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Cardinals 2014-2015 Outlook
The Arizona Cardinals are the definition of boom-or-bust this season. With players like Carson Palmer and Andre Ellington holding the fate of the team in their hands, an injury to one or both could cripple the offense.
On defense, the team will look to last year’s big-name signing John Abraham to step up and for this year’s free-agent splurge Antonio Cromartie to complement Patrick Peterson in the defensive backfield.
All Arizona Cardinals football games can be seen on one of the following television broadcasts depending on the team they are playing: Fox Sports, CBS, or ESPN. Tune into the Arizona Cardinals’ flagship stations ESPN Radio 860 and News Radio 620 KTAR on your AM dial to catch each Arizona Cardinals football game on the radio.
University of Phoenix Stadium
The Arizona Cardinals have played in 6 different stadiums during their existence. Currently, the Arizona Cardinals play in the University of Phoenix Stadium. The University of Phoenix Stadium was completed in August 2006 and the Arizona Cardinals played their first regular season home game there on September 10, 2006. The Arizona Cardinals defeated the San Francisco 49ers 34-27 in that game in a high scoring shootout. The University of Phoenix Stadium has a seating capacity of 63,500 fans, which can be expanded up to 72,800 people for certain special events.
The University of Phoenix Stadium is very unique in that it boasts a retractable translucent teflon roof that allows light to pass through it. The roof actually moves up and down on an incline, using a cable drive system. It takes approximately 15 minutes to open or close the roof. The University of Phoenix Stadium also boasts a fully retractable playing surface. The “tray” of grass sits on a foot of sand and the tray can be moved completely outside the southeast end of the stadium to allow the grass to absorb the light rays of the sun when the field is not in use. Outside the stadium, the franchise recently erected the “Pat Tillman Freedom Plaza” in honor of former Cardinals player Pat Tillman who was killed in combat in Afghanistan.
The University of Phoenix Stadium will also begin hosting college football’s annual Fiesta Bowl in January 2007. Every 4th year, the University of Phoenix Stadium will also host the BCS National Championship Game. In 2008, the University of Phoenix Stadium will host Super Bowl XLII and in 2009, the University of Phoenix Stadium will host the NCAA Men’s Division I basketball tournament.
University of Phoenix Stadium
Glendale, Arizona 85305
The Arizona Cardinals are a professional football team in the National Football League (the NFL). The Arizona Cardinals play in the National Football Conference (NFC) West Division with three other teams: the Seattle Seahawks, the St. Louis Rams and the San Francisco 49ers. The Arizona Cardinals have won 2 NFL Championships. University of Phoenix Stadium, located in Glendale, Arizona, hosts all Arizona Cardinals home games.
The Chicago Cardinals (1920-1959)
The Arizona Cardinals are one of the oldest continuous professional football teams in the United States of America. The original team dates back to 1898, when the Morgan Athletic Club, located on Racine Avenue on Chicago’s south side, formed a club team called the Racine Normals. Soon after beginning play, the club team changed its team uniforms to “cardinal red”, so the team also changed its name to the Racine Cardinals. In 1920, the Racine Cardinals were on the charter members of the NFL. At that time, the team became known as the Chicago Cardinals. The Chicago Cardinals, with the exception of the 1944 season, played in Chicago through the 1959 NFL season. In 1944, because of lack of players and funds during World War II, the Chicago Cardinals merged with the Pittsburgh Steelers and the team was known as the Card-Pitt. While in Chicago, the Cardinals played all of their NFL home games in one of 2 venues. The Cardinals franchise played their home games in Normal Park on the south side of Chicago from 1920 through 1921 and then again from 1926 through 1928. The Cardinals franchise played the majority of their NFL home games in Comiskey Park from 1922 through 1925 and then again from 1929 through 1959. During that time, the Chicago Cardinals shared Comiskey Park with one of Chicago’s MLB baseball teams, the Chicago White Sox.
