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Fitz plays for a ring and “wide open” CB spot

Posted by Darren Urban on July 23, 2017 – 12:02 pm

Some quick news and notes from media availability here on a quiet Sunday:

— Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald spoke for the first time. Of course, his future came up. He wants to win a Super Bowl. (Duh.) “That’s the only reason I’m playing at this point,” Fitzgerald said. He also said he doesn’t know what the future holds, and that he won’t make his decision about playing or not playing beyond 2017 based on what Carson Palmer or Bruce Arians do with their similar decisions.

(Full story coming right here).

— Arians said the No. 2 cornerback spot is “wide open” although he praised Justin Bethel’s play. Still a lot of speculation about whether the Cardinals bring in a veteran cornerback. It seems like Bethel — and Brandon Williams for that matter — will get a little time to show what they have.

— Along those lines, the two injured players from Saturday’s first practice were cornerbacks. Elie Bouka (ankle) and Jumel Rolle (hamstring) both were having MRIs Sunday. They both were hoping to be in that CB mix. We’ll see how much of a setback this is.

— On how No. 2 rookie Budda Baker has done early after missing all the offseason because of the school graduation rule: “He looks like a damn rookie.”

— Arians said he wants his defenders to get more hands on the ball after that first practice. He doesn’t want a rash of interceptions from his quarterbacks, mind you, but he would like a couple of picks a day.

— Lastly, there’s still a chance to get your picture in a Kickoff Magazine, the Cardinals’ official game program. Send your best photo of yourself, friends, or family wearing your favorite Cardinals gear. Submit the picture, your name and the town where you live to photos@cardinals.nfl.net. Fan photos will be selected based on size and photo quality.


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Posted in Blog | 16 Comments »


16 Responses to “Fitz plays for a ring and “wide open” CB spot”

  1. By Scott H on Jul 23, 2017 | Reply

    Yeah, the #2 CB spot is wide open alright…..a little TOO wide open, perhaps. I find it very disturbing that there really seems to be no idea who is going to play over there. Are we simply going to end up with whoever seems to be the best of a lot that seems…..average?? At best? Do we even know enough about any of them to know if they ARE even average?? And by the time we find out the answer to that question, is there gonna be anything we can do about it??

    Yeah, I know people will hear that as negativity. But if those aren’t valid questions…..

  2. By Erik on Jul 23, 2017 | Reply

    Scott H is right. Williams was flat out awful. Bethel is what he is. They need to go get someone.

  3. By Coach K on Jul 23, 2017 | Reply

    When its Keim time, you will see another corner signed if things don’t look good.

  4. By Joe Rassam on Jul 23, 2017 | Reply

    I don’t know that Bethel is the answer at the other CB position.

  5. By aschatte on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    @Scott H – Its never negative if the right questions are being asked and you are asking the questions which should be asked by every informed Cardinal fan. “When its Keim time”, “Coach knows best”, “Doesnt matter, we have PP”, “Bethel will be amazing”…all these bizarre statements wont help us when the guy opposite Peterson keeps getting burned day in and day out. Its awful that we have done nothing to inspire confidence at this position and we still dont know who the starters are?? Remarkable decisions to let Powers and Rashad walk and boy this is coming to bite us.

  6. By Scott H on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    Wait….did someone actually say Scott H is right? Man….that throws off my whole routine.

    But believe me, this is NOT something I want to be right about. I need someone to prove me wrong!

  7. By JTDG on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    The #2 CB spot is wide open…… And so are the receivers they are trying to cover.

    Been saying it for 3 years. Need a CB opposite Peterson. It’s pretty simple to see by everyone but Keim.

    And if you want to say Keim sees it, then why hasn’t he done anything about it since the departure of Cro after the 2014 season?

    Oh wait, he drafted a RB to play CB. He has a special teamer in his 6th year who will finally show something he hasn’t in his first 5 years. . He drafted Rudy. That’s right. What are we worried about ?

    Meanwhile Sidney Jones is expected to be cleared to practice soon.

  8. By D on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    I agree this position should have been more seriously addressed in the past drafts, especially this year since it was suppose to be a great draft for corners.
    I probably would have drafted S. Jones in Round 2 over B. Baker, who is a clone of Honey Badger. But it appeared that the entire brain trust was in love with Buddha for months leading up to the draft so I can see their reasoning.

    Now, I know this young 3rd round WR (Williams) is getting positive praise that AZ drafted this year, but I would rather had drafted R. Douglas, 6’2 210 that Philly took after the Williams pick. I see CB as a bigger need than WR on this team. With Brown & Brown along with JJ Nelson, this team has more good depth at WR than at CB #2. We will see how it will play out.

  9. By James on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    We Fans need to look at FACTS and give BETHEL a Chance…

    .December 2015… Cardinals sign Bethel to a 3yr/15mil deal to be 2nd corner opposite Peterson. Peterson says “Bethel can be better than me”.

    April 2016….Bethel fractured his foot and had surgery and missed all ota’s and summer practices.

    July 2016…..Bethel re injured his foot while training.

    December 2016…..Bethel said he was healthy again and in games 16 and 17 had 11 tackles, one 68 yard pick six, 4 passes def. and allowing only 13 yards in game 16 and 36 yards in game 17 against Russell Wilson. ProFootballFocus ranked him as one of the top corners in the league in those 2 games.

    March 1st 2017…..Coach Arians said on Arizona Sports radio- “I have Confidence in a Now-healthy Justin Bethel can take over”.

