TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) -- Even the Arizona players got a kick out of
the sign in the stands that read "Thanks for the memories, both of
Maybe Saturday's game will rank as a third.
The Cardinals ended 18 years of mostly unremarkable football at
Sun Devil Stadium by beating the depleted Philadelphia Eagles
Karlos Dansby returned an interception 11 yards for a score and
Neil Rackers kicked field goals of 37 and 32 yards in Arizona's
final game at the stadium that has been its "temporary" home
since the franchise moved from St. Louis in 1988.
"I was really thinking about that a lot," McCown said. "I
don't know how much other guys thought of it because we're such a
young team. But being here four years, being here with Jake
(Plummer) and some of the guys that were around here a while, it
was special to me. I wanted to go out with a win."
The Cardinals (5-10) move to their $370 million new stadium in
the western suburb of Glendale next fall.
The Eagles (6-9) were beaten for the seventh time in nine games
to assure their first losing season since going 5-11 in 1999, Andy
Reid's first year as coach. Long since decimated by injuries,
Philadelphia lost another big name, at least for the day, when
defensive end Jevon Kearse went out with a sprained right knee in
the first quarter.
"Congratulations to the Cardinals. They outplayed us today,"
Reid said. "That's my responsibility. I take the blame for that. I
did not have this group ready to go."
Regardless of the injuries, Eagles linebacker Jeremiah Trotter
saw no excuse for losing to Arizona.
"We believe we're a better football team and we didn't show it,
not even close," he said. "Obviously everybody knows we went
through a lot this year with injuries and off-the-field situations,
but there are certain games you're supposed to win and have got to
win. This was one."
Mike McMahon threw for a touchdown and had a pair of 1-yard
scoring runs for Philadelphia. A 30-yard pass interference penalty
against Adrian Wilson set up McMahon's sneak from inches out that
cut the lead to 27-21 with 26 seconds to play. But Arizona's Eric
Green caught the onside kick to preserve the victory.
McCown, starting in place of injured Kurt Warner in what almost
certainly was his final home game with Arizona, completed 27 of 38
passes for 294 yards and was intercepted once. In the second half,
he was 16-for-19 for 171 yards and two touchdowns.
"That was one of the funnest games I've been a part of,"
McCown, an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, is
10-11 as a starter for the Cardinals, 8-8 the last two years under
coach Dennis Green.
"I think he was very good," Green said of McCown's
performance. "He was very efficient. He only made one bad throw.
He does a good job of getting the ball up."
Fitzgerald caught five passes for 93 yards and Boldin nine for
81, putting both over 1,300 yards for the season. They are the
sixth duo in NFL history to pass 1,300 in the same year.
Arizona had its longest drive of the season, 97 yards in 13
plays, for its final score, capped by McCown's' 20-yard TD pass to
Boldin to make it 27-7.
McMahon, under severe pressure from the blitzing Arizona defense
all afternoon, completed 12-of-33 for 151 yards. He was sacked four
times, two apiece by Wilson and Chike Okeafor.
On first down from the Philadelphia 20 in the second quarter,
McMahon's pass was picked off by onrushing linebacker Dansby, who
ran 11 yards to make it 13-0.
An Eagles drive stalled at the Arizona 32, but Koy Detmer threw
12 yards to Chad Lewis on a fake field goal and McMahon threw 19
yards to Darnerien McCants. McMahon scrambled in from the 1 to cut
the lead to 13-7.
Aided by a pass interference penalty against Michael Lewis,
Arizona drove 76 yards in seven plays, culminated by McCown's
25-yard scoring pass to a wide-open Fitzgerald to make it 20-7.
The Rutgers football team, in town to play in the Insight
Bowl, attended the game. McMahon is a Rutgers alum. ... McCown's
47-yard TD pass to Bryant Johnson was called back by al illegal
shift. ... Arizona was 61-82 at Sun Devil Stadium. ... Cardinals
tackle Leonard Davis left with a bruised knee in the first half.