Whiz on defense, Haggans back, Beanie still sidelined

Posted by Darren Urban on November 11, 2010 – 2:29 pm

Coach Ken Whisenhunt wasn’t going to unload on his defense when talking about the unit Thursday, although he did acknowledge he thought they would have been more consistent then they have been. The defense has been unable to close the last three games, first allowing a stumbling Seattle offense three long drives late when the Cards were trying to rally, and then surrendering fourth-quarter leads against Tampa Bay and Minnesota.

“That has been a disappointment this year, that we have not been more consistent defensively,” he said. “That was an area we thought would be a strength. At times, you have seen what that is. It’s hard for me to complain with the turnovers they have created and the scores off of that, so I have to temper what I say. But as far as consistently be the defense we have seen at times — for a stretch against Seattle, for a stretch against Tampa, even for a stretch against Minnesota — that’s what we need to see more of.”

— Linebacker Clark Haggans finally returned to some work Thursday on a limited basis. Whether he can play Sunday depends. Whisenhunt said Haggans’ real test is Friday, since he had yet to do anything. Haggans said he felt good.

“I wouldn’t be out there running around, doing drills with Joey Porter and doing pass drops (if I was hurt),” Haggans said. “It was good to be back on the field with my guys and we’ll take it from there.” Haggans said he was “very confident” about playing Sunday.

— Haggans’ status as ‘limited’ was the only change on the injury report; running  back Beanie Wells (knee) sat out again, as did linebacker Paris Lenon (ankle). Whisenhunt said he expects everyone to practice Friday.

“Everybody will go (Friday) and we will determine who is inactive based on their health,” Whisenhunt said. “I feel good about everybody participating tomorrow. It’s pretty fortunate this time of year.”

Whisenhunt praised Lenon’s intelligence this season and said even with missed practice time, he didn’t think there would be any issues with Lenon playing his regular role as long as health permits.

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47 Responses to “Whiz on defense, Haggans back, Beanie still sidelined”

  1. By Brandon on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply


    Do you think theres more to this then just a shot the swelled beanies knee? It sure seems like it to me.

  2. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Brandon —

    RE: Beanie knee

    Why? Do you see something I didn’t?

  3. By Nick Pepe on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Darren- how would you classify the locker room atmosphere? Mood?
    Nick Pepe

  4. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Nick —

    RE: Locker room

    Normal. Guys aren’t thrilled to be on a losing streak, but it’s not like the room feels much different.

  5. By schmatty on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Did I miss something about beanie? His comments last friday, him being able to play sunday but only gettin 1 touch cause he didn’t feel comfortbale with the plays. Is it whiz that’s keeping him out of practice or beanie?

  6. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Schmatty —

    RE: Beanie

    Well, Whiz did say Monday it was missing practice time, but he said the knee didn’t respond well after warmups Sunday either.

  7. By joe67 on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I have heard several commentators comment on how Coach has done a good job keeping the lockerroom together and keeping the guys up. I belive his demeanor helps with this.
    We sure need a W Sunday. I just feel like something is going to happen and we are still going to be okay!!

  8. By jocards on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    One thing is certain, Beanie Wells can’t help much if he isn’t on the field. The guy seems to have some difficulty when it comes to being ready to go on Sundays. I’m not blaming him, injuries are what they are and I certainly can’t judge how tough a player is but the fact is Wells has already missed a considerable amount of time due to injury. It is frustrating for fans and I’m certain it is frustrating for him. I feel that given the QB play it would serve the team well to try and establish a consistent, solid rushing attack (I’m not sure the O-Line is capable of holding up their end of that) but it’s difficult to do that when one of your lead dogs in the backfield can’t stay on the field. Argh!

  9. By MIKEFLORIO on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    confusing what is real. The Cards are in a slump. Bad choices and decisions are a major factor. Playmakers arent producing, and then theres the defenisve issues. Man I bet we wish we had cody brown right about now.Whiz is losing his footing and slipping. LETS GO SUNS!!!!oh oops I mean Coyotes, lol wait cards, yeah cards lets go. HAHAHA dude u gotta love it man. were in the hunt and every game matters, this is football. Cardinals football. This is why I love this team. You never know who is going to show up week to week.

  10. By Tyler on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I don’t think it is very fair for Whiz to get down on the defense! Especially when it’s the end of the game like last sunday. Everyone keeps talking about how Derek did so great when he really didn’t do that great at all and he completely fell apart at the end of the game! Maybe the Defense would be much more effective if they didn’t have to play 85% of the games! I love our Cardinals and I avoid saying anything negative but I just don’t understand the hypes that have been surrounding and rotating from D.A and Max. And I tried remaining as optomistic as possible but it seems that is our weekest link among everything right now. I would love to see the stats of time of offensive possesion compared to defense. In my eyes it seems that our poor defense is just plain tired by the end of the game because of all the three and outs our offense has been having.

