Arizona Cardinals should play one game a year at Soldier Field if Chicago Bears move
If the Chicago Bears want to leave one of the most historic stadiums, then the Arizona Cardinals should take it over for at least one game per year.
As two of the oldest NFL teams in the NFL, the Arizona Cardinals and Chicago Bears were the first big rivalry in the NFL. The Cardinals, founded as the “Morgan Athletic Club” in 1898, eventually became the Chicago Cardinals, and the Bears started out as the Decatur Staleys in 1919.
Both played in Chicago up until the completion of the 1959 season when the Cardinals moved to St.Louis, and they’ve hardly been back since.
So with the tug of war going on between Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who wants to put a dome on the stadium, and Virginia McCaskey (who owns the Bears) and a possible relocation to a Northwest suburb called Arlington Heights, what’s the future of professional football in one of most iconic stadiums in all of professional sports?
Before I go any further, you may be wondering why I’m even writing this article. As an Arizona Cardinals fan who lives just off of the Red Line in Chicago, I know how much of the Cardinals’ history is here. Heck, the only time the Cardinals were ever NFL Champions was when they were in this town almost 100 years ago (ouch).
The Arizona Cardinals should pitch to Lori Lightfoot about playing one of their regular season games on the road in Chicago.
Now let me address the statement that everyone will say: “You’re taking away the Cardinals from Arizona; how dare you!”. But if this game is a road game that’s played on a neutral site against another team, does it really hurt?
The Cardinals got their taste of this in 2017 when they played the L.A. Rams in London and got drubbed by the score of 33-0, and that was designated as a home game, according to ESPN. They also have the game against the 49ers in Mexico City this year.
So what’s the hurt of being like the Buffalo Bills, who played a few games in Toronto? Or when the Green Bay Packers had a handful of games at Milwaukee County Stadium, where the Milwaukee Brewers played back in the day?
It would be a neat thing to see, especially for the 100th anniversary of the 1925 title. Yes, that’s the one mired in controversy; but what are we going to do? Be like that one annoying person on the phone who really wants to tell you what their plans are for 2047?
It would just be something cool to see happen. The problem for the Bears is that the McCaskey family doesn’t even own the land around the stadium, as it belongs to the Chicago Park District (!). That’s why attempts at putting in a sports betting facility somewhere close to Soldier Field haven’t gone through.
The park district doesn’t want that, yet the city approved a big-time casino in a nearby neighborhood that’s not too far from the stadium. Of course, every city has its own issues, but I think it would be cool to see the Cardinals return for a game or two back where it all began.
No, I’m not saying to move the Cardinals back to Chicago. Arizona has been their home, and I hope it stays that way. Not many teams these days can go back and play in the same city they were over 100 years ago.
There is a ton of history from when the team got started here, and I urge all Cardinals fans to dig into it. You’ll find some fascinating stories, and you can even visit their first-ever game field, at least what’s left of it.
So if the Bears don’t want to spend time in Chicago, the Cardinals should move in for a game or two.