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and a diving interception. His tackle of Ezekiel Elliott forced the first of two Elliott fumbles in the game, and produced Arizona’s first touchdown of the night in a game that eventually became a romp for the Cardinals.
“He is everywhere,” coach Kliff Kingsbury said, via the team’s official website. “You watch the game, and ’32’ shows up in every situation, all night. Such a tremendous player.”
Baker received a four-year, $59 million extension in August, raising plenty of eyebrows belonging to those who hadn’t seen elite-level play from the safety in his first three seasons. But on Monday night, Baker proved the Cardinals right in both selecting him in the second round of the 2017 draft out of Washington — where he was a consensus All-American and two-time first-team All-Pac-12 honoree — and in paying him handsomely.
“Budda,” defensive tackle Jordan Phillips said, “is worth every penny.”