Found June 14, 2012 on
Fox Sports Arizona:
TEMPE, Ariz. -- After winning seven of their last nine games in 2011 to finish 8-8, the Cardinals -- despite missing the playoffs -- felt good about the momentum they had built. They felt even better after making a few key additions in free agency and the draft and now, after a productive stretch of offseason workouts, are even more excited about the momentum in place ahead training camp.
With minicamp wrapping up Thursday morning, Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt left his players with a message to keep in mind until reporting to Flagstaff on July 24.
"I said, 'Let's don't go backwards,'" Whisenhunt said. "We've made progress. I don't know how much progress we've made, and we've still got a ways to go, but the important thing now is that we dont take a step backwards."
Whisenhunt wants his team to take what it accomplished last season and in practices over the past few weeks and apply it right away in training camp. The offseason workouts, he said, were a nice primer for what's to come in five and a half weeks.
"I think what this has done, what the OTAs and the minicamp have done, is set our guys up to compete (in training camp), and that's really what it's got to be about," Whisenhunt said.
The recurring theme through three days of minicamp was the downplaying of everything being done in shorts and helmets. Whisenhunt and countless players stressed that only so much can be drawn from four weeks of non-contact drills and walkthroughs.
While the offseason workouts offered players and coaches a glimpse of the team's potential on both sides of the ball, all sides agrees that there is much more to come than what was seen in the last four weeks.
"We're just in shorts and helmets right now," wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald said. "Youre not seeing the full capability of the offense. I dont think we've been extremely sharp, but I think we've made some good things happen.
"We're practicing fast and the guys have a great tempo out there, but its different when the pads are moving. Training camp's not too far away, and we'll be ready to go when it's time."
BIG STEP FOR WILLIAMS
Running back Ryan Williams, who missed all of his rookie season with a knee injury, said Wednesday morning he was still unsure of his status for training camp.
The evening practice in front of fans at University of Phoenix Stadium may have helped him get a little better idea. Williams participated in 11-on-11 drills for the first time since suffering a ruptured patella tendon in his right knee last preseason and said it was the fastest he has moved since.
The progress has Whisenhunt encouraged that Williams will be ready to go come training camp, but the team will still be extra careful.
"I think mentally that was a big hurdle last night," Whisenhunt said. "I expect him to be ready to go in training camp. But we're not going to throw him in there and give him every rep. We're going to make sure we continue with the process of getting him ready for the first game."
The training camp and preseason repetitions, Whisenhunt said, are particularly important for Williams because he has such limited experience.
Beanie Wells, meanwhile, did not participate in any offseason activities as he rehabs a knee injury. The outlook for his training camp status is a little dimmer than for Williams, but Whisenhunt suggested Wells could be ready on some level by then.
"We've done the right thing with Beanie as far as the offseason, about making sure he's healthy and trying to get him ready," Whisenhunt said. "He's got to bust his tail over the next few weeks to be ready for training camp, because we've had some guys look good (at running back)."
Asked if tight end Jeff King (torn quadriceps) might be ready in time for training camp, Whisenhunt said he couldn't offer a solid timeline. King has probably another five weeks of rehab, and Whisenhunt said he probably hold him out a little longer even if he is ready at the start of camp.
Fitzgerald was asked Thursday if he thought the team had a second receiver at this point, but he didn't take the bait.
"We've got 10 guys on the roster right now," Fitzgerald said. "We've got a lot of receivers."
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt was asked Wednesday if he would ideally like the quarterback competition to resolve itself early in training camp.
His response: "If it was up to me, I'd prefer we had a quarterback resolution two years ago," Whisenhunt said, eliciting laughter. "Obviously that hasn't happened, so when it happens it happens....
WE DON'T NEED YOU!
According to a tweet from a beat writer, quarterback Kevin Kolb was booed during Wednesday night’s minicamp practice, also known as “Fan Fest 2012.”
Whatever goodwill the Cardinals established with their fans via last year's 7-2 finish apparently hasn't carried over to Kevin Kolb. The Cards' 65 million man, who played just one of those final nine games (an overtime win over the Cowboys), was booed Wednesday night during a practice at University of Phoenix Stadium that doubled as the team's annual "Fan Fest...
Darren Urban of azcardinals.com confirmed that Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb was indeed booed at a fan fest.
Yes, unfortunately. RT @_Fresh90s: @Cardschatter was Kolb really booed? #INeedAnswers
— Darren Urban (@Cardschatter) June 14, 2012
Fans responded to Urban and made it clear that Kolb needs to earn their respect.
@Cardschatter @_Fresh90s Kolb’s got a lot of work to do...
The Cardinals are one of several teams holding a competition for starting quarterback this offseason. They traded a 2nd round pick and a starting cornerback for Kevin Kolb last offseason and gave him a 5 year deal worth max 63 million, but John Skelton arguably outplayed him last season, putting up similar stats and going 6-2, as opposed to 2-6 for Kevin Kolb.
When asked about the...
TEMPE, Ariz. -- While the quarterback competition and the depth chart at receiver are garnering the most attention during spring and summer workouts, there's another component of the offense could have just as much impact on the Cardinals offense this season.
With new additions via free agency and the draft, the Cardinals are working to blend the offensive line into a cohesive...
Kolb only resembles someone awesome
You know rock bottom of the NFL off-season is fast approaching when news of Kevin Kolb being booed on account of being Kevin Kolb by 15,000 Cardinals fans at a fan fest counts for standalone post fodder, but it is!
Who wasn’t booed at the event? John Skelton, who despite having worse passing stats than Kolb, exceeds the jowly one in the far...
If there is anyone that is still reveling in Craig James’ embarrassing failed bid for US Senate, it is no surprise that it is Washington State head coach Mike Leach. Leach still blames James for his ouster at Texas Tech, after he locked the former analyst’s son in a shed after he complained of migraine [...]
According to ESPN’s John Clayton, John Skelton is giving Kevin Kolb “a battle” for the starting quarterback job.
I have a feeling that even if Skelton doesn’t win the starting job in training camp, he could end up taking over during the season if and when Kolb struggles.
I personally believe Kolb is an overhyped player that got more money then he deserved.
ONE OF THE TOP quarterback prospects in the West, Phoenix's Tyler Bruggman, is coming to Washington State to run Mike Leach's Air Raid offense, he tells Cougfan.com. The decision ends weeks of speculation around him that had narrowed in focus to Washington State or hometown Arizona State.
Editor’s Note: Our newest writer, Thomas Casale, runs a fantasy football blog at www.ThePigskinGuy.com. His column, “The Fire Sale,” is featured on CNN/SI every week during the NFL season. Thomas started writing about fantasy football in 1998 and his work has been published on a number of different web sites and magazines. We’re excited to announce his addition to...
MIKE LEACH has yet to coach a game at Washington State, but the new Cougars football coach may have scored his first major victory this week when he received a verbal commitment from Arizona all-state quarterback Ty Bruggman of Phoenix.