Modesty defines Cardinals’ goals for rest of season - East Valley Tribune: Sports

Modesty defines Cardinals’ goals for rest of season

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Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2006 3:16 am | Updated: 3:44 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

Since Dennis Green became coach of the Cardinals, Arizona has won two in a row just once — in 2004, when the Cards broke a long road losing streak in Miami and then knocked Kurt Warner out of the Giants’ starting quarterback job by beating New York.

The Cards will get a chance to match that modest win streak this week at home against Seattle, after rolling to a 34-20 victory Sunday in St. Louis.

And that, frankly, is one of the few things the Cards have left to play for.

The playoffs are long gone for the 3-9 Cardinals, and so too are any lofty goals.

“You just want to play well,” Green said Monday after his team posted an impressive 34-20 win over the reeling Rams. “The name of the game is you want to feel like, when you go on the field to play, that you’re playing with a good team. A coach wants to feel like he’s coaching a good team, a player wants to feel he’s got a good coach coaching him.

“There’s going to be disappointment all over the league because only a certain number of players and teams get to make the playoffs. You want to play like you’re a good team.”

Green acknowledged that it has been a bad time to play so poorly, given that it has been such a weak year for the NFC.

It wouldn’t have taken much more for the Cards to be in the playoff chase, which makes their disappearance from the race, basically by midseason, even more crushing.

Their recent success must also be tempered; beating a bad Detroit team and the struggling Rams doesn’t mean all the Cards’ ills are cured.

But, quarterback Matt Leinart said, “We are getting better every week. It is obvious. The energy is there, everyone was into the game (Sunday).”

That may be the best thing the Cards have going right now. Green remains a probable coaching casualty by the end of the season; it would be easy for the Cards to completely pack it in, especially on the road.

The tests will be stiffer, with games upcoming against possible playoff teams Seattle and Denver.

But the Seahawks would also be a nice opponent to topple and notch that elusive winning streak after such a dreary season.

“That’s what this game is about, adversity and dealing with it, trying to fight through that,” defensive end Chike Okeafor said. “That’s what makes this game fun, that’s what got me coming back.

“If it was easy I wouldn’t be coming back.”

EXTRA POINTS: The Cardinals bolstered their defensive line Monday with a surprise signing, bringing back defensive tackle Kenny King for the balance of the season.

King was cut by the Cardinals in training camp after he was forced to undergo hand surgery. King has missed the previous two seasons also because of hand and wrist problems.

The Cards also brought cornerback Darrell Hunter up from the practice squad and cut fullback John Bronson and receiver Carlyle Holiday…

Green said defensive tackle Kendrick Clancy (ankle) will miss another game this week.…

Edgerrin James needs 190 yards to become the Cards’ first 1,000-yard runner since Adrian Murrell had 1,042 in 1998. James needs 261 yards rushing in the final four games to have the most rushing yards by a Card since moving to Arizona. Garrison Hearst ran for 1,070 yards in 1995.

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