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Waiting on the practice squad

Posted by Darren Urban on September 7, 2009 – 9:26 am

The offices at the team’s Tempe facility are closed today, but the Cards are practicing. In the meantime, we await news of at least some of the practice squad — I am not expecting the full squad to be named yet, and apparently I was wrong and the Cards have not made any further adjustments to the 53-man roster. At least not at this point. The news broke yesterday that safety Aaron Francisco has landed on his feet when he was signed by the Colts, and I noticed that receiver Onrea Jones, who had a pretty good preseason, signed with the Redskins’ practice squad.


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Looking at the final cuts

Posted by Darren Urban on September 4, 2009 – 2:41 pm

Well, obviously I was off when I was coming up with my 53-man roster. I thought Lance Long cost himself a shot, I thought Aaron Francisco was ahead of Matt Ware, and I thought the Cards would want to keep a veteran like Victor Hobson over a rookie like Reggie Walker. I thought Elton Brown was in trouble and that Melvin Fowler would topple Ben Claxton in the battle to back up Lyle Sendlein.

Wrong on all accounts.

Nevertheless, the list is in. It’s not final by any stretch, and we’ll get a better idea of what coach Ken Whisenhunt was thinking at his 3 p.m. press conference. One thing is for sure — Whisenhunt and his staff are always looking to develop younger players. It’s the only way to survive in this league, so even if, for instance, Walker is a tad below Hobson, he’s likely got more long-term upside. This roster also clearly rewards hard work. You need talent, of course, but you see young undrafted guys like Walker, Michael Adams, Long, even Stephen Spach and you see the kind of mentality Whiz wants in the locker room.


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One possible 53

Posted by Darren Urban on September 2, 2009 – 6:44 pm

In a couple of days, the Cards and coach Ken Whisenhunt will make their final decisions on an opening day roster (or close to it), trimming another 22 players from the current squad to 53. So that means I make my annual guesstimate on who is in, who is out, and who is truly on the bubble. This is never a foolproof thing; if there is a guy or two who pops available on the waiver wire the Cards want it changes the dynamics of what can happen, and that initial 22 can grow by a name or two to bring in newbies. That certainly happened on the practice squad last year, when the Cards went shopping for new names who weren’t around during training camp.

Again, this is my opinion, based on what I have seen and heard but still my opinion. And it doesn’t factor in what happens in Denver and if a guy wows a coach or two. Or if a guy gets hurt. It’s also just about the 53; for instance, undrafted rookie LB Reggie Walker doesn’t look like he will make the 53-man roster but he’s a guy who should end up on the practice squad. (Speaking of which, * will designate some PS candidates):

QUARTERBACKS
IN
Kurt Warner
Matt Leinart
Brian St. Pierre
OUT
Tyler Palko

WIDE RECEIVERS
IN

Larry Fitzgerald
Anquan Boldin
Steve Breaston
Jerheme Urban
Sean Morey
BUBBLE
Early Doucet
Lance Long*
OUT
Onrea Jones*
Ed Gant
Steve Sanders

RUNNING BACKS/FULLBACKS
IN

Tim Hightower
Beanie Wells
Jason Wright
Dan Kreider
BUBBLE
LaRod Stephens-Howling*
Tim Castille
OUT
Reagan Maui’a
Chris Vincent

TIGHT ENDS
IN

Stephen Spach
Ben Patrick (doesn’t count against the 53 during 4-game suspension)
BUBBLE
Anthony Becht
Leonard Pope
Dominique Byrd

OFFENSIVE LINE
IN

Lyle Sendlein
Reggie Wells
Mike Gandy
Levi Brown
Deuce Lutui
Brandon Keith
Herman Johnson
Melvin Fowler
BUBBLE
Oliver Ross
OUT
Elton Brown
Ben Claxton
Carlton Medder
Trevor Canfield*

DEFENSIVE LINE
IN
Darnell Dockett
Bryan Robinson
Calais Campbell
Kenny Iwebema
Gabe Watson
BUBBLE
Alan Branch
Keilen Dykes*
Rodney Leisle
OUT
Alex Field

LINEBACKERS
IN
Chike Okeafor
Bertrand Berry
Clark Haggans
Karlos Dansby
Gerald Hayes
Will Davis
Victor Hobson
BUBBLE
Ali Highsmith
OUT
Reggie Walker*
David Holloway*
Chase Bullock

CORNERBACKS/SAFETIES
IN
Adrian Wilson
Antrel Rolle
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie
Bryant McFadden
Greg Toler
Rashad Johnson
Aaron Francisco
Ralph Brown
BUBBLE
Matt Ware
Michael Adams
OUT
Jameel Dowling
Wilrey Fontenot*

SPECIALISTS
IN
Mike Leach
Neil Rackers
Ben Graham


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