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A DC announcement and Super odds and ends

Posted by Darren Urban on February 2, 2015 – 12:15 pm

That’s it. The NFL season is over.

It’s a weird feeling here at the Cardinals’ Tempe facility, because the Cards have been done for a while — yet with the Pro Bowl and Super Bowl in town (not to mention the many appearance opportunities for various players, Bruce Arians and Michael Bidwill) it ramped up quickly around here. And then, quiet. The Scouting combine starts two weeks from Wednesday, and free agency will start a couple weeks after that. Roster moves will begin to happen. The 2015 season will be on us quickly.

— Bruce Arians told me Friday he expects to make an announcement on the new defensive coordinator this week. But that’s all it will be, an announcement, because Arians is out of town this week so he wouldn’t be at any press conference. Arians also said all the changes to the coaching staff aren’t quite done, so maybe he’ll just wait to talk about it once that all is settled. As I’ve mentioned, all signs point to the promotion of outside linebackers coach James Bettcher to DC.

— The decision to not run Marshawn Lynch was not smart. (I do get trying to beat a goal-line defense, but again, you have the best battering ram in the league.) That said, how does a defense that is that good allow two long touchdown drives in the fourth quarter? Can’t happen, and is as big of an issue in my mind as the offensive failure at the end.

— The Cardinals’ facility is now 3-for-3 in Super Bowl winners. The Cowboys (for Super Bowl XXX), the Giants (Super Bowl XLII) and now the Patriots all practiced at the Cards’ Tempe home the week of their games in Arizona.

— Speaking of the facility, more makeovers are underway. The new weight room and cafeteria are closer to being finished, and now that the Patriots don’t need it anymore, the locker room is being torn down for renovations.

lockeroomteardownUSE


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Posted in Blog | 31 Comments »


31 Responses to “A DC announcement and Super odds and ends”

  1. By Casey Casebolt on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Hi Darren,
    Just a small feedback tidbit for an alum of Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kansas USA—and always proud to say the alumni site of the one and only John “Smokey” Brown!!!
    I and thousands of other small college football fans nationwide are proud to point out that MR. Butler of recent incredible SB fame, hails from University of Western Alabama—–a DIVSION 2 member of the NCAA as is Pitt State!! Hooray for those small schools, where football is truly fun, exciting and TRADITIONS abound!!!!
    Go Gorillas!

  2. By D on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    I can’t wait to see what Mr. Keim has planned for this offseason.

    If Fitz doesn’t want to play here next year at a reduced salary, it would be a blow, but if that does happen, I would like to see Mr. Keim replace him with Q. He would play for a low salary and be probably better in Larry’s role as far as blocking and physicality. If Q thinks AZ can beat Seattle next year, he would think about it…

    Yes, Q left on bad terms, but I believe his anger was more at Whiz and Graves who are both long gone…BA has a great rep among players, they all want to run through walls for him.

    I would also replace Ginn Gr with a young speedy draft pick.
    Add a dependable RB and Right Guard in Free agency. (Helu Jr. and C. Boling would not break the bank and improve the offense. )

    On defense, probably will lose Cro and D. Wiliams that will need replaced. Bethel will be given a chance at CB.They should be able to draft a Pass Rusher in Round 1 and a Inside LB in Round 2, hopefully L. Foote will be back to help guide the young LB’s.

    Seattle isn’t going away, Cards need to add pieces to their team to compete against them for several years to come.

    Vegas has Cards 30-1 as of today for winning it next year..hopefully after this offseason those odds will improve..

  3. By Marlin on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Looking at everything going on in the Valley this week…..getting text messages from friends across the country and overseas on how fabulous AZ looked on tv yesterday……and learning that Apple announced a $2B investment in AZ (Mesa)…….ya gotta love the “coming of age” of this community. Its all so very impressive. The folks running things at the Open and the Super bowl and Barrett Jackson and the Pro Bowl…et al…..have done a fabulous job.

  4. By rod (Eddie Goldman RD1) on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Something like 100 pass attempts happened this season from the one yard line with 66 TDs and only 1 INT (Last night)

    Seahawks ran the ball something like 15 times from the one with Lynch scored once.

