Matt Who??

Ohhhh, yeah, Matt Leinart…3rd year QB from USC who broke his collarbone in Week 5 last season.  I remember him….kinda.   (Actually, I do remember him as I got his autograph at the Chargers/Cardinals preseason game last season!  Although he did seem a bit peeved that I was clad in a Philip Rivers jersey.)

Anyway, in spite of the questionable photos of a smokin’ party hosted by the star QB last month, he is back on the field, practicing once again, and trying to more effectively assimilate Ken Whisenhunt’s offensive schema knowing that Kurt Warner is waiting in the wings.  Whisenhunt has repeatedly asserted that Leinart is the starter; however, nobody can deny the phenomenal statistics the ‘elderly’ Warner put up last season.

I suppose only time will tell how this story will end.

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(Source: azcardinals.com)


Have No Fear, Boldin’s Staying Here…

Anquan Boldin says it was news to him that he was unhappy in Arizona and wanted to be traded.  On the contrary, he has always wanted to be a Cardinal, and has no aspirations elsewhere.  With respect to his non-contract extension, he says he will let his agent handle it.

A sore hamstring caused him to miss Friday’s practice, prompting rumors to fly about his “unhappiness” with the team.

Ken Whisenhunt says that Boldin will, in fact, get a new contract; however, the urgency isn’t as pressing as Larry Fitzgerald’s was, for example.  Similarly, Darnell Dockett and Karlos Dansby are mid-contract negotiations, and Boldin says when it happens, he will be ready.  Additionally, Q states that whatever happens, it will not affect his performance.  Great news to Cardinals fans, if you ask me.

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(Seriously, does this look like an unhappy player??)

(Sources: nfl.com, azcardinals.com)


Rounding out the Draft

Chris Harrington (6’5″, 264 lbs), DE from Texas A&M was the Cards’ 6th round pick and will assume a LB position.

For their final pick, Arizona took Northern Iowa T Brandon Keith (6’5″, 343 lbs).

Both guys are happy to be coming to Arizona, and are expected to contribute great things to the future of the Cardinals.

For more information, click here.

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2008 NFL Draft – UPDATE, Day 2

In the 3rd round, the Cardinals snagged LSU WR Early Doucet, 6′ 209 lbs, as the 3rd guy behind Fitz and Boldin.  Much needed after Bryant Johnson left in free agency, while Doucet isn’t a speed guy, he is “a football player” who is likely to make a significant contribution next season.

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In the 4th rounds, Arizona selected another DE, Kenny Iwebema from Iowa, who already has ties with Cardinals’ defensive line coach Roy Aiken; and the entire team is happy about both Iwebema and Calais’ addition to their defensive unit.

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(Source: azcardinals.com)


Draft Day 1 Recap

With the 16th pick overall, the Cardinals selected Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, a Tennessee State University CB.  While still considering adding to the RB corps, the Cardinals have always had their sights set on Rodgers-Cromartie.  While labeled “raw”, the Cards’ coaching staff believes he will be an impact player, and tout his ball skills, size, and speed.  Oh, and he’s ecstatic to be coming to AZ, expressing his pleasure about going against Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin in practice – “the best” he calls them (and he’s right!) 

Check out all the details/stats about Rodgers-Cromartie here.

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In the 2nd round, after entertaining the prospect of drafting a RB, the Cardinals decided to add to the defense, drafting Miami DE Calais Campbell (6’8″, 290 lbs) with their 2nd pick at #50.  Campbell’s reaction after being selected?  “I love the Cardinals.”  Nuff said.

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Remembering a Hero

Nearly four years ago, the day before the draft in fact, Pat Tillman lost his life defending our country – and will never be forgotten by teammates, Arizona residents, football fans, and, quite frankly, the rest of the country.

To commerate his life, an annual Pat’s Run is run (for lack of a better term) in Tempe, AZ.  This year, a group of 35 Cardinals’ players, coaches and staff took part.

Darren Urban’s homage to Tillman can be read here.

