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Cards Open on a Monday Night
Wed. Apr 23, 2014 -- Cardinal schedule was made public a few moments ago. A few highlights:

  • We open up hosting the Chargers on the later of 2 Mon. night games

  • Game 2 is the Giants' home opener in NJ.

  • We get bitten by an early BYE WEEK (Week #4)

  • We play at StL on a Thursday night and host the Seahawks for our final game on a Sunday night.

  • The odds favor our not having any snow days (I'm not up on which stadiums are or are not domed, but - from Nov 2 forward, our 4 road games are vs. Dallas, Seattle, Atlanta and St Louis).

  • We have a 6-day work-week between Weeks 1 & 2, 14 days to prep for Denver between Weeks 3 & 5, a 4-day work-week to prep for StL between Week 14 and 15 and 10 days between Week 15 and 16 to prepare for the Seahawks.

  • Other than road games at Seattle and Atlanta on Weeks 11 & 12, there are no consecutive road games (or, therefore, any 2-week trips to the East, Midwest or South).

  • The schedule is back-end loaded with tough division games - our last 3 games are with StL, Seattle and the Niners, and 5 of our last 8 games are with division rivals.

  • The good news is that of 4 of our first 6 games appear fairly winnable (the other two - vs. the Niners and Broncos - being somewhat more challenging - at least on paper).

Here's the schedule in detail (all times Eastern)

  • Week 01 Mon. Sept. 08 - 10:20 pm - San Diego (ESPN)

  • Week 02 Sun. Sept. 14 - 1:00 pm - @ Giants (FOX)

  • Week 03 Sun. Sept. 21 - 4:05 pm - Niners (FOX)

  • Week 04 BYE WEEK

  • Week 05 Sun. Oct. 05 - 4:05 pm - @ Denver (FOX)

  • Week 06 Sun. Oct. 12 - 4:25 pm - Washington (FOX)

  • Week 07 Sun. Oct. 19 - 4:25 pm - @ Oakland (FOX)

  • Week 08 Sun. Oct. 26 - 4:05 pm - Eagles (FOX)

  • Week 09 Sun. Nov. 02 - 1:00pm - @ Dallas (FOX)

  • Week 10 Sun. Nov. 09 - 4:25 pm - Rams (FOX)

  • Week 11 Sun. Nov. 16 - 4:25 pm - Detroit (FOX)

  • Week 12 Sun. Nov. 23 - 4:05 pm - @ Seattle (FOX)

  • Week 13 Sun. Nov. 30 - 4:05 pm - @ Atlanta (FOX)

  • Week 14 Sun. Dec. 07 - 4:05 pm - Kansas City (CBS)

  • Week 15 Thu. Dec. 11 - 8:25 pm - @ Rams (NFLN)

  • Week 16 Sun. Dec. 21 - 8:30 pm - Seattle (NBC)

  • Week 17 Sun. Dec. 28 - 4:25 pm @ Niners (FOX)

Everything considered (other than the early Bye week), I like our schedule. It seems fair - we start off at home with 2 of our first 3 games in Glendale. No lengthy road trips, snow games are highly unlikely, we're on national TV 3 time and we aren't overburdened by more than one or two short work-weeks. Good going, Mr. Goodell & Co.!

Reg. Season Schedule Published Tonight
Wed. Apr 23, 2014 -- One of the funnest aspects of draft season is that, a few weeks before Draft Day, the NFL sneaks in the release of the upcoming regular season schedule.
By now, everyone's draft boards have been revised, tweaked and tweaked some more. We're all on our umpteenth version of our mock draft. Waiting for Draft Day to finally get here is like "watching grass grow", so the release of the schedule gives us something to talk about during the final few weeks.

The most common thing fans do is to dissect their team's schedule to protect wins and loss. I never do this - for two reasons - (1) if the outcome of contests on the schedule were all that predictable, why play the games? (2) To casually rate one game as a "gimme" or another as a "can't win" is asking for a huge dose of wrath to come down on our heads from the football gods. Solution: "Don't bother to predict the outcome of each game on the sked.

But that doesn't mean there's not plenty of other things you can do analyzing a schedule. Here are some of the things I look for:

  • When's Bye Week? (the closer to the middle of the season, the better)

  • Are there any potential snow or bad weather days? (You hope any away games with cold-weather teams are scheduled before early November)

  • When (if ever) are we on national tv?

  • Which team each week gains an edge from extra days created by a Bye Week or a Sunday, Monday or Thursday night game?

  • (More esoteric) Do we catch teams with new coaching staffs, turned-over rosters or new offensive/defensive systems early in the season?

  • Are the final few games in the season gritty division games? Or might they be against lesser opponents or possibly teams that have already cinched playoff berths and may take their feet off the pedal?

Those are the things I'll be looking for when I dissect the Cardinal schedule. Bon Appetit!

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