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Bruce Arians reverses course, says he's not to blame for loss

TEMPE, Ariz. -- One day after Cardinals coach Bruce Arians shouldered the blame for a busted fourth-and-1 call that contributed to the Cardinals' 31-21 loss to the Houston Texans, he reversed course.

"I take all that s--- back I said yesterday," Arians said during his Monday afternoon news conference. "That was a damn good call, and we busted an assignment at the point of attack. That was an easy pickup."

Arians said offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin had designed a "hell of a play," but the blocking assignments weren't executed properly by the interior of Arizona's offensive line.

"He blocked the wrong damn guy," Arians said.

He added: "They did not whoop us up there, we just turned them loose. I take everything I say back."

With Arizona facing a fourth-and-1 from its own 35 yard line and trailing 24-21 with 6 minutes, 33 seconds left in the game at NRG Stadium on Sunday, Arians ordered a handoff to running back Adrian Peterson. He was stopped for a 1-yard loss, and the Texans took over possession on downs. They scored on their first play of the ensuing drive to go up by 10 with the score.

"It's very simple: I cost our team the game," Arians said after Sunday's game. "Trust is a funny thing sometimes when you can't get it to fit. You deserve to lose, especially when you make the decision I made and the play I called.

"So, there's your headline; you can write it."

Arians said he trusted Peterson to get the first down and "felt really good about" calling a run play in that situation instead of a quarterback sneak or punting it.

Arians said Monday that he considered a quarterback sneak but avoided the play because he had never seen quarterback Blaine Gabbert run one.

"A lot of quarterbacks can, a lot can't," Arians said. "Same blocking on the quarterback sneak as the play we handed it off. So I'd give it to Adrian right there."

Gabbert will get his second straight start for the Cardinals on Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars, his former team.

Arians said Drew Stanton's injured right knee has improved, but "he's still not as healthy as he was before."

"We'll stick with Blaine and watch Drew get healthy and then make a decision as we go forward, but we'll stick with the way it is right now," he said.