In the early days of the NFL, it wasn't uncommon for states in the Midwest, and further east to have multiple American Football teams. States like new York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio would keep some of theirs, but for the most part, cities and states would widdle down to one team, while the others would move, or disband.

At one time, two of the teams furthest west in the NFL were BOTH in Illinois. In fact, in the early days of the NFL, Chicago was home to both of them - The Bears, and the Chicago Cardinals.

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Today, the only NFL team in Illinois are "Da Bears." And they're still one of the longest tenured teams in the league. They're also one of the only teams to still play in their original field (for now), despite a number of upgrades to the stadium itself.

Before 1924, the Bears played their games at Wrigley Field, and even had a crosstown rival that played in Comiskey Park - The Chicago Cardinals, which we know today as the Arizona Cardinals.

The Chicago Cardinals in 1920
The Chicago Cardinals in 1920

Also one of the league's first teams, the Chicago Cardinals played their first games as an NFL franchise on the south side in the White Sox home turf, and at one time Split time with the Bears in Soldier Field after it was built.

But while the Bears maintained some consistency in playing at Wrigley Field, and eventually Soldier Field, the Cardinals got bounced around. They spent time playing their home games in Normal Park, which is now a Chicago Police Department facility that was built on the site in 1952, Soldier Field, and Comiskey Park.

But through the years, the Chicago Cardinals slowly became Chicago's "other team," despite winning an NFL Championship in 1925, and in 1947. Soldier Field was also becoming notorious as the home of the Bears, and NOT the Cardinals.

So, nearing bankruptcy, the owner, Violet Bidwill Wolfner, decided to move the team to St. Louis in 1960, which proved to be the right move.

Nowadays, even the Bears are considering a move, but across town, not out of the Chicago area, or Illinois. However, city leaders have said, if the Bears do move out of Soldier Field, they'd consider welcoming another team back to they city, and say they could support it.

History says otherwise, but only time will tell. Could the Cardinals make a comeback in Chicago?

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