first_img – / 40 That play went to Janis as well, and it was that 60-yard reception — on 4th-and-20 — that kept the Packers’ drive alive and set up the Hail Mary.The cornerback beaten on that play was Justin Bethel, a player whom many eyes are on now that he’s in a starting role for the first time in his career.Bethel said he thought he had help from a safety over the top, but that wasn’t the reason for why the big completion was made.“I don’t know what was happening,” he said Tuesday. “I knew it was a Cover 2, so I was playing off thinking — probably thinking too much was the problem — thinking they might try to run something to the sticks just to get the first down and I was a little too far behind.“I looked back for the ball once I saw him (Janis) slow up, looking, thinking the ball was still in the air, and as soon as I looked he caught it. So I turned around, he already caught it. I definitely should have been closer to him, but you know, stuff like that happens sometimes.”The play stood out as the biggest gaffe in what was at times a difficult game for the fourth-year pro, who is seeing plenty of passes come his way as teams look to avoid Peterson on the other side. Understandably, Bethel seemed to be taking things pretty hard after the game, which leads to the question of whether there is reason to worry about his mindset going forward. TEMPE, Ariz. — When people talk about the catch that nearly cost the Arizona Cardinals a win last Saturday, they will most surely be pointing to the 41-yard Hail Mary caught by Green Bay’s Jeff Janis over Patrick Peterson and Rashad Johnson in the end zone as time expired.It makes sense, since that play– plus the extra point — sent the game into overtime.Lost in that conversation, however, will probably be an even longer pass that was completed a few plays earlier. Bethel is not the only member of the team that got a bit of a reprieve when Fitzgerald took a shovel pass into the end zone from five yards out, allowing the Cardinals to escape with a 26-20 win and move on to the NFC Championship Game.Quarterback Carson Palmer threw a pair of interceptions — one of which was in the end zone — and was off on more throws than everyone is used to seeing.Arians himself was criticized for his team taking to the air on a 2nd-and-8 from the Green Bay 22-yard line with just more than two minutes remaining. The incomplete pass stopped the clock, and ultimately left the Packers enough extra time to pull off their end-of-regulation rally.But both quarterback and coach have enough of a track record to where people are confident in their abilities; Bethel is not afforded the same luxury.While the 25-year-old has all the size and tools necessary to become a reliable cornerback, until he puts it all together, the question as to whether or not he will is not going anywhere.The only way to make his struggles a thing of the past is to move forward, and that means learning from his experiences.“Just finish, I guess,” he said of what he needs to learn. “When I see the receiver relax, I can’t relax. I’ve got to finish until I hear the whistle blow and just keep being able to move on to the next play because you never know what can happen on any play.” Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling “We’ll wait and see,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Monday. “This is the first time he’s had something to get over. As a coach and a player, until it happens, you never know how they’ll respond. Hopefully, he’ll respond in the right way.”Arizona needs Bethel to rebound because the team is fairly thin at cornerback. The season-ending injury to Tyrann Mathieu meant Jerraud Powers, normally a cornerback, needed to move inside, which opened up the spot for Bethel.A three-time Pro Bowler for his work on special teams, the team signed him to a three-year, $15 million contract extension in December because they saw his potential to grow into larger role on defense, too.If that is to happen, he will have to get past last Saturday’s struggles, which it seems like he has.“I was happy that we won, obviously; it was definitely a sigh of relief after Larry scored,” Bethel said. “I said, ‘Oh, thank you Jesus.’“I guess I handle things different than most people and it might come off as I’m down and depressed or whatever you want to say; I’m really hard on myself and at that time I was just like, I left some stuff out on the field and I felt like I could have played better. At the end the day we won the game and we had to move on and move on to the next game. After that night it’s over, I can’t do anything about it. Just be happy and celebrate with my teammates and get ready for Carolina.” Comments   Share   Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires There’s little doubt Bethel will get plenty more chances. As long as he’s playing opposite Peterson, quarterbacks are going to target him. Whether they are picking on him or not really depends on how well he is playing. But if nothing else, this crash course in cornerback 101 should help him continue to grow.“I think you never really stop growing,” Bethel said. “There’s always things you can tweak and you can be better at. For me, people have been saying to me before, the more targets you get the more experience you get from it.“It’s like a test and getting a lot of information at once and trying to take it all in at one time, so I enjoy it and I think at the end of the day it’s going to make me a better player.”And of course, the positive side of being thrown at as much as Bethel is and will be is that the more plays come your way, the more opportunities you have to come up big.“I had a couple chances, I just didn’t catch the ball,” he said of Saturday’s game. “Hopefully as time goes on, if I still keep getting those targets I’ll make those plays that come to me.” The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Top Stories Green Bay Packers wide receiver Jeff Janis (83) is knocked out of bounds by Arizona Cardinals cornerback Justin Bethel (28) during the first half of an NFL divisional playoff football game, Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.Required fields are marked *