PHOENIX - When you start a season 2-0 for only the second time in 21 years, let's just say it's gratifying. When you deal the New England Patriots their first loss in a home opener in the history of Gillette Stadium (previously 10-0), it's downright rewarding.
And when you factor in statistics like holding Tom Brady and the Pats offense to just 33% on third down (5-15) and red zone TD's (1-3), well, it's downright euphoria - right?
Sort of. Was I outside the Cards locker room when I heard a super-sized exclamation from inside its walls? Yes. Did the celebration die down soon there after and turn into business as usual by the time I boarded Red Bird One with the Cardinals? Pretty much.
"To be honest, we're not celebrating like we won the Super Bowl," said Kevin Kolb. "We're proud of ourselves and we're going to enjoy it. But also, we're going to move forward and Philly is next on the list."
Hang on. Let's savor this signature win a lil' bit, like a kid trying to make his dessert last before bedtime.
"I think the one thing people don't realize is maybe how physical we are," Kolb said when I asked him about the opening drive setting a tone for the game.
"That first drive being 13 plays ad being physical with the ball and the defense doing the same thing. I'm sure it caught them off guard a little bit."
No question that the Cards final touchdown caught the Patriots by surprise. Unknown to anyone else on the Cards offensive unit, Kolb and center Lyle Sendlein ran a QB sneak el grande that covered five yards to the end zone.
Call it game planning or gamesmanship, it worked. And when Bill Belichick sees the film of his interior defensive front being exploited, well, he'll want to hide under the hood on his sweatshirt.
"The biggest thing we've been stressing - stay patient, stay patient. Don't get greedy and let's get it to the 4th quarter," Kolb replied when I asked him about the Cards approach. "And that's exactly what happened. That's good coaching on our part. Mike Miller did a great job with the game plan this week."
On defense, it's real simple. At least, according to the team leaders that I spoke with in Foxborough. Fast and physical. It sounds like one of those Vin Diesel movies with lots of high-speed stunt-driving, but it's actually how the Cards describe what they call their competitive advantage.
A defense that is both fast and physical. Typically, a team will possess one trait or the other. But the Cards D likes to fashion itself as a unit that can match up with the speedsters and grapple with the maulers.
And, right now, who's to argue? Certainly not the Seahawks or Patriots.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
More Arizona Sports
Twin sisters, Larae and Janelle Hunt are using their "twin" powers to their advantage, helping Valley Christian High School to one of the teams best seasons in years.