  11. By Eric on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply


    Off topic: It looks like temps will be around 70 on sunday with a few clouds. Do you think we can count on the roof being open? I hope so, now that Kurt is gone we can open the lid.

  12. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Eric —

    RE: Roof

    That decision probably won’t be made until Sunday.

  13. By Brandon on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    That’s kinda what I mean. No I havnt seen anything that you havnt I dont think,But If It’s just swelling He should be able to practice shouldnt he. I mean Hes not reacting well after warmups, From a shot that gave swelling? Do you think there is more wrong with his knee then just this then just this shot reaction?

  14. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Brandon —

    RE: Beanie knee

    All we are hearing about is the injection. Could there be more? I suppose that’s always possible, but I don’t think so.

  15. By Brandon on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Or better yet simplified. Is there a possibility that there more wrong then what we are hearing about?

  16. By ross on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Beanie – get well
    Tim – get ready (and some stickum)
    Hyphen – get ready

    H squared on Sunday.

  17. By OLD CARDS FAN on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    THE CARDS NEED TO WIN BIG AT LEAST 2 TOUCHDOWNS.To boost the confidence of the whole team and go on a 5 game win streak.BUT as a longtime cards fan i know this may be asking too much so i will settle for a last minute 4th quart. win. GO CARDS~!

  18. By ross on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I’ve decided Hyphentower is better than H squared.

  19. By Dre on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I am really sick and tried of hearing Whisenhunt blame everybody on the team for losing accept himself. Our defense played a heck of a game on the road in Minnesota. They had a goal line stance on a 17 play drive, on Minnesota’s one yard line with 6 minutes left in the game and only giving up 10 points at the time. It was the offense that couldn’t run time off the clock or even generate a field goal prior to the two TD’s that tied the game up.

    If it wasn’t for the defense and special teams we wouldn’t even had a chance at a win. The Cards had two possessions to run time off the clock. One possession was only for 1 minute and 31 seconds and the other was for1 minute and 05 seconds. The tying touchdown does not happen if the offense could have gotten 1 or 2 first downs and ran time off the clock. And since he chose the QB and is calling the plays that lost was on him.

    The only thing I saw wrong with the defense was A-Dub holding the slot WR Percy Harvin. Whoever put A-Dub on Harvin shouldn’t ever coach in the NFL again. The Cardinal prevent defense was been like this for ever. The only thing the prevent defense does is prevent us for winning. But how can you blame the defense when the offense only had 66 plays compared to their 87. The Viking had the ball for almost 11 minutes more the AZ and had more then twenty more plays. That’s hard to pull off even if we had 1985 Chicago Bears defense on the field.

    I wish people would talk about the real issues about this team and not just the popular QB garbage. I wish someone would challenge this coach and report the REAL storyline to this season. Cardinal’s FANS ARE TO DANG SOFT AND THE REPORTERS ARE TOO.

  20. By Chuck 1 on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply


    I think that you will probably not answer this question, but I’ll try.

    Assuming that
    1) there will be a season next year, and
    2) the roster remains essentially the same as today all the way up to the draft i.e. no career ending injuries

    What positions will the Cards draft and in what order?

    Oh, BTW, how many picks do the Cards have and in which rounds?


  21. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Chuck 1 —

    RE: Draft

    You know me well.

    No idea on positions and order is always a crapshoot to a certain extent. If you want to draft a QB in the first round, for instance, and you like two guys and they are both taken, you don’t take a first round QB that has a third-round grade. So things change.

  22. By Phoenixraven1 on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Anything on Hightowers missed assignments? Is this just mental errors or has he hit his ceiling of potential?

  23. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Phoenixraven —

    RE: Hightower assignments

    I would guess mental errors.

  24. By brad oneill on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I feel we are in the darkest regions of the season. all hope is lost, our defense has faltered, our aerial attack has been responsible for nearly as many opponent touchdowns as our own. Our running game lies somewhere between a distant hope and a broken promise.

    in this, our darkest hour is when our fearless king Whiz needs to call upon the wisdom of his forefathers, dennis greene, Joe bugle, buddy ryan, and gene stalling and say. i will not be you, i will not falter, i will not curse, i will not blame, i will win this next game, and i will do it by admitting i am not the be all and end all of football greatness. i will get help with my play calling.

  25. By Pat on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Dre, you are right. whiz sounds like a politician. No straight yes or no’s, just glib remarks. Adub is only valuable coming towards the line of scrimmage, not away from it. I feel the coaches are afraid to say that to him and let him cover, even though he has no chance. Warner covered all these warts and coaches are
    Eft with an ordinary lineup, that could be a 500 team, but coaches are lacking too as is Graves. He was a loaser for many tears until Warner and then got smarter? I don’t think so. Reality has struck and isn’t very pretty. Truth will come out. They are mediocre just as before Warner caught lightning in a bottle. Have to enjoy those three magical years. They are back in the muck of mediocrity because their GM and coaches are mediocre too. Grimm didn’t get into the Hall as a coach and never will.

