Arizona Cardinals Are Last Year's New York Giants, Only More Fun

Christopher WhalenCorrespondent IJanuary 20, 2009

As the sun can be a metaphor for a team's season, the rising and setting of the last two NFL Champions seasons, the Arizona Cardinals now have the scorching heat New York had—Super Bowl Champions.

It's the "Greatest show under the sun" leaving no doubt that they deserved to be in the game of all games.

I'll leave the recap to the guys who watched the contest from down on the field.  Let their credentials handle the highlights.

What is the more interesting scene is how one team, cast off into the desert from day one, found ways to look like a team from a year ago.  

These defies-of-the-odds played the Super Bowl like they knew an inside joke and the doubters during the season were just jokers.

If you can believe the flea-flicker pass from Kurt Warner to Larry Fitzgerald that led to a touchdown in the NFC championship game, you should have no trouble believing this story.

From day dreamers to the "real deal."  Arizona and New York each would scale the mountain of make believe, the chances everyone else was giving them to end up winners.

Look at these two respectable teams but with disrespect in your eyes now. You are much like the odds makers, media, most fans of football before the 2007 and 2008 seasons began. New York stood as a 30-to-1 shot to win SB XXLII last year. The now soaring Cardinals, you will find them nestled in as 45-to-1 birds prior to this season.

People doubted Eli.  People doubted Kurt. 

Manning was getting "old" in New York.  Warner was plain getting old.

It's not a stretch that these team's share some of the same magic.  Their quarterbacks were teammates not that far back.

As finishes go, the Giants won some big road tests to end the regular season. Hopes seemed finished for the Cards, who lost four of the final six pre-playoff games.

Neither team was starting to see its band wagon garner attention come wildcard time.

Distractions were both a part of each season, as both slew their "giants" to get to the big game.  You could get technical and say the Cardinals did not have to slay any Giants.

As warriors of the road go, the Giants had that moniker. Take the other side of the road and you have the Cardinals flying steady at home all season.  Seemingly arduous odds followed the teams when they would go out of their "comfort zone" and travel, either to home confines of the Meadow lands or to anywhere that was not in the desert. 

Arizona's players and a good sampling of its fans can feel like a kid again.

Kurt Warner did just what Eli Manning has done: Force everyone with a camera and tape recorder to chew on his sound bites.  

Heading into the last two Super Bowls questioned would arise as to whether both underdog defenses would hold up under the sometimes too bright lights of the game. New York and Arizona double unchecked the skepticism with stanch performances when needed.

If you loved the drama of last year's game, this one out does its predecessor. Fourth quarter stand with a bang (insert sack here). 

Pittsburgh and it's no.1 defense found themselves sacked by athletic play on the other side of the field.

New York once defeated a no.1 rated offense in order to claim what it needed for validation.

Just like Eli would see his career rejuvenated, Kurt can share in his jubilant revival.  The Super Bowl XLIII win could be what Warner needs to play until he is forty-three.

Anyone having a deja' vu experience but with a warmer twist?