    Better odds in this case was to throw it.

    The numbers are slightly off because I can’t remember the exact numbers but it wasn’t a terrible call.

    We expect Lynch to pound it there but he has been terrible from the one so I get it.

    Either way, I’m glad they lost!!

  5. By Dr. G. on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Notes:

    Seems like the Q is signed through 2015…not happening. (D)

    Worst clock mgmt I can remember this year – ending 4th Qtr – Seattle.

    Worst play call I can remember this year – to end the Super Bowl.

    Wondering if Marshawn Lynch has “something to say” today on play calling.

    Best result I can remember this year – Seattle loses in the Birds’s Nest.

    Somehow, we should feel vindication that Pete Carroll lost the SB..!

    Even with Palmer (gimping) and whomever, Cards still need to gear up at QB.

  6. By D on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Dr. G- Boldin’s cap hit in 2015 is 6.9 mil, I am guessing he will be released because of SF being over the Cap and the fact that Iupati, Gore, Crabtree, Culliver and Cox are UFA

  7. By Big Ken on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    A couple of mock drafts have us taking Devante Parker at the 24th. In regards to Fitz, weren’t we in this same position last year? The team converted a large portion of his salary to a bonus. He didn’t do us any favors back then, but will he now? Time will tell.

  8. By Scott H on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Don’t know about anyone else but I, for one, was absolutely THRILLED to see the Seahawks go down last night. And it was even sweeter HOW they went down! Ding dong, the wicked witch is dead! Oh, how sweet was that???? It is too bad it took the Patriots to deal the Seahawks a loss in our stadium, but….I’ll take it.

    First and foremost, I am just SOOOOO glad I didn’t have to watch the Seahawks celebrating another SB win. I am just SO DAMN TIRED of watching friggin Pete Caroll ( whom I do NOT like one bit ) running up and down the sidelines and out onto the field high-fiving his players and celebrating entirely too much. Sorry, but it comes across as rubbing it in. I think coaches at the pro level should show a little more maturity than that. It was absolutely priceless to see his face after the interception. So….thank you Patriots.

    And speaking of faces, how ’bout the look on Brady’s face after that ridiculous catch set the Seahawks up inside the 10??? After the Tyree catch in 2007 and the Manningham catch a few years later…..what must he have been thinking after that catch last night??? Perhaps something along the lines of “Are you F-ing kidding me????”

    But I was glad to see Brady celebrating a few minutes later because ANYTHING was better than seeing the Seahawks win again (🙂 ) and because I honestly like Tom Brady and I wanted to see him get another ring. Screw Russell Wilson! He’s a good kid and I have nothing against him ( except how he kills the Cardinals every time they play us ! ) but ya know what? He’s a kid and he has a long career ahead of him. He’ll be there again. Brady doesn’t have long to go and I think it’s really cool to see a QB win a ring TEN YEARS after winning his last one. Let Wilson feel some pain and let him grow up a little because of it. And if he can’t? Oh well. Then maybe he isn’t that great after all. What Brady did last night was cement HIS greatness once and for all. After the embarrassment that Peyton Manning was in last year’s SB, it was nice to see an old warrior take down the young whipper-snapper last night!

    SOOOOO damn sweet to see Brady shred the Legion of Boom for 300-plus and FOUR TD’s! And ya know what? I don’t want to hear a single Seahawks fan say ONE DAMN WORD about injuries. Injuries, my ass! They had Rusell Wilson all year. They had Marshawn Lynch all year. They had Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas all year. So, a few of their DB’s got a little banged up in the NFC title game. Gimme a friggin break, man. You wanna know about injuries? Look at what the Arizona Cardinals had to try to overcome this year. THAT was team affected by injuries. I don’t wanna hear a word about the injuries you had to deal with in the SB ( and ONLY the SB! ). We started having to deal with injuries ( AND suspensions AND strange disappearances ) before we even played a pre-season game! And it never stopped.

    Having to watch the Seahawks celebrate a SB win in OUR HOUSE would have been just about as bad as it could possibly get. Thank you, Patriots, for not letting it happen.

