Sunday Snapshot

The Cardinals and New Orleans Saints collide in the Bayou with both teams' playoff hopes at stake. The Saints plan to play in attack mode, while the Cardinals will try to counter with a game of keep-away.

KICKOFF: Sunday, 1:00 ET
GAMEDATE: 12/16/07
SURFACE: Sportexe Momentum
TV: FOX, Ron Pitts, Tony Boselli

SERIES: 25th meeting. Cardinals lead series, 13-11. The Saints are just one of four organizations the Cardinals have a winning record against. The teams last met in 2004, with the Cardinals winning 34-10 in Arizona. The teams have met just once since 2000 and have split their last six meetings.

PREDICTION: Saints 31-28


The Cardinals' secondary is going to be under intense fire all day, so the offense has to establish the running game. That means QB Kurt Warner avoiding turnovers and preventing Arizona from falling into another early hole. How aggressive Warner can be downfield could depend on the health of WRs Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin.

Saints QB Drew Brees has at least two TD passes in four straight home games, and will look to attack the Cardinals' injury-ravage defense from the get-go. Coach Sean Payton is using the pass to set up the run, so Arizona has to be wary of draws and delayed handoffs to RB Aaron Stecker.


Cardinals: Fitzgerald (groin) is getting closer to 100 percent while Boldin (dislocated toe) will be a game-time decision; TE Leonard Pope (ankle/leg) is out for the season, replaced by rookie Ben Patrick.

Saints: RB Reggie Bush (knee) is out; TE Eric Johnson (groin) is uncertain.

FAST FACTS: The Cardinals' final three opponents have a combined 12 wins and .307 winning percentage. ... The Saints are 2-4 at home this season and are 3-8 in their past 11 regular-season home games.


--TE Leonard Pope underwent surgery this week to repair the dislocated ankle and fractured leg suffered last week in Seattle. Pope was placed on injured reserve earlier this week.

--TE Ben Patrick should receive more playing time now that Leonard Pope is out for the year with a dislocated ankle.

--S Aaron Francisco should be able to play this week after missing six of the past seven weeks with a sprained knee and torn calf injuries. Francisco participated in all of Thursday's practice.

--WR Anquan Boldin should be able to play this week after missing last week's game in Seattle because of a dislocated toe.

--LB Karlos Dansby should be able to play despite suffering bruised ribs last week in Seattle.

--WR Larry Fitzgerald is expected to play Sunday with a sore groin, but he won't be 100 percent. Fitzgerald has difficulty pushing off with his left foot, and is taking it easy in practice this week.


--RB Reggie Bush did not practice Thursday because of a torn posterior cruciate ligament in his left knee and will miss his second straight game Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.

--TE Eric Johnson missed Thursday's practice with a groin injury and was listed as day-to-day by coach Sean Payton.

--TE Billy Miller will likely start against the Cardinals if Johnson can't go Sunday.

--DT Brian Young was sidelined for the second straight day Thursday because of a chest cold.

-SLB Scott Fujita was excused from practice after his wife gave birth to twin daughters Thursday morning.

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