Around the NFC West: Touchdown, Cardinals

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals arrived in Tampa early with the wind at their backs. Emotions ran high. Defensive end Bertrand Berry fought tears.

More from Somers, with Bob McManaman: Larry Fitzgerald is 15 pounds lighter this season.

Paola Boivin of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals don't mind the underdog role.

Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic examines the chilly relationship between Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt and Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says the Cardinals didn't seem to be relishing the spotlight during their first media session at Super Bowl XLIII. Anquan Boldin said he wished this were a regular week.

Also from Urban: A look behind the scenes as Whisenhunt and Adrian Wilson made an appearance on NFL Network.

Mike Tulumello of the East Valley Tribune provides an overview of the Cardinals' first day in Tampa. Wilson says the Cardinals are here to win the game, not to enjoy the week.

Scott Bordow of the East Valley Tribune says Super Bowls are won on Sunday and sometimes lost earlier in the week.

Mike Branom of the East Valley Tribune says about 1,800 people attended a rally sending off the Cardinals from Phoenix.

Revenge of the Birds' Hawkwind looks at the Cardinals' improved running game.

More Cardinals news here: A Google news feed with the latest headlines.

Clare Farnsworth of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer looks at the Seahawks' issues in the secondary. Farnsworth: "The most glaring shortcoming was the lack of a playmaker -- and size -- at the cornerback spot opposite Marcus Trufant. Kelly Jennings, a 180-pounder who is called 'Slim' by his teammates, started the season, but was not the answer. The coaches then turned to Josh Wilson, a more aggressive player, but one who is 5-feet-9."

Jim Moore of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer wants to know what Leroy Hill was doing in a 1975 Buick Electra when authorities found him passed out behind the wheel. Moore speaks with the motorist who reported Hill to police, and with car dealers versed in all things Buick.

Pro Football Weekly corroborates the Seahawks' potential interest in receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh, noting that Koren Robinson's knee issues are a concern.

Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune looks at what the Seahawks must do to become a Super Bowl team again.

John Morgan of Field Gulls sizes up Jovan Haye as a potential free agent of interest for the Seahawks.

Also from Morgan: He really likes Seahawks defensive tackle Brandon Mebane, for good reason.

Bryan Burwell of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says Rams fans should show patience with the team's new leadership. Burwell on the Rams' draft plans: "Of course, if you want guesswork, I can play along. Michael Crabtree. Yes, it has to be the game-changing wide receiver from Texas Tech. That's a popular pick, and it might even make sense if the Rams are able to sign a beast of an offensive tackle or two in free agency. But knowing what I have learned about the particular habits of the Rams' general manager, it's foolhardy to speculate what's on [Billy] Devaney's mind."

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch provides an update on the Rams' search for new assistant coaches. Paul Ferraro, Dick Curl and Frank Leonard have joined the staff.

Rick Herrin of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram says he spotted 49ers defensive coordinator Greg Manusky going out to dinner with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and head coach Wade Phillips. Herrin: "Could San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Greg Manusky be a possibility? He is good buddies with Wade Phillips and the two worked together in San Diego when Manusky was linebackers coach."

Jennifer Floyd-Engel of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram previously suggested the 49ers had fired Manusky. Floyd-Engel then provides an update reading, "Just heard from the 49ers, who say Manusky is under contract and, as far as they know, not going to be fired." Hmmm.