A year ago, the New York Giants stunned the world by defeating the perfect New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. Now the underdog Arizona Cardinals hope do the same to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLIII.
Like the Giants, the Cardinals came into this postseason as the team everyone thought would lose in their first playoff game. It didn't happen. The Cardinals beat the Atlanta Falcons 30-24. The response by fans was that the Falcons were good, but not that good.
They could see how the Cardinals could beat them, but they won't win their next game.
Then they were pitted against the Carolina Panthers, who were the second best team in the NFC. Again, the Cardinals were not given a chance, and again they came out on top. They crushed the favored Panthers with a 33-13 defeat. This gave them a date with the Eagles in the NFC championship game.
The Eagles were on a run of their own. On the last day of the season, they were still in playoff contention, but it was unlikely that they would go. They not only had to win, but all of the other Wild Card teams had to lose.
Sure enough it happened, and the Eagles fought their way through the playoffs and knocked off the defending champs, the New York Giants. Now, these two teams who were not supposed to be there were a win away from the biggest event of the year: the Super Bowl.
By now fans had learned that you can't count the Cardinals out, so there was no mass prediction for this game. There was one thing that hinted at the result though. The game was seen as a historical game.
The last time the Cardinals won a championship it was the NFL championship over the Philadelphia Eagles.
This game went the same way. The Cardinals defeated the Eagles 32-25 and punched their ticket to the team's first Super Bowl, where they will have to keep up their offensive game to win.
They will play the Pittsburgh Steelers, who were considered the favorites from the AFC to go to the Super Bowl. Pittsburgh is built around defense. While they don't score as much as some other teams do, they don't let their opponents score much either.
They matched up with the also defensive Baltimore Ravens in the AFC championship game, which they won 23-14. They will have to do the same thing to the Cardinals if they want to win. If they keep Arizona from scoring, then they will have a chance to win the game.
The game should be an exciting one, as the most successful franchise in football history plays arguably the worst one in the biggest game of the year. One defensive and one offensive. Some say, "The best defense is a good offense." Others say the reverse. Maybe this year we will know the answer.
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