After trading a pair of field goals in the first half, the Patriots hoped to pull ahead at home in the third quarter against the visiting Arizona Cardinals. On the opening drive of the second half, the Patriots enjoyed a bit of success, driving the ball down to the 34-yard-line of the Cardinals before settling for a 51-yard field goal attempt from Stephen Gostkowski. The kick would be right down the middle, securing the Patriots their first lead of the night, 9-6.
After yet another unimpressive three-and-out, the Patriots were forced to punt from their own endzone. When rookie Nate Ebner failed to protect his left side, punter Zoltan Mesko's kick was blocked by Cardinals' reserve linebacker Quentin Groves, setting up Kevin Kolb and the Arizona offense on the 2-yard-line. Just three plays later, Kolb would connect with Andre Roberts for a touchdown to give the Cards a 13-9 lead.
The Patriots' offense remained unable to get anything going for the rest of the quarter as the underdog Cardinals took a 13-9 lead into the fourth.