Five of the best Arizona Cardinals games in the last 10 years
The Arizona Cardinals have had some memorable games over the years. Here is a look back at some of the best in recent years, starting with that magical run to the Super Bowl.
After what seemed the most unlikely of outcomes the week before with a win over the Carolina Panthers, the Cardinals hosted the Philadelphia Eagles, who had beaten the New York Giants, in the NFC Championship Game. After taking an early lead in the first half, the Cardinals surely gave some fans a heart attack when the Eagles took a 25-24 lead early in the fourth quarter.
The Cardinals answered with an eight-minute drive to take control at 32-25 with 2:53 to go. On the final play of the game, the Arizona defense held the Eagles to preserve the victory. With the win, the Cardinals earned their first-ever trip to the Super Bowl while becoming just the second team in NFL history to make it to the big game with a 9-7 record.
Hot on the heels of the memorable and momentous playoff run and victory over the Eagles in the NFC Championship Game, the Cardinals’ first Super Bowl appearance will be seared into the memories of fans forever. Playing the heavily favored Pittsburgh Steelers, the Cardinals had it rough in the first half.
The Cardinals were downtrodden but not dead in trailing 17-7 at the half after giving up a 100-yard interception return for a touchdown. Coming out swinging in the second half, the Cardinals marched toward a comeback scoring 16 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to take a 23-20 lead with just over two and a half minutes left in the game. It ended up being too much time for the Cardinals, however, as the Steelers scored a final game-winning touchdown with 35 seconds left.
In one of the more bizarre games they played, the Cardinals picked up a win over the Green Bay Packers in what some are calling the Coin-Toss Game. With the clock expiring, Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers completed a 41-yard Hail Mary to Jeff Janis to send the game into overtime.
Prior to overtime, the two teams headed to the middle of the field for the coin toss. The referee flipped the coin, but the coin never flipped but flopped instead, flat as a pancake, leaving the Cardinals with the advantage. After a 75-yard pass to Larry Fitzgerald on the first play of overtime, the Cardinals scored two plays later to win the game.
With a lot of hype leading into what would be the largely successful Bruce Arians coaching era, his first face-off against his old team was a memorable one. Entering the game as the underdog, the Cardinals decimated Indianapolis 40-11. Midway through the second quarter, the Cardinals were up 24-3. This statement win over the Colts not only got everyone’s attention, but it also placed the Cardinals as a definite team others would fear.
During the 2009 NFC Divisional Playoffs, the Cardinals entered the game with a 0-5 record in games played on the East Coast, while Carolina was 8-0 at home. The odds weren’t good for the Cardinals. However, the game took a turn for the best for the Cardinals as they handily outplayed the heavily favored Panthers in every way. Arizona stunned the crowd of 74,000 with the win while earning its first-ever trip the NFC title game. Who would have thought the little team that had lost four of its six previous regular-season games would have accomplished what it did?
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