The Cardinals franchise has never had much success as a professional football team. And for the first 40 years of its existence in the NFL, it had to compete directly with its fellow NFL member from the same city, the Chicago Bears. In the 1920’s, the Cardinals and Bears played each other 2 times each year. Each year, the NFL battles between the 2 Chicago franchises always seemed to have an impact on the NFL Champion. That decade, the Chicago Bears won an NFL Championship in 1921 and the Chicago Cardinals won an NFL Championship in 1925. After that 1925 NFL Championship, the Chicago Cardinals returned to their struggling ways by posting only 2 winning seasons during the next 20 years. The Chicago Cardinals had a losing record for 10 straight years, from 1936 through 1945. In 1932, Charles Bidwell, a Chicago Bears executive, purchased the team from Dr. David Jones, and the team has been run by the Bidwell family ever since. In 1947, the Chicago Cardinals won their 2nd and last NFL Championship with a 28-21 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles. That 1947 Championship team was led by legendary Quarterback Paul Christman and legendary Running Back Charley Trippi. The following year, the Chicago Cardinals lost only once all season long and returned to the NFL Championship game in a rematch with the Philadelphia Eagles. This time, however, fortune was on the side of the Eagles, as the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Chicago Cardinals 7-0 in a defensive struggle. For the next 11 years, the Chicago Cardinals endured another stretch of futility. The Chicago Cardinals recorded only 2 winning seasons during that span, and only won 33 total games during the 1950’s. As the team continued its steady decline and as the city of Chicago became more and more enamored with the Chicago Bears, which had won 6 NFL Championships from 1932 through 1946, the Chicago Cardinals franchise faced significant financial problems. As attendance continued to decline, the Bidwell family coordinated with the NFL to move the team from Chicago to St. Louis. This move likely saved the Cardinals franchise in the long run and also helped the NFL by creating a presence in the city of St. Louis to compete against the American Football League.
The St. Louis Cardinals (1960-1987)
In 1960, the Cardinals franchise moved to the city of St. Louis, Missouri. Initially, the St. Louis Cardinals played more competitively in St. Louis. During their first 11 years in St. Louis, the St. Louis Cardinals recorded six winning seasons and one .500 season. The St. Louis Cardinals never advanced to post-season play, however, because only 2 or 4 teams made the playoffs based on regular season record. After 3 consecutive losing seasons from 1971 through 1973, the St. Louis Cardinals finally advanced to post-season play when they finished first in the NFC East with a 10-4 record. In the Divisional round of the playoffs, the St. Louis Cardinals committed costly turnovers and were outscored 23-7 in the 2nd half en route to a disappointing 30-14 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. In 1975, the St. Louis Cardinals repeated as NFC East champs with an 11-3 record, but once again, they fell short in the playoffs. In the Divisional playoff game, the Los Angeles Rams jumped out to a 28-9 halftime lead courtesy of 2 interceptions returned for touchdowns by the Rams defense, and the St. Louis Cardinals could never recover from the early deficit. The Los Angeles Rams ultimately defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 35-23. For the next 12 years, the St. Louis Cardinals returned to their struggling ways and advanced to post-season play only once during that stretch, in the strike-shortened 1982 season. That season also ended with a first round playoff loss to the Green Bay Packers, 41-16. During its tenure in St. Louis, the St. Louis Cardinals never won a playoff game. Yet despite its poor play there, the St. Louis Cardinals .481 winning percentage in the city of St. Louis was by far the greatest winning percentage in franchise history in any of its other locations. In the city of Chicago, the Cardinals franchise recorded a .403 winning percentage, and in the city of Phoenix, the Cardinals franchise currently has a .347 winning percentage.
The St. Louis Cardinals played in Busch Stadium from 1960 through 1965. During this time, Busch Stadium was also the home of MLB baseball’s St. Louis Cardinals. In 1966, the St. Louis Cardinals moved to Busch Memorial Stadium which was specifically built for both St. Louis Cardinals NFL and MLB teams. When the Bidwell family could not secure a commitment from the city of St. Louis to build a new stadium for the St. Louis Cardinals NFL football team, he decided to move the team to the Arizona area.
