Cardinals’ Mathieu: Seattle Seahawks ‘kind of in our way’

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Free safety Tyrann Mathieu #32 of the Arizona Cardinals celebrates after an interception during the second quarter of the NFL game against the San Francisco 49ers at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — The Arizona Cardinals went back to work on Tuesday, and no one pretended that next Sunday night’s game at Seattle is just another one on the schedule.

“Those guys are kind of in our way,” safety Tyrann Mathieu said. “We want to go somewhere, and we have to go through those guys.”

A win for the Cardinals (6-2), and Arizona would have a three-game lead over the Seahawks (4-4) in the NFC West. A loss and Seattle would be very close in the rearview mirror, one game out with seven to play, including the regular-season finale in Arizona. And the Cardinals have a rugged schedule between now and then.

“We’re playing a big division game on the road,” coach Bruce Arians said. “To win division games on the road, they’re huge. This is our defending champs and we have a chance to go up there and win again.”

Under Arians, the Cardinals have beaten the Seahawks once in four tries. That was two years ago, a 10-7 slugfest in Seattle. That Seahawks team went on to win the Super Bowl. Last year, Arizona was without Carson Palmer in two losses to a Seahawks team that repeated as NFC champions and lost a wild Super Bowl to New England, a game played in Arizona’s home stadium.