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Poll: The toughest venue in the NFC West

Arizona Cardinals receiver Steve Breaston provided the line of the day so far when ESPN's Adam Schefter pointed him toward our rankings for toughest NFL venues.

"Where's the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis," Breaston tweeted.

At this rate, Breaston could be headed for a spot in Paul Kuharsky's Twindex featuring the best NFL offerings on Twitter. This one was solid in delivery, content and syntax.

Back to the subject: toughest venues. Qwest Field was the only NFC West venue to draw votes when our eight panelists ranked their top 10. Venues do not win games by themselves, of course. Fans need something to cheer about.

The Edward Jones Dome can be deafening when the St. Louis Rams are playing well. I expect that to become a tougher place to play as the Rams continue to grow with Sam Bradford. The elements and a slippery field make Candlestick Park tough at times. The Arizona Cardinals' playoff games at University of Phoenix Stadium were memorable for their atmospheres.

Strong defense helps get the most from home crowds. People respond to the physical nature of the game, which manifests itself most clearly on defense. The Rams have Bradford, but they were better on defense than on offense last season, and they drafted for defense in the first round this year.

Things to consider when projecting which NFC West venue will be toughest for visitors this coming season.