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Two Teams Walk into a Stadium, One has Something to Play for

Posted By Thomas Mitchell On Dec 22 2012 @ 8:12 pm In Arizona Cardinals,NFL | No Comments

Glendale , Az- After getting a win in what seemed to take months (oh wait, it really did take that long), the Arizona Cardinals hope to take advantage of the slumping Chicago Bears this Sunday. Both teams have disappointed their fans this season, but the Bears still have time to change that with the playoffs to fight for.

The Cardinals are playing purely for pride and job security at this point, but a win at home against the Bears would please us Arizonans who get sick of all the Chicagoans who now call Arizona home. There’s a lot of them here, always talking about how great Chicahhhgo is. I’m not disputing that, but go back there and freeze your ass off if it’s so great.

On top of Cubs and Bears fans unwavering but sometimes-annoying enthusiasm, the last time Chicago came into Phoenix was the infamous “They are who we thought they were!” game. Although it did give Coors Light some great commercial material, it still wasn’t exactly the proudest moment in team history. A win from the underdog Cardinals would let us natives stick our chest out for a couple days, but that is a very tough task for this offense.

After playing at an other-worldly level, Chicago’s defense has started too cool down a little. After getting deflated at home by Russell Wilson and losing the division crown to Green Bay last week, expect Charles Tillman and those boys to turn it up against a quarterback who’s got 0 touchdowns and 6 interceptions on his season resume. Even with Brian Urlacher still out with a hamstring injury, Chicago’s defense should control most of this game.

Last week Patrick Peterson didn’t shy away from talking about his matchup with Calvin Johnson, and while Johnson did continue his streak of 10 catch/100 yard performances, Peterson played extremely well. A matchup with another physical freak of nature like Brandon Marshall won’t be much easier, but if Peterson continues his high play then Bears QB Jay Cutler and his tendency to stare at Marshall too much could be taken advantage of.

Cutler and Bears RB Matt Forte will decide how well this team plays tomorrow. If Forte can effectively gain 4, 5, or 6 yards for 4 quarters and Jay Cutler is successful in spreading the ball around, this team will flourish. Good thing Bears Offensive Coordinator Mike Tice’s ineptitude usually screws up the team’s chemistry.

Arizona’s offense is obviously the x-factor for tomorrow’s game. If it can keep pace with Chicago’s and not screw up too big the game will be tight. Chicago’s defense is one of the better units at forcing turnovers in recent history, and that is what will ultimately ruin Arizona’s chances at winning this game. Just seeing the team play hard and competitive football for the whole game would be good enough for me, because I expect a 27-13 win tomorrow in Chicago’s favor.

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