    And, now? Let’s go get one for ourselves! It feels like a sigh of relief now that this season-turned-miserable is now officially over. As of today, we turn and look forward.

    Or…maybe tomorrow we can start looking forward. I want to revel in that Seahawks loss and that look on Carrol’s face just a little longer! 🙂

  9. By Steve on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Kurt Warner can attest to how risky goal line passes can be when James Harrison jumped in front of Boldin and took it back for a TD, that play probably cost the Cards the championship.

  10. By Earle Smith on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    I disagree with all the hypocrisy about the Seahawks call. The explanation provided makes a lot of sense, but the hypocrisy is in regard to the end of the first half. Odds were definitely against the Seahawks to score a touchdown, and it was questionable they passed up a FG. Everyone thought they were a hero on that. It’s all about hindsight being 20/20, and everyone who has criticized the call in question is just a hypocrite, unless they include that play at the end of the first half. If they kicked a FG, the final play would not have made a difference unless they could make a 2-pt extra point.

  11. By Coach K on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    D

    I think the reality is, Fitz will play here because at his age I doubt any team is going to offer him a major big dollar contract. I cannot think of any team offering a jumbo contract to Fitz at his age and production level, granted it was not his fault.

    With Palmer returning healthy, Fitz will have his best opportunity to put up big numbers with the Cardinals. With John Brown and Michael Floyd on the field, Fitz can get single coverage and still dominate.

    He won’t get any better supporting cast anywhere else, and I doubt the money will be there.

  12. By Mr Robles on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Hey Darren I got a ? with the rules, I was watching our game Vs Seattle & noticing the same thing on run plays with them yesterday. They really lunge below the waist which creates big holes & players protecting themselves I thought that was illegal chop blocking? can you fill me in its usually RG RT or LG LT lunging ahead.

  13. By Darren Urban on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Mr. Robles —

    RE: Chop block

    A chop block is defined in the “box” as a low block while another blocker is engaged with the defender. If it’s one on one, you can go low as long as you are in front.

  14. By clssylssy on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    I could see Q going back to the Ravens before ever coming here…his departure was with much bitterness towards the front office and he hasn’t made that any secret, plus he loved Baltimore and the Baltimore fans loved him. No, the Seahawks aren’t going away, and now will be more resolute than ever to get back to take home the next Lombardi. They will, no doubt give Marshawn a new contract and will build to make it happen! With the Rams gaining in momentum, having decent draft position, and the taste of defeat fresh from the double defeat by the Cards they will be knocking on our door with a vengeance next season. Keim is going to have to do a whole lot better this time around with his draft than he has done previously to keep us competitive after we find out who we need to replace in addition to the weaknesses we need to fix.
    It was a great Superbowl and Pete Carroll isn’t the only coach to have made a wrong call, if it was one. We certainly saw some bad play calling of our own this past season! I find it a little embarrassing that there are so many sore losers among the birdgang hating on the Hawks who did an incredible job with injuries! Our beautiful stadium and the entire valley totally rocked for the entire world–pretty awesome for us, I’d say!

  15. By Dre on Feb 2, 2015 | Reply

    Can’t believe it either d run the ball or a roll out for the win. Dumb dumb that’s all I can say it was handed to them on a plater

  16. By John The Draft Guy on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Earle Smith;

    Hypocrisy??? Two totally different situations.
    In the first half, it was not for the win. There was still a half to go. Plus, from the 10, they felt they could run a play and still kick the FG, which after the TD, there was 2 seconds left, so an incomplete would have resulted in a FG.

    At the end of the game, needing a TD and you have a time out, you could have ran the ball, called a timeout and then made a decision, depending on how close you were. To top it off, The patriots had their timeouts, and with 39 seconds, could have got into FG position. By running the ball, it was safe way to see if you score, and if not, run time down to 20 seconds and take shots at the end zone.

    It was coaching 101 and the hawks blew it. Simple as that.

  17. By John The Draft Guy on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Boldin;

    The last thing we need is Q. We don’t need to get older at WR. Plus, who sits? Larry, Floyd, Brown?

