GLENDALE, Ariz. ‚?? Kevin Kolb tried to downplay the significance of beating his former team, focusing more on the success of his current team.
In the huddle, the Cardinals quarterback couldn‚??t hide his desire to knock off Philadelphia. He wanted this one bad.
Kolb orchestrated Arizona‚??s offense to near perfection while building a big first-half lead and the defense hounded Michael Vick all day, sacking him five times to help the Cardinals run over the Eagles 27-6 on Sunday for their best start in 38 years.
‚??He was calling for guys to reach down and dig deep, that we really needed to make a play,‚?Ě Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald said. ‚??He really doesn‚??t talk that much in the huddle, but today I could tell that he was extra motivated.‚?Ě
Kolb was sharp in his first start against his former team, throwing for 222 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 17-of-24 passing. He led the Cardinals to a 24-0 halftime lead, in part, by reconnecting with Larry Fitzgerald, who had one catch against New England last week.
The guest conductor for the Phoenix Symphony on Thursday, Fitzgerald kept the high notes going by catching nine passes for 114 yards and a touchdown while becoming the youngest player in NFL history to reach 700 receptions.
Adding to Kolb‚??s satisfaction was the way Arizona‚??s defense played against the man who pushed him out of Philly.
Harassing Vick from the opening snap, the Cardinals hit him hard and often, forcing him into two fumbles, including one that James Sanders returned 93 yards for a touchdown on the final play of the first half.
Backing up a big road win against the Patriots with a dominating victory over the Eagles, the Cardinals (3-0) are off to their best start since 1974, more than a dozen years before the team moved to the desert. They‚??ve also won seven straight home games, the second-longest streak in franchise history, and have won 10 of 12 dating to the end of last season.
‚??I‚??m going to enjoy it, don‚??t get me wrong, but the biggest thing is being 3-0,‚?Ě Kolb said. ‚??Being 3-0 with the teams that we‚??ve played and the fashion that we‚??ve won, it‚??s been exciting.‚?Ě
The Eagles‚?? season had been, too ‚?? until they ran into Kolb and his Cardinals.
Philadelphia (2-1) became the first NFL team to open a season with two one-point wins. The Eagles didn‚??t give themselves a chance to rally for another victory.
The NFL‚??s best offense the first two games, the Eagles had three turnovers, running their season total to 12, and labored all day against the scrappy Cardinals, unable to keep them off Vick.
‚??They played better than we did, clearly better,‚?Ě Eagles coach Andy Reid said. ‚??They coached better, they played better and that is my responsibility. I didn‚??t have my football team ready to play and they did.‚?Ě