Hall of Fame Game 2012: Cardinals and Saints Set to Square off in Preseason Open
The 2012 NFL season is already starting to take shape. After learning that the Giants will host the regular season opener on Sept. 5, Darren Urban reported on the Cardinals' official website that they will take on the Saints in August's Hall of Fame Game exactly one month prior:
All the Cardinals are heading there [The Hall of Fame], in fact, after it was announced Wednesday that the Cards will take part in the 2012 Hall of Fame game Aug. 5 in Canton, Ohio. The opponent will be the New Orleans Saints, who have long-time tackle Willie Roaf as part of the Hall’s 2012 induction class. The Cardinals will now have five preseason games instead of four.
With the exceptions of 1966 and 2011, the Hall of Fame Game has been played every year since 1962. It is held the day after the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and usually involves at least one team with an inductee in that year's class.
The Hall of Fame Game was the only actual on-field product that was cancelled as a result of 2011's lockout, as it was resolved in enough time to salvage the full preseason slate of games.
This will be the first appearance for the Cardinals since 1986, when they were still in St. Louis. In total, the franchise has played in the game three times. The Saints last played in the Hall of Fame Game in 2007 and have four total appearances.
The rest of the NFL will open their preseason schedule the following week.
ESPN's Trey Wingo is excited for the game, but seems to be getting ahead of himself:
Brees vs Manning? RT @AdamSchefter: Cardinals will play the Saints to kick off preseason on Sunday August 5 in the 2012 Hall of Fame Game— trey wingo (@wingoz) February 29, 2012
For now, let's just call it the Cardinals against the Saints. Time will tell what that means about the quarterback matchup.
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