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Countdown to Super Bowl XLIII

The Cardinals make their first-ever Super Bowl appearance and become the first #4 seed from the NFC to advance to the Super Bowl after defeating the Eagles 32-25 in the NFC Championship Game at University of Phoenix Stadium.

Arizona qualified for the postseason by clinching its first division title since 1975 and the team’s first-ever NFC West crown. In the Wild Card Round the Cardinals defeated the Falcons 30-24 at home before hitting the road for the Divisional Playoff Round. They traveled to Carolina to face the Panthers, who entered the game with a perfect 8-0 record at home during the regular season, the only NFL team to accomplish that feat in 2008. The Cardinals defeated the Panthers 33-13 to move on to the conference title game.

Before an electric sell-out crowd, the Cards jumped out to a 24-6 halftime lead thanks to three Kurt Warner-to-Larry Fitzgerald TD passes against an Eagles defense that had not allowed one in 5 games. Philly then scored 19 unanswered points in the late 3rd and early 4th to take a 25-24 lead. The Cards, however, responded with a drive no one will soon forget. It was a 14-play, 72-yard masterpiece that chewed 7:52 off the clock and ended with Warner’s game-winning TD pass to RB Tim Hightower. The TD stamped the Cardinals ticket to the Super Bowl that was made possible by another stellar outing from Fitzgerald. The all-pro WR topped 100 yards for the 5th straight game and tied the NFL record with 3 straight in the postseason with a 9-catch, 152-yard, 3-TD performance.

Larry Fitzgerald put on another awe-inspiring performance, catching nine passes for 152 yards and three TDs, giving him an NFL postseason record 419 yards in his first three playoff games. Warner was equally as impressive in the game, completing 21-of-28 passes for 279 yards, four TDs and a QB rating of 145.7.

Arizona becomes the 8th different NFC team in the Super Bowl in as many years and Kurt Warner becomes just the second starting QB (Craig Morton) to lead two different franchises to the Super Bowl.


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