Sports

Dominant defense, improving offense has Arizona on a 4-game win streak

  • Arizona Cardinals' Andre Roberts (12) celebrates his long pass reception against the Indianapolis Colts with teammate Larry Fitzgerald, right, during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz.  The Cardinals defeated the Colts 40-11. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

    Arizona Cardinals' Andre Roberts (12) celebrates his long pass reception against the Indianapolis Colts with teammate Larry Fitzgerald, right, during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals defeated the Colts 40-11. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)  (The Associated Press)

  • Arizona Cardinals defensive end Darnell Dockett (90) celebrates during the second half of an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts, Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals won 40-11. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

    Arizona Cardinals defensive end Darnell Dockett (90) celebrates during the second half of an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts, Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals won 40-11. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)  (The Associated Press)

  • Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians, right, and Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano embrace after an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz.  The Cardinals defeated the Colts 40-11. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

    Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians, right, and Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano embrace after an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals defeated the Colts 40-11. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)  (The Associated Press)

Arizona's defense has been strong all season. Now the offense has joined the party.

The result is a four-game winning streak that has the Cardinals in the thick of the NFC wild card race.

After its surprisingly one-sided 40-11 thrashing of Indianapolis on Sunday, Arizona (7-4) at least temporarily held the second wild card spot behind Carolina (8-3). San Francisco (6-4) played at Washington on Monday night. Arizona has lost to San Francisco but is the last team to beat Carolina. The Cardinals and 49ers meet in Arizona in their final game of the regular season.

Arizona coach Bruce Arians doesn't say "if" the Cardinals will make the playoffs. He says "when" they do. That's how confident he is in an ever-improving team that still has a rough road ahead.