    April 2017…..He hasn’t practiced for two years on that broken foot,” Arians said. “He can now have a chance to really compete as a corner and get better rather than just throwing him out there when we had to have him. That’s not fair to him. But I think he’s going to really, really take off with it this spring.”

    .June 8th 2017…..”Justin probably had five or six interceptions in the spring,” coach Bruce Arians said. “He’s been struggling for two years with that foot and he looks extremely healthy right now, knock on wood.”

  10. By chris on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    The dude that talked about Powers and Rashad being kicked to the curb 2 years ago is right. Rashad might not have been the best athlete, but he was smart and he held the back end together with good communication. The Pats last year only had a couple of big plays that game. We talk about the specials teams, o-line, and the play calling. I think we beat the Pats week 1 with Powers and Rashad in the game. BA talked about how that game changed something for the Cards

    Having said that if nobody steps up on this roster Keim will find somebody. He did it last year. People talked stuff all year about CB2. How many would love to have Cooper on the team now? Bethel is healthy lets see what he can do and trust the GM to fix it if it really is broke. I am not so sure there is a problem.

  11. By michael on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    James,

    One fact you left out:

    January 2016… Before all these injruies, Jerrod Powers goes down with an injury. Bethel is forced to play CB2 vs the Packers in the playoffs. Early in the game, Randall CObb (WR1 for Green Bay) goes down with a rib injury, effectively leaving Bethel to cover their WR3. Bethel goes on to get burned left and right and allows Green Bay to almost steal the game.

    when he was healthy, he didn’t show much, in the game in which the most was required of him.

  12. By JTDG on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    James,

    Facts;

    Everything you said was talk. 5 years down and you can point at a couple games in which he played inthe slot and played decent.

    Go back to the Packer game in 2015 (when he healthy) . Pack picked him apart.

    Give him a chance? This isn’t little league where everyone gets a trophy. You earn a chance in the NFL. He hasn’t shown anything to warrant a chance.

    Let’s say the cards name him starter and don’t bring in someone because PP said Bethel could be better than me. Then he is eaten up the first 4-6 weeks. What do you do? At that point, it is too late. Now, off to another offseason of hope.

    If they were smart, you would have brought in a CB or drafted one. Let’s say they drafted Sidney Jones in round 2. All you have is competition. If Bethel is good, he earns the spot . If not, you have a legit CB who would take the spot.
    That is smart, prudent , and what Keim should have done.

  13. By Scott H on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    James –

    Hey, I’m on your side here. Yes, we do need to give Bethel a chance. And I hope that he does turn out to be the guy we need on the other side.

    But if we’re looking at facts, let’s look at all of them. Because it is also a fact that Justin Bethel has not played effectively as a CB in the NFL. You can’t expect people to overlook that.

    Let’s also consider that all of the injuries that you are pointing out are NOT encouraging! Hard to be an effective player, ay any position, when you keep getting hurt. Heck, for all we know, Troy Niklas is every bit as good as Rob Grontkowski. We just don’t know it because the guy is never able to play.

    Also, let’s take the comments made by his teammates and the HC with a grain of salt. I mean….are you really expecting those people to say anything different?? When Peterson says “Bethel can be better than me”…..are you really buying that?? Peterson has also said he thinks HE is the best CB in the NFL. So, that must mean he thinks Bethel can be the best CB in the NFL. OK. Again, what are you taking from that? Are you really waiting for that to come true, or is that just a guy giving a teammate some props? I’m going with the latter.

  14. By Scott H on Jul 24, 2017 | Reply

    Erik / JTDG / aschatte / michael –

    You guys are my kinda people!

    Bottom line – Bethel is a huge question mark. And a huge gamble. And as myself and JTDG have specifically pointed out, if we take this gamble and we lose, then what? Next man up? Really? Because the next man up would be somebody who wasn’t able to beat out Bethel in the first place. There ain’t gonna be any really good / healthy / ready to go CB’s sitting at home on the couch in October. You can’t just dial one up any time you need one.

    Has seemed likely all along they would bring in a veteran to add to the mix. WHY they haven’t done that already…is beyond me. You HAVE to know you need one, just for the sake

  15. By michael on Jul 25, 2017 | Reply

    The only thing I can think of is that the veterans hwo Keim rated above his current options were looking for longer deals. a prototypical Arians CB like Brandon Carr (6′, 210) got 2yrs, $12M from the Ravens, likely a bit rich when others need to be extended next year. Still scratching my head on Jason McCourty, as that deal was 2yr $6m with like $2m guaranteed. Perhaps his injury history was a concern. I think we all have to hope that conversations were had its all about price. Which makes the Pats visit make even more sense – Flowers agent already knows Cards have interest, just drive the pric eup a bit with the interest of the Pats. And while that may have scared the Cards off earlier in the offseason, it’s just too late to not bite now.

  16. By Scott H on Jul 25, 2017 | Reply

    Damn…just realized I sent that last post before I’d finished it. Anyway, the point was, regarding a veteran CB, you pretty much know you need one, even if only for camp competition’s sake. So….get there. Get someone in the mix you feel DOES have a chance to come in here and take over the job on the other side.

    Heck, if I’m a veteran CB sitting out there right now, knowing I can still play….I think I’m hoping the Cardinals give me a call and say come on in. Because looking at the competition for that spot….I’m seeing that as a spot that is definitely winnable.

    @ Michael – I agree with you, Brandon Carr would have been – IMHO – the perfect guy for us on the other side.

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