Eagles vs. Cardinals: What they are saying on Monday
By Scott Allen
The Eagles and Cardinals are going to play in the most unexpected NFC Championship in a long time, so you bet there are a lot of people chiming in on the match up and the in’s and out’s of each team.
Jim Rome of ESPN’s Rome is Burning said on his show this afternoon that “we all owe Arizona an apology, but they don’t want it.”
He’s got that right. The Cardinals don’t want you to join the band wagon now. No need to apologize for your skepticism (which is putting it nicely) of the Cardinals. The Cardinals would rather now just continue talking up the other team and continue to serve them up as the underdog, which by the way, the oddsmakers are. Eagles are 3 point favorites as of Monday.
Mike Sando of ESPN.com says the loss of Stephen Spach should not be overestimated, but said he was playing above expectations.
Agreed. Stephen Spach wasn’t the end all to be all by any stretch, however with tight ends Leonard Pope and Ben Patrick nursing injuries on and off all season, Spach was brought in mid-season and performed better than most, including yours truly, expected. He played big in the Atlanta game.
Phil Sheridan of The Philadelphia Inquirer says the hardest part of the Eagles job is complete now that they’ve conquered the New York Giants in The Meadowlands.
Hmm. Really? Sure, the Giants are considered a tough team at home. Carolina was tougher. Carolina went 8-0 at home this season and Arizona went in and manhandled them. Carolina was very close to beating the Giants just three weeks ago in New York. New York was not the same team over the past month that they were earlier in the season. The Eagles are on a roll, deserve every accolade. They are going to be a real tough team to beat this Sunday. Plus the Cards relish comments from the media like this. Seriously though, how do you go and write that after what transpired this weekend? Not only is this a continued dis-credit of the Cardinals, it also de-values what the Eagles still have to do. I don’t think the Eagles will come in thinking the hardest part if over. The second they start thinking that way, they will be done, and quick. Fact is, they won’t take Arizona lightly and neither should anyone else at this point.
Bill Price of The Bitter Bill Blog on nydailynews.com says that Cards quarterback Kurt Warner, win or lose on Sunday, should be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
With a win Sunday, he said Warner should be in no matter what, saying “lock” is too strong a word. Lose on Sunday, he details all the reasons why he should still get in. Again, agreed. Kurt Warner has helped turn this franchise around. He is taking his team to the NFC Championship after decades of futility. At 37 years old, he looks and plays more like he is 27.
Steve Wyche of NFL.com says that teams have started to backoff from blitzing the Cardinals because now Arizona is able to get good reads on opponents blitzes.
The Cards offensive line has not only done a really good job in these playoffs of protecting Warner and opening holes for Edgerrin James and Tim Hightower, they’ve been able to recognize blitzing schemes of their opponents. When a team can recognize that on a consistent basis, you reduce sacks and give your quarterback time to find open receivers. You also can quickly change an opponent’s game plan. When you are able to accomplish that, you’ve got a head start to the winners circle.
Can’t wait to see how the rest of this week plays out leading up to Sunday.