3 reasons why the Cardinals will surprise critics in the playoffs

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Kyler Murray
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Kyler Murray /
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Arizona Cardinals
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Chandler Jones /

The Arizona Cardinals lost at home (again) and must now embark on a road trip to Los Angeles on Super Wild-Card Weekend. But is that necessarily a bad thing?

No, it’s never ideal to play on the road in the playoffs. But if you’re the 2021 Arizona Cardinals, a team that started off 7-0 and sputtered down the stretch, you can make an exception. Their performance at home? Laughable. On the road? Next to the blowout loss to Detroit Lions, they finished 8-1.

And in the process, they blew out the Los Angeles Rams. Without key starters in Week 9, they beat the San Francisco 49ers. The Cardinals then marched into AT&T Stadium and took care of an old divisional foe, the Dallas Cowboys. And if you want more fun, they crushed the Tennessee Titans, a team that happens to own the top seed in the AFC.

Yeah, the Cardinals are pretty good on the road. Not that they won’t lay another egg at SoFi Stadium on Monday, but if the 2021 season taught us anything, it’s that the Cardinals can get hot after a plane ride, whether it’s a cross country trip out east or a short ride into Southern California. Here are three reasons experts can’t count out the Cardinals.