  18. By John The Draft Guy on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Last comment about the super bowl;

    The hawks became a bunch of classless players sunday night.

    First, Baldwin, after the TD, pretended to pull down his pants and do something over the AFC symbol, which drew a 15 yard flag, was disgusting.

    Second, sherman calling out Revis on the TD on the sidelines. Uncalled for.

    Then, after they threw the pick, and Brady was running out the clock, the hawks showed who they were by starting a sore loser fight and having a player get kicked out of the super bowl.

    Besides their QB, there is nothing classy about the seahawks, incluing their fans, who stole a 100 year tradition from Texas A&M, ( the 12th man, one of the greatest stories in football history)

    I hope we blow out seattle next year home and away. Remember, the last time Palmer faced them, he beat them in seattle.

  19. By John The Draft Guy on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Now on to the off season;
    Whoever wins the offseason will win the West.

    The niners;
    A new coach after an amazing run by Harbaugh has to be a step back. Coupled with salary cap issues and these FAs, – Gore, Crabtree, Iupati, and Culiver, they will need a special draft to get back to their winning ways.

    The Hawks;
    Super bowl let down will be the talk, but the most important piece is Lynch. If they can’t sign him, they will take a step back. They also have a big FA CB in Byron Maxwell, who did a great job on the other side of Sherman. Not to mention, their DC is off to Atlanta.
    The seahawks are the best drafting team in our division over the past 5 years and should be able to fill most of the holes. Provided Lynch back, the hawks will be a tough opponent.

    The Rams;
    For the rams, it just comes down to who is their QB. Bradford hasn’t lived up to the #1 overall pick and is often injured. We know their defense is good and a good draft will improve this team, but who is the QB? If Bradford, is he good enough?

    Cardinals;
    Will Larry stay or go? big question. Is the new DC going to be able to pick up where Bowles left off? Can we find that pass rusher? Can we get a running game? Can we improve the guard play? Frankly, all questions can be answered with a good offseason. Keeping Palmer upright is the key.

    Let the off season begin !!

  20. By Andy Kw on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Larry Foote makes a good point that Marshawn Lynch is sending the wrong message to kids.
    -Imagine if this happens in the Cardinals NFL Draft (this is very possible for AZ):
    1.) ILB Benardrick McKinney, Mississippi St. (6’5” 249lbs)
    -It is really simple: we need to build for the future. ILB Larry Foote is likely to retire and he does have a lot of trouble covering Tight Ends. Kevin Minter has disappointed this past season. I expect Daryl Washington to be back but at most miss 3-4 games in the season. McKinney gives us a young presence on the field with speed and has good ability to cover TEs. Everything we need.
    2.) OLB Eli Harold, Virginia (6’4” 250lbs)
    -This guy has improved each of the past 3-4 seasons at Virginia. His speed, strong run stopping skills, and quick burst off the edge is the guy that we absolutely need who should replace Matt Shaughnessy in the 2015 season.
    3.) WR Stefon Diggs, Maryland (6’0” 190lbs)
    -Maryland is my home state and so I know the impact Diggs brought to the University of Maryland Football team. This guy plays extremely well in the slot but he also excels as a kick/punt returner. I think we all know WR Ted Ginn Jr is likely to get cut by the Cardinals. I know that Diggs had an injury (lacerated kidney) but he has rebounded and played again. He is past his injuries and I think he is truly an upgrade over Ginn. With Ginn likely to get cut and the Jaron Brown injury, Stefon Diggs would be an excellent draft pick (high risk high reward pick). If it wasn’t for his injury, he’d probably be a first round draft pick.
    4.) OT Sean Hickey, Syracuse (6’5” 300lbs)
    5.) DE Anthony Chickillo, Miami (6’4” 282lbs)
    6.) CB Ladarius Gunter, Miami (6’2” 198lbs)
    7.) OT/G Jamil Douglas, Arizona St. (6’4” 300lbs)
    7.) TE C.J. Uzomah, Auburn (6’5” 264lbs)

