Take a look at what the Arizona Cardinals (5-8-1) are saying about the Seattle Seahawks (9-4-1) before the two teams meet in Week 16 at CenturyLink Field.
Head Coach Bruce Arians
(On how they have managed to win in Seattle...) "A lot of luck. Basically having Carson [Palmer] healthy helps, but we just have to be patient, run the football, and we've made a few big plays that's helped us along the way."
(On the Seahawks defense without Earl Thomas...) "Well it's hard to take the heartbeat out of there. He and Kam [Chancellor] I've always felt like were the heartbeat of that defense. Young players back there look good, but it's not Earl. I don't see any difference and they do the scheme the same. They just had to plug in a young player just like everyone else when a guy gets hurt. It's hard to replace All-Pro players."
(On Seahawks linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright...) "They've always been great and they have that speed factor and length factor. I think the guys up front keep them extremely clean and they make plays. I think Bobby is one of the best linebackers, if not the best middle linebacker in the game."
Quarterback Carson Palmer
(On the Seahawks defense looking different without Earl Thomas...)"Yeah it's a little bit different, but when you got Michael Bennett, K.J. [Wright] and you can go on and on. It's so many good players on that defense. On the front Cliff Avril is having one of the best years I've ever seen him have. Bobby [Wagner], looking at numbers, he's got like 160 something tackles, I don't know the exact number but it's just a ton of tackles. There's so many good players on that defense and it's so well built. There's purpose behind everything they do, and it's obvious in the way they play and the outcome of their games."
(On what's allowed them to win games in CenturyLink Field in recent seasons...)"Well the ball's bounced our way a couple times. They've been close games every time. It's my favorite place to play, it's obviously by far the most difficult place to play. But there's so much energy and such a great energy in that stadium. The fanbase is just spectacular and it's a beautiful stadium. I think it's so cool sitting down there on the water downtown. There's just so much electricity in that stadium and we enjoy that. No doubt it's difficult. There's going to be some offsides and there's going to be some penalties and there's going to be some bad plays because that's what that kind of environment creates. We really look forward to playing there and we're excited to do it this Saturday."
Safety Tony Jefferson
(On this week's game against Seattle…) "We've still got a lot to play for. I know we're not in the playoffs, but we can still try to be the No. 1 defense in the League and stuff like that."
(On if getting a win in Seattle would be a good early Christmas gift…) "Yeah, great Christmas gift on Christmas Eve getting a win in Seattle. I personally love playing there. They said there's a possibility it'll snow on Saturday, so hopefully it does snow, it'll be my first snow game. Just have some fun and be physical and get a W."
Defensive Tackle Calais Campbell
(On moving on to this week's game against Seattle…)"They're our rival. They're the team that we look forward to playing the most. Watching the tape from when we played them the first time, we want to try to go out there — from a defensive standpoint — and just do that again. … We know they're going to try to get some momentum going into the playoffs. I expect a heavyweight bout. It should be a fight. When I look in the guys' eyes I feel like we should be ready."
(On the possibility of playing in snow on Saturday at CenturyLink Field…) "It's been a while since I played in some snow. You've got to go play football in any weather. … The biggest thing about it is you play real hard, stay warm on the sideline, you should be fine."
Offensive Coordinator Harold Goodwin
(On this week's game against the Seahawks…)"Big game, division opponent. Obviously the last time at home we didn't finish the job against these guys and we've been struggling a little bit as a team, but there's no better way to feel better about ourselves than going to Seattle and win, so that's what we're going to try to do."
(On the Seahawks' defensive line compared to last week's game against New Orleans…)"This is a very different animal. It's not necessarily an animal, it's an alien. We've got plenty of tape versus these guys from the last time last season when we played well enough to beat them, and have beat them, so we've just got to go in with the mindset that we've got to pound these guys and we've got to be efficient in the passing game."
Defensive Coordinator James Bettcher
(On if the Seahawks' struggles in the run game this season changes the way they approach this week…)"I think some of that's been the injury issues they've had. You look at Russell [Wilson], the number of times he's scrambled the last six games versus the previous six or seven before we played them the first time, it's almost doubled, almost tripled. So you know he's healthy, he's a guy who's maybe going to keep the ball a little bit more on the option, scramble with the ball. I think they're starting, over the last couple of weeks, trying to get back to the things they've done with him carrying the ball."
Get to know the faces of the Arizona Cardinals' offensive and defensive units heading into the team's Week 16 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field.
Wide Receiver Larry Fitzgerald
(On finishing the year against the Seahawks and Rams…)"Coach Arians is stressing the importance of finishing the season strong. Being a veteran captain I understand that myself and Patrick [Peterson] and Carson and the guys that wear captains on their jerseys got to go out there and perform at a high level against two teams that are in our division. We've got to set the tempo for moving forward."
(On this week's game against Seattle…)"We've got nothing to lose. Why not go up there and just lay it on the line and make it miserable for them on Christmas? Honestly, we've got nothing to lose."
(On playing at CenturyLink Field…) "Seattle's hands down my favorite place to play. Any place I've played in the National Football League, it's just my favorite. The energy in that building, how good they are defensively, it's just a great place to go play. If you play well there you can play well anywhere. You can't hear Carson in the huddle on third downs, their personnel is unbelievable, so it's just a great atmosphere. As a competitive player, man, there's no better place to play."
(On games against the Seahawks…) "Playing against Seattle there's only two options: you're either going to be the hammer or you're going to be the nail. You've got to decide early what it's going to be. … I've got to deal with the best, most physical, strongest safety in the game in Kam Chancellor. He's a complete load. Mentally, going into the game, you've got to come with it, because you know if you don't he's going to embarrass you. From the time you step on that field you've got to understand what it's going to be. It's going to be a physical altercation for 60 minutes and if you don't have that kind of mentality it's going to be a long day. We saw that a couple years ago when we went up there and got beat like that. But we have a lot of pride in this locker room. We understand the kind of opponent we're playing against, not only this week but next week as well. We've got two top-5 defenses we're going against the last two weeks, so if we're really the offense we're capable of being this is a great opportunity for us."
- For more, head to AZCardinals.com