PHOENIX - Believe it or not, it's been 25 years since the Arizona Cardinals moved to Phoenix, so Sunday's game against the Seahawks is a celebration of sorts of a quarter of a century of NFL football here in the Valley of the Sun.
The Cardinals are opening the season against the same team they closed out the 2011 season with, the Seattle Seahawks. The Cards actually set an NFL record in last year's finale with its fourth overtime win of the year, a 23-20 thriller at University of Phoenix Stadium.
It's also an interesting start to the season for Arizona, given the fact that Sundays home game is just the fourth week one home start in the last 25 years for the team, with all four coming in the last six years at the University of Phoenix Stadium.
Sunday's game is also the Cardinals 66th consecutive sellout at the stadium.
In contrast, the Seattle Seahawks open their 37th season in the NFL after being named an expansion team back in the 70's. It will also be the ninth time since 2000 that the Seahawks have opened the season on the road, something Seahawks fans would like to see changed.
But what about the game itself? The Cardinals have named John Skelton as the starting quarterback, while the Seahawks are going with rookie Russell Wilson out of Wisconsin.
With both teams boasting solid defenses, you could expect Sundays game to be low scoring, but as we all know, anything can happen in the NFL, especially between two NFC West rivals like these two teams.
The Seahawks have ten returning starters and ranked third in the league in points scored during this pre-season.
Expect to see a combination of Beanie Wells and Ryan Williams in the backfield for Arizona, while there's still speculation on the status of Seattle starting running back Marshawn Lynch. Lynch has been struggling with back spasms all week and is still listed as a "game time" decision.
For what it's worth, Seattle finished the pre-season with a perfect 4-0 record, while the Cardinals wrapped up a five game pre-season with just one win.
Our pick: Seattle 24, Cardinals 21
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