It will be the elephant in the room -- or the stadium, to be exact -- when the Arizona Cardinals take the field Thursday against the Seattle Seahawks at University of Phoenix. The last time the two teams faced each other, the Seahawks forced eight turnovers and sent the Cardinals home with their tails between their legs, handing them the worst loss in franchise history.
Not only was the 58-0 loss on Dec. 9, 2012, embarrassing in itself, but it became the lowest point of a once-promising campaign; it was the punctuation mark of the team's nine-game losing streak -- one that followed four straight wins to open the season. Surprisingly, Arizona came back and ended its losing streak the following week against Detroit, but the season was long lost by that point.
"Obviously we weren't ready last time," Cardinals center Lyle Sendlein said Monday. "And that was kind of the beginning to the end for us last year. We're going to go out there with the attitude to change things of how it happened last year.
"We're a different team. Most of the guys weren't even here last year for that."
Sendlein tried to brush the game off as irrelevant to the current Cardinals squad, but another answer he gives reveals that there may be some ripple effects still in play.
"Like I said, most of the guys that were on that team last year aren't here right now," he said. "And those who are, you know, that's something you don't forget when you go out there and experience that on the road -- a kind of low point of the season."
Head coach Bruce Arians, who wasn't with the team last year, said he hasn't heard any players talking about the loss to Seattle, but he offered his own take on the upcoming rematch.
"That was long, long ago. Don't really care about it," he said. "We're 3-3. They're 5-1. And that's all it's about."
With a shortened week of practice before the next game, Arians said his team will spend more time doing walk-thrus and recovering from Sunday's game in San Francisco, a 32-20 loss.
Seattle sits atop the NFC West at 5-1, and is the favorite in Thursday's game in Glendale.