The Arizona Cardinals (1988-Present)
In 1988, the Cardinals franchise moved to the city of Phoenix. The Phoenix Cardinals played their home games at Arizona State University football team’s home field, Sun Devil Stadium. Sun Devil Stadium had a seating capacity of 73,000 fans for home football games and the Cardinals management looked forward to large crowds in their new home. However, because the Arizona Cardinals remained in the NFC East division, there were few rivalry games as the Phoenix Cardinals continued to play east coast opponents like the New York Giants, Washington Redskins and Philadelphia Eagles. The Phoenix Cardinals rarely drew more than 35,000 to any of their home games, and as a result, only a handful of home games were televised in the local Phoenix, Arizona area (the NFL prohibited live broadcasts of the NFL games in the home team’s television network area if the game was not sold out). In an attempt to draw more attention to the Cardinals franchise, the Bidwell family proposed a name change from the “Phoenix Cardinals” to the “Arizona Cardinals” in order to encourage the residents of the entire state, not just the Phoenix area, to adopt the Cardinals as their “home” team. Although the name change did increase the team’s fan base, it did little to improve the football play on the field.
From 1988 through 1997, the Phoenix/Arizona Cardinals never finished the season above .500 and never made the playoffs. In fact only once did the Arizona Cardinals finish with a .500 record – in 1994 when the team finished in 3rd place in the NFC East. In 1998, however, the Arizona Cardinals finally rewarded their loyal and patient fan base with a 2nd place finish in the NFC East and a respectable 9-7 record. In that 1998 season, the Arizona Cardinals finished the season with a three game winning streak to secure its first ever Arizona playoff berth on the last weekend of the NFL regular season. The Phoenix Cardinals were nicknamed the “Cardiac Cards” that season because they won 7 of their 9 games by a margin of victory of 3 points or less. The Arizona Cardinals faced the Dallas Cowboys in Texas Stadium in the first round of the playoffs. The Arizona Cardinals had already lost to the Dallas Cowboys twice that season already and had not won an NFL football game in Dallas in 9 seasons. Despite the long odds, the Arizona Cardinals continued their winning ways by pulling off the 20-7 upset. That playoff win was the Cardinals franchise first playoff victory since its 1947 NFL Championship win over the Philadelphia Eagles. Although the Arizona Cardinals lost the next week 41-21 to the Minnesota Vikings and their high-powered offense, the Arizona Cardinals and their excited fan base viewed the 1998 season as a successful one. In 1999, the Arizona Cardinals returned to their losing ways. That year, the Arizona Cardinals finished with a 6-10 record, and they have not had a wining record since that 1998 playoff run - a span of 9 NFL seasons. From 2004 through 2006, legendary Head Coach Dennis Green ran the show for the Arizona Cardinals and the franchise had high hopes that the talented coach would be able to turn around the struggling franchise. However under Head Coach Green, the Arizona Cardinals never won more than 6 games and never qualified for post-season play. The Arizona Cardinals hired Ken Whisenhunt in 2007 and the team recorded 8 wins to finish with a "non-loising" record for the first time since 1998. Although the team failed to qualify for post-season play, Whisenhunt and the loyal Cardinals fans have high hopes for another successful campaign in 2008-9 and a trip back to the playoffs.
Hall of Famers
Although no Arizona Cardinals have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, thirteen men associated with the franchise have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Notable individuals who played for the Chicago Cardinals who were inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame include: Jimmy Conzelman; John "Paddy" Drsicoll; Walt Kiesling; Ernie Nevers; Guy Chamberlain; Ollie Matson; Charley Trippi and Dick "Night Train" Lane. Chicago Cardinals Team Owner Charles Bidwill was also inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Notable individuals who played for the St. Louis Cardinals who were inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame include: Larry Wilson; Roger Wehrli; Dan Dierdorf; and Jackie Smith.