Tuesday, September 30, 2008

When planning for a road trip, there's no magic formula

Meant to post sooner about coach Ken Whisenhunt's decision to keep his Arizona Cardinals team on the East Coast for two weeks as the club had consecutive road games against Washington and the Jets.

A couple of things are at play here. First, Coach Whisenhunt was trying to cut down on the cross-time-zone travel to help keep his team fresh. It also gives his team a chance to bond a little more. Third, he's experimenting with doing things differently, testing and trying various strategies and techniques to revive a franchise that's struggled for a long time.

In his words:

"It's well noted whenever you travel across the country and you change time zones, that it has an effect on your body. And this is a physical game. We're trying to be a better road team, and last year we weren't that good, and hopefully this is just something that will give us a better chance."

In theory, it's a good idea that shows Coach Whisenhunt is trying to be creative. The problem is that these are pros -- men who've just recently come off of the long grind of training camp and who have families. Going on a two-week business trip -- for anyone -- is tough.

According to Redskins coach Jim Zorn, who played and coached in Seattle for more than a decade, "There were times when we would come out on a Friday and we'd lose. [Then we'd] come out on a Saturday and we'd lose. And then we'd come out on a Friday and we'd win, and we'd come out on a Saturday and we'd win. So you realize there's no magic formula."

The Cards, by the way, lost both games.