  26. By jocards on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    You know what? This team has plenty of problems. Offense is bad, Defense is bad and Special Teams have been mostly good but are also directly responsible for the loss in Seattle. I’d say the offense played a big role in the loss in Minnesota….not being able to generate a 1st down in the final 3 possessions really hurt but the defense must share blame. I’d agree with the notion that the D played pretty well….except of course when we needed them most. That is the really big issue with this team they just can’t make plays when they really need to on either side of the ball. Let’s hope they change that come Sunday because a loss might just start a slide that can’t be stopped.

  27. By adam on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply


    Sando picked Steve Breaston as the Cardinals’ 1st half MVP. Who would you pick? I think I’d go with Kerry Rhodes. Surprisingly, I think Paris Lenon could be considered.

  28. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Adam —

    RE: MVP

    All good choices. Stephens-Howling should also be considered.

  29. By Scott H on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Hate to say something so dramatic, but this game against Seattle could be the season for the Cardinals. Really. That’s pretty sad considering how bad the Seahawks are, but never mind that for the moment. Fact is that the Seahawks are a game up on us right now and they have already beaten us once already. Ugh. We lose this week, we will be TWO huge games back in the division to a team that has swept us for the season. They better win this week or we can all forget this there’s-still-a-lot-of-football-left crap. AND if they can’t beat the Seahawks at home after the Seahawks have scored 10 total points in their last two games, there’s no point to playing another game this year. C’MON CARDINALS!!! Give us a reason to believe or stop wasting our time.

  30. By ross on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, what assignments has Hightower missed?

  31. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Ross —

    RE: Hightower

    I believe he has missed a couple of blocks in pass protection.

  32. By Chuck 1 on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply


    As expected, you didn’t answer my first question about position draft choices.

    However, I think that you overlooked my second question: How many picks do the Cards have and in which rounds?

    Thanks for all you do to keep us informed.

  33. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Chuck 1 —

    RE: draft choices

    I don’t have that info in front of me. Off the top of my head, I don’t believe there were any 2011 draft picks included in the trades they made this past offseason, so that would give them one pick on each of the seven rounds at this point.

  34. By Ryan on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply


    What do you think the chances are that Billy Davis is let go this off season? I feel he has underachieved with this defense since being hired and I didn’t agree with his hiring in the first place. He didn’t produce a good defense either when he was in San Francisco. How about Keith Butler linebackers coach from the Steelers, or Ray Horton defensive backs coach from the Steelers? Or maybe Mike Zimmer of the Bengals if Marvin Lewis is let go at the end of the season? Thanks.

  35. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Ryan —

    RE: Davis

    Like anything else, Davis will be evaluated. A lot has to do with how the defense plays the rest of the year.

  36. By scott023 on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I take my hat off to the players and most of all the ones that get blamed for the reason we lose. The truth is it’s graves, he is at fault, you bet. He let whiz destroy this team. Because he is trying to hold two jobs at once. If coach whiz wants to be an o.c. then lets get a head coach that can watch over both sides of the ball, and give the leadership we deserve. If he wants to be a head coach then we must find an o.c. and fast. A true leader stands up,admits that he is the coach and in the end the buck stops here! I think coach whiz is a smart coach (as a head coach). When he was a head coach and only a head coach,we had an o.c. Tod haley. We were great. The defense was great untill billy started the prevent defense,and let brett have all the time he needed to dice us up.He has killed us over and over. The reason I believe is that coach whiz was to busy as an o.c. to be a head coach.Then as an o.c.,we get pass rushed and no play calling to stop it.Screens,draws, and short passes. Then when we get our butts handed to us. The coach admits no fault for himself or staff. Everyone I talk to calls darren a puppet for whiz,not a true reporter.I tried to defend him. They ask when has he ever spoke up about him being at fault or even questioned his play calling ever? He has done it to the players,not the coach.Is this true darren? I sure hope not .We want and deserve a guy that will get to the bottom of issues. Please tell me they are wrong, can you give me an example to show them,just one would be fine. Thanks for the hard work .

  37. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Scott23 —

    RE: Whiz

    So if I don’t have a problem with the playcalling, I am a puppet? This needs to be explained to me.

    Are there individual play calls I scratch my head about? Sure. Take the interception at the end of the Tampa game. When it first happened, I couldn’t believe they didn’t run. But then you see the replay, you see Doucet wide open right in front of Anderson, and then you find it very hard to say, “Yep, a terrible play call.” Playcalling is one of the easiest things to second-guess in football, and yet one of the least easy to understand, because unless you are on the sideline or in the huddle, you can’t know everything going on.