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Pat Tillman (November 6, 1976 – April 22, 2004)


Difficult Dockett and the Draft

With all the new and improved and extended contracts circulating in Arizona, DT Darnell Dockett wants a piece of the action.  Subsequent to LB Karlos Dansby’s signing his $8 million offer tender, with the expectation, according to Cardinals’ GM Rod Graves, of getting a long-term contract to Dansby, Dockett has been obviously absent from voluntary workouts despite his 2006 contract extension, which has 4 years remaining.  The Cardinals’ position is that Dockett is “under contract” and if he maintains his high level of performance in the upcoming years, then a new contract will be considered; however, not at this time.

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Currently, the Cardinals have the #16th pick in the upcoming draft, with Ken Whisenhunt stating that the possibility to trade down is there, but they probably won’t be trading up.  With WR and CB having the greatest depth in this year’s draftees, Arizona’s desire for another RB to complement Edgerrin James and Marcel Shipp isn’t as positive as in previous years where an abundance of RBs existed.  To this, Whisenhunt stated, “Thank goodness for the juniors!”

(Source: azcardinals.com)


2008 Schedule – Right Here Folks!

Week 1 – 9/7 – at San Francisco

Week 2 – 9/14 – Miami

Week 3 – 9/21 – at Washington

Week 4 – 9/28 – at New York Jets

Week 5 – 10/5 – Buffalo

Week 6 – 10/12 – Dallas

Week 7 – 10/19 – Bye

Week 8 – 10/26 – at Carolina

Week 9 – 11/2 – at St. Louis

Week 10 – 11/10 (MNF) – San Francisco

Week 11 – 11/16 – at Seattle

Week 12 – 11/23 – New York Giants

Week 13 – 11/27 (Thursday) – at Philadelphia

Week 14 – 12/7 – St. Louis

Week 15 – 12/14 – Minnesota

Week 16 – 12/21 – at New England (in December, LOVELY….)

Week 17 – 12/28  – Seattle

For more information, like times and other team schedules, visit nfl.com.

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Good News for Flagstaff, the Lumberjacks, and the Cards

Everyone in Arizona (who doesn’t live under a rock….or a cactus) knows that the Cardinals conduct training camp in the beautiful (and high) mountains of Flagstaff at the Northern Arizona University (NAU) Skydome, home of the Lumberjacks.  Well, the turf, to be blunt, SUCKS!!  (Just ask RB Marcel Shipp who broke his leg and dislocated his ankle in 2004 in a “gruesome scrimmage injury” on the “ancient and rock-hard artificial turf” of NAU.)

Well, the Skydome is getting a natural turf upgrade (which began yesterday) under the direction of Dave Brown, NAU’s liaison to the Cardinals, and will be installed by the Austin, TX firm of Hellas Construction.  The new turf is the Matrix version of RealGrass is estimated to cost nearly $1 million, and is the same turf in the Dallas Cowboys’ new stadium as well.

Needless to say, the Cardinals are thrilled as they can actually practice during training camp without fear of injury.

Read the full story here.

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(NAU and the Skydome in Flagstaff, AZ)


2008 Preseason Schedule and Then Some…

The Cardinals kick off the 2008 preseason by hosting the New Orleans Saints on August 7th at 5:00 pm Arizona time on ESPN.  During preseason weeks 2 and 3, Arizona travels to Kansas City and Oakland for back-to-back away games; finally wrapping up the preseason at home against Denver on either August 28th or 29th.

While regular season schedules haven’t been finalized as of yet, in addition to twice playing division rivals Seattle, San Francisco, and St. Louis, the Cardinals will be hosting Minnesota, Dallas, NY Giants, Buffalo and Miami; with away games in Carolina, Washington, Philadelphia, New England, and at the NY Jets.

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On a side note, stud WR Larry Fitzgerald is not too happy with the impending hair length rule change.  He says, “I don’t think they should dictate how we wear our hair.  We should all be able to say how we wear our hair. But we are just hired hands here. We do as we are told.”  I’m sorry, but if someone was paying me $40 million over 4 years, I would don a green mohawk if requested.

By the way, I loved this picture (courtesy of azcardinals.com)…

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(source: azcardinals.com)