This weekend, the playoffs will arrive and the road to the Super Bowl in Miami, FL will begin. The Green Bay Packers head to Arizona for a second straight week, but it will be a different game, as all the starters will be playing this week. Here is a preview of the wild card game between the Packers and the Cardinals:
Here are a few quick facts between the two teams:
This is the third meeting, and second postseason meeting, between the two teams.
This is one of the oldest rivalries in football, going all the way back to 1921 when the Cardinals played in Chicago.
Green Bay leads the series between these two teams, 43-22-4, and has won the last six of seven regular season games.
The last time these two teams were in the playoffs was in 1983, and the Packers defeated the Cardinals 41-16.
The Arizona Cardinals won the NFC West this year with a 10-6 record and have the No. 4 overall seed in the playoffs. The Cardinals are the reigning NFC champs, and host this wild card game against the Packers on Sunday. Arizona has the No. 1 red zone offense in the league, and in order to win, they will have to prevail in the red zone.
The Packers will have to stop the Cardinals in red zone, or limit them to field goals and punts, to win this game.
Arizona will need good games out of Kurt Warner and Larry Fitzgerald, especially since Anquan Boldin might be out of the game with an injury he sustained in Week 17. The Cardinals will also need the defense to do well and hope that Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie can play, as he also sustained an injury in Week 17.
The Green Bay Packers are the No. 5 team in the NFC, are wild card team, and are 11-5. This team has won its last seven of eight games and is coming off a 33-7 win over the Cardinals in a game where many starters did not play.
This week's game will be different, though. It should be fun to watch as two of the top offenses in the game square off on Sunday.
Seventeen of the 22 Packers starters have playoff experience, and they will look to contribute heavily for this team. The Green Bay offense has been reeling, but the defense has played tremendously well this season. The Packers have the No. 1 rushing defense, the No. 5 passing defense, and the No. 2 overall defense.
Charles Woodson and Nick Collins, along with excellent linebackers, lead this team. Clay Matthews, a first-round draft pick, is an excellent tackler and can put pressure on the quarterback.
The Packers also have the No. 6 total offense, and Aaron Rodgers, a Pro Bowler, leads the team. Green Bay is the first team to have a 4,000-yard passer, a 1,200-yard rusher, and two 1,000-yard receivers. This team has plenty of weapons, and will look to use them effectively to defeat the Cardinals on Sunday.
The two teams will kickoff on Sunday at 3:40 on FOX. Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will call the game. Be sure to tune into this game, as it will be an exciting one to watch!