San Francisco 49ers: Two Keys to Defeating the Cardinals

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December 30, 2012; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith (11) prepares to take the snap against the Arizona Cardinals during the fourth quarter at Candlestick Park. The 49ers defeated the Cardinals 27-13. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

December 30, 2012; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith (11) prepares to take the snap against the Arizona Cardinals during the fourth quarter at Candlestick Park. The 49ers defeated the Cardinals 27-13. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers will enter their first matchup with division rival Arizona Cardinals riding the most momentum they have had all season. After trashing the St. Louis Rams in St. Louis on Thursday Night Football and embarrassing Matt Schaub and the Houston Texans last Sunday afternoon, the 49ers come into Sunday’s matchup with the Cardinals with an overall record of 3-2, one game behind the first place Seattle Seahawks in the division. However, this game will not be another easy one, as Arizona also enters the game with a 3-2 record, boasting one of the most complete and most underrated defenses in the National Football League.

Defensive ends Calais Campbell and Darnell Dockett are two of the most ferocious edge defenders against both the pass and the run. The return of Pro Bowl inside linebacker Daryl Washington last weekend only strengthens the front seven. Last but not least, the Cards’ secondary features arguably the best cornerback in the game in Patrick Peterson. The 49er offense will have their hands full attempting to grind yards out against this defense. So what are the keys to the 49ers escaping this potential trap game with a victory? Let’s dive in.

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Tags: Anquan Boldin Frank Gore San Francisco 49ers

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