December 5, 2021

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Cardinals start 5-0 on the road and try to get to…

2 min read
Cardinals start 5-0 on the road and try to get to...

The Cardinals, 5-0 on the road this year, have had as many road wins only twice since the league expanded to 16 games in 1978. In 2009, the Cardinals were 6-2 on the road during a 10-6 season (losing their lone road playoff game.) In 2015, the Cardinals were 7-1 on the road during a 13-3 season (losing their lone playoff road game.)

Perhaps they are at the forefront of road success – the Patriots are 4-0 on the road heading into Thursday night’s game in Atlanta – but there has been a lot of road success in general around the league.

Heading into Week 11 games, the road team has won exactly half – 75 of 150 – of 2021 games thus far.

Why? “Last year with Covid (and limited to no fans) it was understandable a little bit,” defensive coordinator Vance Joseph said. “This year I’m not sure.”

The Cards have dealt with the flip side of road success. They are 3-2 at home, but even in the three wins they have not looked like the team that plays away from State Farm Stadium. Joseph said with the 8-2 overall record, the two losses look similar – turnovers, falling behind, unimpressive run defense – and the coaching staff knows the blueprint to both victory and loss.

The better teams want to play at home in the playoffs, not the road.

“Home games have to be your advantage,” Joseph said. “Right not it’s not good for us.”

The road, however, has been. And that’s where the Cardinals will find themselves Sunday before a stretch run that includes three road game and three home games post-bye.

“The guys understand what we’re getting on the plane to go do, and we’ve been challenged,” Murray said. “We’ve heard all the talk all year before the season. Obviously, it’s here now, none of that matters. I think the guys have taken care of business and I think we’re playing with a chip on our shoulder.”