Cardinals Invite Packers To Feel Over-Confident

January 4, 2010 by

While the Cardinals pieced together a calculated patchwork of backups and starters on pitch counts, the Packers played three quarters of the game as if the outcome mattered. Only time till tell which strategy was the right one, but there were clearly two entirely different approaches to yesterday’s game between Green Bay and Arizona.

Green Bay chose their poison: momentum, flow, sync and confidence, wanting to start the postseason on a roll . Arizona selected their strategy: to rest players, hold their cards close to their vest so as to reveal virtually nothing.59219413

The result is that Cardinals fans are quick to point out that it appeared the Arizona players didn’t care, among other valid concerns. Critics will say they were lethargic and outmatched even when the starters from both squads were on the field.

I contend that this was all part of Ken Whisenhunt’s master plan. As ESPN’s Mike Sando pointed out, if you were paying close attention to his face during the postgame press conference it was very much a smirk. It is as if he is more than just simply unfazed by the game’s outcome—Whisenhunt actually seemed pleased by the worst defeat any team of his has suffered.

It is almost as if the Cardinals were intentionally inviting the Packers to have so much success that it would give them a sense of over-confidence heading into the game that really matters—next weekend’s first round of the playoffs. Like leading prey into a dark cave.

Offensively it was all vanilla, and defensively Aaron Rodgers was un-pressured, Arizona’s bread and butter this season. Rodgers has been sacked a league-high 50 times this year while the Cardinals are tied for third in team sacks, yet the blitz button was paused so as not to reveal any aggressive packages.

No worries Cardinals fans. Arizona has not lost two back-to-back games all year.

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    19 Responses to “Cardinals Invite Packers To Feel Over-Confident”
    • Greg Watts says:

      I was surprised that Green Bay played so hard on Sunday considering that with every snap, they were giving away just a little bit more of their game plan. Now Arizona has a blueprint to beat the Pack, while the Pack can’t be quite sure of what to expect from Arizona.

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Me too Greg! My two big concerns are injuries to DRC, Boldin and Calais Campbell that may limit them or rule them out entirely, and that even knowing what the Packers might do doesn’t mean AZ can stop them. One more idea about the chess match is that maybe McCarthy had them play hard running plays they won’t run next weekend, maybe he will call all new plays next time as well. Thats what I would be doing if I were the Packers coach.

    • Todd says:

      I was watching a show here in Phoenix that recaps the game and talks to the players……they all say that it will be an intense passing contest between Rodgers and Warner. We didn’t give away all our secrets……but we did receive a few injuries. I’ll sleep better when they decide if Boldin and DRC are going to play. I say let them rest and get strong…….
      we will need them in Round 2.

      AZ 27-GB 17……..GO CARDS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Chris Farmer says:

      I am hopeful CC can go with a cast on, DRC looked the worst hurt but may be the least in actuality and should be limited but still start, and Boldin I would think will play no matter what. We’ve seen him play with a high ankle sprain before, and although I don’t know if this is what his ankle issue is, if he is just gimpy he will still be able to catch balls. maybe the Cards could lean on Doucet more if that is the case. Early is really coming on lately, I like what I see.

      I think the Cards take this one too. I think the D in particular is going to be amped….

    • Todd says:

      Makes me feel better every time I read your stuff. I guess that is why you are a writer and I am not.

    • Chris Farmer says:

      I’ll take that compliment any day of the week Todd, thanks man. I do typically put on my rose colored glasses and sip ice cold Cardinals Kool-Aid while writing though hahaha.

    • Todd says:

      Just heard on the radio this morning, CC was seen wearing a cast with a sling………but he will be playing on Saturday :-)

    • Todd says:

      I meant Sunday………..

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Thx for the update Todd, can’t wait for the game!