  21. By Scott H on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    JTDG –

    I agree, I find little that is classy about the Seahawks. And I think is starts with their head coach. Players just always seem to follow the example set by their coaches. Geez, remember what idiots many Cardinals players turned into during the Buddy Ryan years? It was embarrassing. Anyway, Pete Carrol is just way too immature and demonstrative for a head coach. I have no doubt his players love him and want to play for him, but….real easy to love a coach and act any way you want when you’re winning. Winning covers up everything. But look what happened when it all fell through on Sunday and the Seahawks knew they were NOT going to win. Suddenly, it was Thunder Dome and their players didn’t know how to control OR conduct themselves. Yeah. Real classy, weren’t they?

    I agree with your capsules regarding the NFC West teams. The Cards are as good as anyone with Palmer healthy AND a better running game.

    Seahawks are NOT the same team w/out Lynch. But I don’t see how they let him walk. They have done too good a job building that team to let the key to their offense get away. WITH Lynch, the Seahawks are not going anywhere. BUT if the Cardinals are healthy, neither are they!

    The Rams? All about the QB. With Bradford ( whom I am NOT sold on ) or no one any better than what they have had at QB, they are 8-8 again. They really can’t be any better. WITH a very good QB? They are an instant player in the NFC.

    49ers? Yeah, seems like a step-back year or two are coming. BUT I feel very sure they will continue to play the hell out of the other teams in the division, so…they will still be a team to watch out for for the Cardinals. They have ALWAYS been a pesky bunch.

    Going back to Buddy Ryan for minute, I don’t know that there has ever been a more welcome change at the head coach level than when they fired Ryan and brought in Vince Tobin ( whom I liked VERY much ). It was just so nice to get rid of that chaos and have a such a disciplined teacher like Tobin come in and settle everything down. Ryan was a disaster.

  22. By jason on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Matt Miller did a 7 round mock draft and I was impressed with the picks he made for the Cardinals.

    1-Bedardrick McKinney ILB
    2-Mario Edwards DE
    3-Hau’oli Kikaha OLB
    4-Reese Dismukes C
    5-Lynden Trail OLB
    6-Wes Saxton TE
    7-Kaleb Eulls DT

    I’ve researched our salary cap and it isn’t as dire as most people think. If you research it on spotrac.com you’ll see were about $8.6 million over which you could erase with two cuts (Dockett & Powers). With several other contracts that would save us $$$ and the Fitzgerald renegotiation and we’ll be active in FA. I’m excited for next season.

  23. By John The Draft Guy on Feb 3, 2015 | Reply

    Andy KW,

    Why do you want Mckinney so bad? He is a thumper who will struggle in coverage. Not sure why we want another Minter?

    Harold will not be there in round 2.

  24. By clssylssy on Feb 4, 2015 | Reply

    Coach K & others…
    If Fitz stays, I believe it will be less about the money and more about his ties to the community. That said, I have, at last, made my peace with the real likelihood that he will not be in Cardinal red next year. It seems there are those who want to trash Marshawn Lynch for not being “a role model” because he has tried to set some boundaries with the press (is willing to pay the petty fines at the same time having some harmless fun with them) and yet see no value in having Fitz, the poster child for sportsmanship, in Cardinal red even though he has been jumping through hoops with his contract for years trying to work with an ungrateful franchise who has campaigned to make him the bad guy in all of this! And people think the Seahawks have no class?
    There are players on every team who go to extremes, but controversy is what drives the NFL and puts $$$ in their pocket–this is the entertainment industry! The Baldwins, Shermans and Lynchs are giving the public what they want for their money and if the fans didn’t like it, they wouldn’t continue to buy their merchandise and would watch college football instead. As for stealing the “12th man tradition”, there is such a thing called “copyright” to protect against such things, so, it must not have been that big of a deal. Perhaps fans need to do a better job of parenting and not depend on professional sports to teach values because the Larry Fitzgeralds seem to be an endangered species.
    I really don’t get the animosity towards the Seahawks just because they are our division rival and have beaten us a few times; we beat them too in their house last year and they used that to get better; we could do the same rather than making excuses and being poor sports. I believe playing in the toughest division in the NFL has made us better and that playing the Hawks, 9ers, and Rams twice a year is a gift. With the schedule we have next year, we are about to be tested!

