The Arizona Cardinals entered their bye week with the NFL's best record at 9-2, and will also enter their Week 13 matchup with the Chicago Bears with the same honor despite the Green Bay Packers being a half-game behind the team at 9-3.
The bye week gave the Cardinals an opportunity to step away from the grueling schedule required of a professional team on a daily basis, allowing players and coaches to recharge their batteries for what many hope to be a special ending to the season.
Arizona also looks to field a relatively healthy squad moving forward, with star players such as quarterback Kyler Murray and receiver DeAndre Hopkins (along with others of course) having an extra week to work their way back through nagging injuries that have kept both out the prior three games.
Healthy. Recharged. Reloaded. The Cardinals are ready to capitalize on one of the best starts in franchise history.
They'll finish the season with an ideal stretch of games, too.
Of the six remaining games left for Arizona, only two (Los Angeles Rams and Dallas Cowboys) have a record above .500.
The Rams, sitting two games behind the Cardinals in the NFC West at 7-4, have already been defeated by Arizona earlier this season and will travel to State Farm Stadium for a Monday Night Football matchup in two weeks.
Meanwhile, the Cowboys have lost three of their last four games, as Dallas in currently in the midst of their own struggles.
The only team at .500 is the 6-6 Indianapolis Colts, which is set to visit Arizona on Christmas Day.
The remaining teams (Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions and Seattle Seahawks) all have poor records, with the best record coming from Chicago's 4-7 out of the trio.
While Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury deflected Oklahoma rumors, he did re-emphasize his team's consistent focus on whatever opponent was in front of them.
“Yeah, I don't get into those things," Kingsbury said Monday. "My sole focus last couple weeks has been the Chicago Bears and after watching on Thanksgiving, it needs to be because they're a really good football team and had a big win. And so that's where my focus has been."
With only one bye week in each conference for the upcoming playoffs, the Cardinals are in the driver's seat to contended for the NFC's No. 1 seed. A combination of supreme talent and favorable schedule makes Arizona favorites to finish at the top of the conference.