first_img D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation And, as the Giants showed us this year (and the Cardinalsin 2008), you do not have to be a great team to make it tothe Super Bowl. Hell, you don’t have to be a great team towin the Super Bowl. You only have to be good enough tomake the playoffs, and anything can happen from there.Now, this isn’t meant to say you should be making hotelreservations for New Orleans and take vacation time aroundthe weekend of February 3rd. While the Cardinals may befavored to land PeytonManning, they are not the favorites to win the NFCWest – let alone the NFC. What they are, though, is a decent team with room toimprove. What they are is a team that should have beatenthe eventual Super Bowl champions. What they are, on February 6, 2012, is a team not unlike30 other squads in the NFL, all looking to knock off theGiants, which is something the Cardinals should have donelast year. The good news is they’ll get their shot. On October 2, 2011, the Arizona Cardinals lost a game theyshould have won. Leading 27-17 with just more than five minutes left, theyhad the New York Giants on the ropes, staring a 2-2 record– as well as legitimacy – in the face.Of course, we all know what happened from there.The defense caved, Victor Cruz “gave himself up” and theGiants scored a pair of touchdowns to take the lead. TheCardinals drove as far as the New York 30 with less than aminute left, but a fourth-down slant to Fitzgerald fellincomplete. Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Comments   Share   Game over, Giants win. Looking back, did New York really have the look of a SuperBowl champion? Of course not. There’s a reason they wonjust nine regular season games, as well as why they arenot even close to being the favorites to win the2013 Super Bowl.None of that will take the shine off the Lombardi Trophythe team just won, nor mean some less-fortunate peoplearound the world won’t be receiving a shipment of shirtsthat say the New England Patriots won this year’s SuperBowl. What it does mean is that the 2012 season hasofficially begun, and the Arizona Cardinals — a team thatshould have beat the Giants (and thereby kept them out ofthe playoffs) — has a chance to reach the big game forthe second time in five years. Crazy talk? Perhaps, as I did consume large amounts ofgood tasting-yet-bad-for me food Sunday, possibly leavingme to write through some sort of sugary euphoria. However, the Cardinals, one season after finishing 8-8,certainly seem capable of taking another step forward. Remember, this is a team that ended the 2011 season as hotas any in football. They found a defense, rediscoveredLarry Fitzgerald and rode into the offseason with beliefin what they’re doing. They could still use a QB…cough…Peyton Manning…cough…but otherwise seem to have everythinga team needs to compete in the NFL. Top Stories last_img

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