    • Lenny says:

      The Cardinals cannot even sell out their own stadium, when you all walk into your seats on Sunday you will be welcomed to Lambeau West!!!!!! There were major blunders in the game plan of the Cardinals on the last reg. season game beginning with the extra tickets sold for a meaningless game as you all called it. McCarthy knew what he was doing and he didnt show anymore in that game than he did in the pre-season matchup. He simply just stirred up that Arizona Packer fan base sillies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Someone has given you some misinformation Lenny. I apologize on their behalf.

    • Lenny says:

      Chris exactly what was I misinformed about????

      Is it not true that the last week of the season there were 4000 extra seats in that stadium in which tickets were sold in preperation of the Fiesta Bowl? Which there was and I am not saying the game didn’t sell out because I am sure it did.

      However Whiz treated the game as meaningless and treated the home fans in attendance to a complete disappointment!!!

      I was simply implying that McCarthy’s game plan was appropriate considering the circumstances, players managed to reach escalators in their contracts and also has excited the Packers fan base in AZ. Knowing that a playoff game would be played there the following weekend I would expect an even better turn-out by the cheeseheads in that state.

      And as of this morning there were still tickets available for that game. If Cardinal fans were so excited about this game it would seem to me that tickets would sell out within the first 48 hrs or less.

      So what exactly am I misinformed on again!

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Actually Lenny, you are contradicting yourself. You did say that they can’t even sell out their own stadium. To which I replied, you have been misinformed.

      I respectfully disagree that Whiz’s game plan was a bad one. As he said, and I agree, ultimately the decision both coaches made in Week 17 will be judged after this game’s outcome. If the Cardinals lose there will be some substance to being critical of his approach, but if they win the criticisms will fade into the distance.

      I applaud McCarthy’s approach, I would have done the same thing. Kudos to them for accomplishing their goals, but again, that will not feel like an accomplishment if they lose. By the same token, if they win, their coarse of action will be congratulated more heartily, as it should be.

      To answer your last question, I would say you were misinformed about:

      1)The Cardinals cannot even sell out their own stadium, when you all walk into your seats on Sunday you will be welcomed to Lambeau West!!!!!!
      2) There were major blunders in the game plan of the Cardinals on the last reg. season game beginning with the extra tickets sold for a meaningless game as you all called it.
      3) He simply just stirred up that Arizona Packer fan base sillies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      re: #3, IMO the Packers fan base in AZ will have absolutely nothing to do with the outcome of the game. If the Packers win, the cheeseheads will be happy, but I fail to see how this is a strong tactical influence on the actual game. It is underestimating the Cardinals fan base and how riled up they are going to be also so….??

    • Lenny says:

      As far as contradicting myself, I may have been vague in my first statement which apparently I would feel the need to clarify what I meant. And perhaps a little overzealous as well.

      I will agree it will be interesting to see how it all plays out and may be the start of a very interesting rivalry. We may not agree on certain things, but I do very much respect your approach. Good luck!!!

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Cheers Lenny, thanks for dropping by and commenting, good luck!

    • Todd says:

      I take it Lenny is a Cheese Head…………

      I heard about a lot of fans and personally now a few of them that sold their seats when the Vikings won. They already knew how things were going to be played out and took the opportunity to make a few bucks off of some desperate GB fans. They ended up watching the game from the cheap seats outside and drank some less expensive beer. I don’t think anyone thought it was going to be such a lop-sided score, but maybe that is what Ken wants them to think, Easy for GB win on Sunday. Got news for ya……….not gonna happen.
      If you saw any of the post game interviews, Ken had a little smirk on his face as if to say, “We’re not out of it yet”. Not a cocky smirk, just the kind that says “remember last season?”

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Hopefully Todd, the possibility of not having a healthy Boldin, DRC or CC won’t hurt us too badly. And make no mistake, the Packers are a good football team loaded with talent. The good thing is so are the Cardinals.

    • Todd says:

      Here is something good to read. Local radio sports analyst take on things.

    • Chris Farmer says:

      Good read, thanks Todd.

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