  25. By Coach K on Feb 4, 2015 | Reply

    Another alternative mock draft covering needs.

    1. Shaq Thompson, OLB, Wash.
    2. Denzel Perryman, ILB, Miami
    NOTE: If we were lucky enough to land these first two players, we could stop
    the draft at this point and call it a winning draft.
    3. Donovan Smith, OT, Penn St.
    4. David Cobb, RB, Minn.
    5. LaDarius Gunter, CB, Miami
    6. Adam Shead, G, Oklahoma
    7. Sean Mannion, QB, Oreg. St.
    7b: Jake Smith, C, Louisville

    I moved Gunter and Donovan up a round based on projections
    Removed Max Garcia and Erving. I love Erving and his ability
    to play any 0-line position, but if Shaq Thompson fell for #24, I
    have to take him. He is simply too dynamic a play to pass on.
    Perryman will probably not last, he might not get out of round 1,
    but I’m hoping he is there with the second pick. He is another
    game changer (instant starter). Like I said, give me Shaq and
    Denzel, and my draft is over at that point and I’m celebrating.

    Everyone else is just icing on the cake.

  26. By Andy Kw on Feb 4, 2015 | Reply

    JohntheDraftGuy
    I think ILB Benardrick McKinney is the best ILB in the draft. He has speed (which both Foote & Minter lack) , he has the size at 6-5 (where Foote and Minter are short), and he is going to help improve our team. Younger and faster ja what we need. Eric Harold will fall to the 2nd Round, I guarantee it. Projected by many to fall into round 2. There are guys like Fowler, Ray, and so many other pass rushers that he will fall to round 2. I remember last year when you said you didn’t want Deone Buccannon to be drafted when I continued urging it. He is a good tackler with speed. This year will be his breakout year. If we get Beasley or McKinney in Rd 1, and Harold in RD 2, I’m sure our Defense will be a lot stronger.
    Seattle has built their D on young fast players and with Beasley or McKinney and Harold, I guarantee our D will be better than Seattle in the upcoming years.
    (DE:C.Campbell, NT:D.Williams, DT:D.Dockett)
    (OLB:A.Okafor, ILB:B.McKinney, ILB:D.Washington, OLB: E.Harold)
    (CB:P.Peterson, CB:FA Vet)
    (SS:D.Buccannon, FS:T.Mathieu)

    Sign a cheaper vet than Cromartie like Chris Culliver to a 2yr deal

    If we can draft Reese Desmukes in the 4th RD and sign FA OG Orlando Franklin, have Coop healthy,our run game will be a lot better.
    (LT J.Veldheer, LG J.Cooper, C R.Desmukes, RG O.Franklin, RT B.M)

    Drafting Stefon Diggs for the KR/PR game already improves our ST.
    He could potentially be our #2 Wide out with John Brown perfect for the slot and Michael Floyd moving to #1 in near future.

  27. By br in nc on Feb 4, 2015 | Reply

    Coach K
    The last thing the Cardinals need to do is stop drafting after 2nd round, even if we got 2 top 10 prospects because they fell down the board for some unknown reason.
    Hell, the Cardinals find way more hits in rounds 3-7 than they do with the first 2 rounds, at least so far, I realize its very early in SK/BA draft history, but if you look at it the later rounds have been far more impressive for the Cardinals!

  28. By Coach K on Feb 4, 2015 | Reply

    br in nc

    Of course I was only expressing my extreme satisfaction if two blue chip, instant starters with sub 4.5 speed were taken in the first two rounds. Of course I value all rounds and yes, we need all of them, but to land two immediate starting linebackers with blazing speed would make my draft.

    Of course, we need inside O-line upgrades as well as a bigger running back to counter Ellington. But i stand by my statement. If by some miracle the Cardinals were able to draft Thompson and Perryman with the first two picks, the remaining rounds would be nothing more than a bonus to me.

    Speed Kills. And these two are instant game-changers.

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