Calais Campbell thinks that the best team in the NFC is one that's currently a long shot to make the playoffs.
Campbell is a bit biased, however.
Campbell, the Arizona Cardinals defensive end, thinks his team is the best in the NFC. Their best argument is that last week they went into Seattle, currently the No. 1 seed in the NFC, and became the first team to win there in two seasons.
It's not a bad case, one that Campbell brought to the NFL Network.
"I mean, in my opinion, we're the best team in the NFC," Campbell said on "NFL AM," according to NFL.com. "But I hope we get into the playoffs so we can show it, because going 11-5 – but you don't make it to the playoffs – nobody really knows. The only teams we talk about are the playoff teams. So we really hope we get a chance to get in. I know if we do, we will do some damage."
That's the problem. The 10-5 Cardinals need to beat the 49ers, who won't be too happy to hear that Arizona thinks it's the best NFC team or that Campbell believes the Cardinals are going 11-5. Even that might not be enough to make the playoffs. The Cardinals would also need New Orleans to lose at home to Tampa Bay to make the playoffs (there are scenarios with ties as well, but we're skipping those for now).
The Cardinals are just in the wrong conference this year. They'd have long since clinched a berth in the AFC, which has three 8-7 teams and a 7-8 team battling for the final spot going into the final weekend. Even if the Cardinals don't make the playoffs, it doesn't take away from the job coach Bruce Arians and his staff have done this year. Arizona's defense has been great, leading to a surprising season that includes victories over the Seahawks and Panthers – currently the top two seeds in the NFC. Campbell told NFL Network that this team is better than the Cardinals' NFC championship team from the 2008 season.
Even if Campbell is not completely correct about his "NFC's best" claim, given how the Cardinals have won 10 games and beaten the NFC's top two teams, maybe the rest of the conference should hope that Arizona doesn't find its way into the playoffs.
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