Originally posted on Bloguin Best  |  Last updated 9/24/12

After defeating his old team, Kevin Kolb helped the Arizona Cardinals advance to 3-0 on the season—something that hasn’t happened since 1974, before the team was even in Arizona. With thousands of fans celebrating after the game, Glendale was buzzing; the energy was contagious.

Despite all of this, during the postgame conference, head coach Ken Whisenhunt said, “We're not a good team yet.”

Yes, that is quoted correctly. The Arizona Cardinals, undefeated and quickly becoming one of the most praised teams in the league, are not a good team according to their own head coach.

Whisenhunt went on to specify that he will only consider the Cardinals a good team if they continue to play the way they have been playing. Does the Cards’ own head coach think they’re getting lucky? Absolutely not.

Ray Horton made similar hype-killing statements when asked how he shut down Tom Brady and the Patriots in Week 2. The Cardinals coaches are playing down the hype, much like Jim Harbaugh did last season with his defense-led team, the 49ers.

Many similarities can be made between last season’s 49ers and this season’s Cardinals. Both teams are based around a tough, gritty philosophy of the olden days: Defeat the man in front of you as brutally as possible and take pride in doing so, whether you’re on offense or defense.

This philosophy is very evident when watching either teams' defense play, but the most interesting parallel that can be drawn is between the two teams' quarterbacks.

Kevin Kolb and Alex Smith are very much the same player.

Smith, a No. 1 draft pick for the 49ers, was considered a horrible underachiever, but the team stuck with him, continued to pay him well and gave him support through his rough early career. Kolb, traded to the Cardinals for draft picks and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and given a very sizable contract, also underachieved in a very major way in his first season as a Cardinal.

After pursuing Peyton Manning and failing, the Cards paid Kolb even more money. He then failed to start Week 1, only getting into the game when John Skelton was injured. Kolb has been a solid producer since then, limiting turnovers but not doing anything too impressive.

That is exactly how Alex Smith played last season. He was an average quarterback that piggybacked off of good defense and special-teams play to help his team to victory.

With killer defense and special teams, the 49ers were able to win, just like this year’s Cards.

This style of play fit Alex Smith and the 49ers well last year, as they went to the NFC Championship Game and lost by a field goal to the Super Bowl-winning New York Giants.

Last year’s 49ers began the season very underrated and largely unknown then proceeded to shock teams and take the league by storm with their vicious style of football.

Clearly, a direct parallel can be made between them and the 2012 Cardinals, and now that the Cardinals are on the radar, expect them to be a serious playoff contender.

Currently, the Cardinals are atop the NFC West, after the 49ers lost to the Minnesota Vikings, but the Cardinals and 49ers will get to battle it out for the top spot in the conference twice this season.

The rest of the season is unwritten, but it's not unrealistic to think that the Cardinals’ season could parallel the 49ers' near-victorious campaign of 2011 and last deep into the playoffs.


Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Lions extend CB Darius Slay with $50 million deal

Adam Jones: Bengals dominated Steelers in playoff game

Robert Griffin III on QB battle: Only one of us runs 4.3

Gordon defends friendship with 'good friend' Manziel

Geno Smith ‘kind of pissed off’ about Ryan Fitzpatrick’s return


Bell admits he knew about missed drug test, lied to media

Report: Chargers rookie Joey Bosa to hold out of camp

Doc Rivers blames ‘bloggers’ for Blake Griffin trade rumors

Jason Peters: Eagles practiced too much under Chip Kelly

Report: Giants’ Victor Cruz cleared to practice

PETA sends Warren Sapp vegan lobster following shark bite

Crowell still making amends for controversial Instagram post

Report: LeBron urged Justin Bieber not to perform at RNC

Luck refutes Matt Hasselbeck’s assertion he never showers

Newspaper editor explains use of Jordan meme for MJ article

Five NFL teams set to underachieve in 2016

WATCH: Belichick gets annoyed by Jimmy Garoppolo question

Ronda Rousey denies being pregnant despite rumor

Eight most overpaid offensive players in NFL

Giants acquire All-Star Eduardo Nunez from the Twins

Vikings QB injured trying to kick open door

Josh Gordon thankful for support from Browns

Report: Seahawks DE Chris Clemons retiring

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker