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Monday, January 4, 2010
Around the NFC West: Cardinals 10-6

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic questions Ken Whisenhunt's plan for the Cardinals after key players got hurt and the Packers won easily. Bickley: "Luckily, Larry Fitzgerald escaped unhurt, even though he still was playing for statistics late in the fourth quarter. That is inexcusable." Agreed. Fitzgerald was playing late in the game even when Arizona had only one wide receiver on the field. Whisenhunt would be getting skewered this week if Fitzgerald had suffered a serious injury during the final minutes of a meaningless game when other receivers were available for duty.

Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic says cornerback Michael Adams struggled in coverage after the Cardinals lost Pro Bowl corner Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie just 97 seconds into the game. McManaman: "In the first quarter of Arizona's 33-7 loss, Adams was called for three penalties and got beat by Jordy Nelson on a 51-yard pass play that set up Green Bay's second touchdown. He helped set up the Packers' first touchdown by being flagged with a 28-yard pass-interference penalty. He also was called offside on each of Green Bay's first two point-after attempts. When the Packers return to University of Phoenix Stadium for an NFC wild-card rematch this weekend, will Rodgers-Cromartie be able to play? If he can't or is limited -- he also is nursing a painful turf-toe injury -- will Adams be able to raise his level of play?"

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals' performance Sunday shouldn't affect how they play in the wild-card round, but there's still reason for concern against a Green Bay team that went from 4-4 to 11-5.

Also from McManaman and Somers: a Cardinals notebook led by an injury update.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says Anquan Boldin didn't seem particularly angry about his injury, a potential indication the receiver would be ready to play in the wild-card round.

Also from Urban: Rodgers-Cromartie initially feared he had suffered serious damage to his knee.

More from Urban: Nearly every Cardinals defensive starter came out of the game after one possession.