The 2010 season has been littered with inconsistencies, flaws, and seven losses. Part of the reason it hasn't felt like Cardinals-football to me, is the lack of a rivalry-game. As we all know, the Cardinals and 49ers rivalry has been one of the most heated exchanges between football teams during the last 4-5 seasons.
It could be the single border that separates the two teams, or the competitive edge of winning the NFC West. For three straight seasons, the Cardinals have opened the year against the 49ers, perhaps setting the tone for the rest of the season. This year, the Cardinals first match up with their red and gold rivals takes place twelve weeks into the season. So yes, as you've figured, I'm blaming the NFL schedulers for the Cardinals struggles.
With Thanksgiving still fresh in our memories, I found it only appropriate to be thankful for a renewed rivalry game to spark hope for the rest of the season. A fierce battle on Monday night in front of a home crowd is what the doctor ordered. With Seattle losing yesterday, the Cardinals slim hopes for a third consecutive division title are still alive. Unfortunately, the Rams defeated the Broncos, making next week's match up versus St. Louis a pivotal game should the Cardinals win tonight.
And that's just it -- getting past the 49ers. For years they've played well and matched up well against the Cardinals despite what their record showed. I expect nothing different tonight on national television. The 49ers are sporting the same 3-7 record as the Cardinals on a season that was filled with high expectations on their part. That's something that we as Cardinals fans are familiar with and I think the similar ties could make this an exciting Monday night game. At the same time, winning against a hated rival in front of your home crowd may jump start a run for the remainder of the season.
With players like Kurt Warner and Anquan Boldin out of the picture this year, the game could have a different feel to it. Regardless, I'm sure we'll see the same heated exchanges between players like we've grown accustomed to. If Ken Whisenhunt can orchestrate a victory at home against a team that is 0-4 on the road this season, he may do something greater for what's left of the season. Do you believe defeating the 49ers could be what the Cardinals need to get the ball rolling?