Cardinals notebook: Team aims for 1st NFC West sweep - East Valley Tribune: Sports

Cardinals notebook: Team aims for 1st NFC West sweep

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Posted: Friday, December 26, 2008 6:53 pm | Updated: 9:34 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

The Cardinals have a shot at another first. If they win Sunday, at home vs. Seattle, they'll have swept the NFC West, 6-0. That would be the first such sweep in franchise history.

Read Mike Tulumello's blog, 'Bird Watching'

"Obviously it would mean a lot," coach Ken Whisenhunt said, noting the Pittsburgh Steelers recently pointed with pride to their chance to sweep their division.

"Anytime you can do that, it's a significant accomplishment."


Receiver Anquan Boldin is listed as questionable while linebacker Travis LaBoy is doubtful for Sunday.

Whisenhunt indicated he'd like to have both play, even if only in limited action, so they aren't cold going into the Cardinals' playoff game next weekend.

They will work out before the game, then Whisenhunt will make a decision.

"We'd like for them to play just to get a little bit of a feel going into next week.

"But once again, you want to make sure we're not going to set them back. We could be working on a short week if the (playoff) game is on Saturday."

Boldin has a sore shoulder, LaBoy a sore ankle. Backup safety Matt Ware (calf) is listed as doubtful.

For the Seahawks, defensive end Brandon Miller (wrist) is out; linebackers D.D. Lewis (shin) and Leroy Hill (neck) are doubtful.


The Cardinals remain last in the NFL in rushing with 71 yards per game.

Does this stick in the craw of Whisenhunt, a running-oriented coach with past teams?

"I'm not crazy about it. Being 32nd in the league is something that ... I'm embarrassed about because I feel we're a better team than that."

"But when you look at other things that offset it, where we are scoring, where we are in touchdowns, where we are moving the football, where we are in the league offensively. All those things you can't ignore, either.

"As disappointed as I am that we're not running the football, you have to understand you're having success.

"I guess that's kind of the way I'm kind of living with it now. We're trying to play to our strengths because we're having success doing that."

The Cardinals rank No.5 in total offense because of their second-ranked passing game.


Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren has a list of factors he thinks is important for a team as it heads into the postseason.

One of them is something the Cardinals lack: momentum.

"If you're fortunate enough to have a home-field advantage, that's a big edge. If you're healthy, that's the second thing.

"Now momentum, if you're playing hot, and your quarterback is hot - that's the other thing - those are good things to have going down the stretch. ...

"You look at the Giants last year and the times we have caught fire on teams I have coached (Packers and Seahawks), that's a real thing ... Those things determine who is the Super Bowl winner in my opinion."


The transition from Holmgren to incoming coach Jim Mora will start for the Seahawks after Sunday's game.

"I think Jim Mora is going to be a great coach," Seahawks safety Marcus Trufant said.

"He has that personality. He is energetic."

Trufant said Mora seems like Tampa Bay's Jon Gruden in that "We kind of feed off his energy and we go out there and we have fun. He loves to have fun on the field."


Like so many people these days, Trufant's little brother, Isaiah, is out of a job.

Isaiah Trufant is one of the top defensive players for the Rattlers, who are dormant for the upcoming season because the Arena Football League suspended the season.

"He is hanging out with the family," said Marcus, whose family grew up in the Seattle-Tacoma area.

"He is kicking back. He was pretty much staying in shape for the season and trying to get back but it just didn't work out that way.

"So he is pretty bummed about that and trying to figure out what he is going to do."


The game is sold out. The Cardinals have sold out every game for three seasons in Glendale.

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