    Generally, I don’t have a problem with the playcalling. If that makes everyone think I stink at my job, so be it. Do I think everything would be different if there was a dedicated OC here? No. Do I think, for example, if Todd Haley was here things would be dramatically different? No.

  38. By JimJam on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Somehow i don’t think the cards will need to worry about about ‘letting one slip’ against the seahawks.

  39. By NJAzCards Fan on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Darren is Steve Williams lack of playing time lately due to Breaston, Doucets return or is he still injured?

    Also, why have the Cards gotten away from their “We do this together” motto? I always thought that was very successful/meaningful.

  40. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    NJAz —

    RE: WRs

    Williams is healthy.

    Like everything, slogans run their course.

  41. By Money on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    JimJam —
    As a ‘Hawks fan, you should be cheered by the fact that the Cards will give your team plenty of extra chances to win, that’s just how we roll this season. In the last 3 games for us, we are -4 on turnovers, and your offense will likely have the ball 3:30 more than ours will for an average of 11 more plays. And, what a surprise, we’ve lost two of the last three games while the opponent was using those 11 plays! The exception is the game against the ‘Hawks; we packed that one in during the 3rd quarter. It is so funny how math and hard facts can work out like that!

    What we are really good at is fumbling, 21 so far! Second in the league if you like fumbles, so strip away! Oh, and sacks too, we love getting sacked! Only Jay Cutler has felt more pain!

    With the 30th and 31st best offenses on display, the punting units better be well rested. Go NFC West!

  42. By Dre on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply


    RE: Whiz/ play calling

    I didn’t have a problem with the play calling in the Vikings game…I mean I understood some of the things they did. But I was very disappointed that we couldn’t get a first down or a field goal during the last two drives before the end of the game. We gave up a bunch of sacks by the Vikes just rushing their front four. What I have a problem with is the coach not taking any ownership and not discussing the real reason way we lost.

    We have a good defense…they’re not great but they do have moments were you think they are getting close. What’s keeping them from being great is “the bend but don’t break” style they play. They are on the field way to long not to be vulnerable to the comeback at the end of the game.

    I have a problem with a story about a good defense that isn’t great enough to overcome an offense that can’t do anything for themselves and being called out for it. Why not write a story on trying to limit the other team’s possessions. If a team averages 13 possessions in a game let see if we can limit them to eleven of twelve. Both the offense and the defense together need to try and achieve this goal. We are a sub par offensive team right now and we need to do everything we can to level the playing field. It’s not about Fitzgerald having a 100 yard game or Howling returning a kick for a TD, yeah those are great side notes but that’s not why we are where we are.

    We are where we are because Whisenhumt have not stuck with the run long enough to make a difference. We have one of the biggest lines in the league and if they lean on the D long enough they will eventually tire and possibly give up big yards towards the end of the game, kind of like the Bucs did us in our own house. But everybody is worried about Fitzgerald and what he will do a year in a half from now. Fitzgerald will be fine and he will benefit more if this team can become a dual threat…when a team is winning games everyone is happy. We are where we are because Whisenhunt tried to make our QBs into something they’re not. Instead of taking the pressure off them with the run he force the issue making it worst.

    But I understand you work for the Cardinals and you just have to put your happy face on to get your check.

  43. By Darren Urban on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Dre —

    RE: Run game

    See, what’s the need for the cheap shot at the end of your thesis? That I don’t understand.

    So you say write a story about “trying to limit the other team’s possessions.” What exactly is that story? Sounds awful vague to me. You act like the offense, for instance, went out of it’s way to fail to get a first down at the end of the game last week. It is your opinion (and others, I know) that Whisenhunt doesn’t stick with the run enough. That’s fine. There is an argument to be made. But ultimately, it is simply an opinion. You can run whatever stats you want out there, but like the Leinart argument, you don’t know as fact it would change anything.

    The bottom line, the offense handed the defense a lead in Minnesota and in the end, the defense couldn’t make it stand up. The players on defense themselves have not blamed being tired. Why are you? We all know what this team’s shortcomings are. Running consistently is one of them. You have made it clear, at least by what I am reading, that this is all Whisenhunt’s fault. OK. Again, point taken.

    Maybe, for some people, I have too often used a “happy face.” I am fairly certain the amount of people on here who seem to revel in the “sad face” may be equally disappointing.

  44. By Dre on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply


    I refuse to let Whisenhunt off the hook by blaming the defense on that lost. We were on the road and handled Farve/ Peterson enough to have come out of there with a win. Peterson was held under 100 yards, Farve was sacked a couple of time and pick off twice…one almost for a pick six and the other in their end zone, plus came up with an awesome goal line stance.

    Our offense has the Greatest coach the Cards have ever had mitts all over it. Way do he get a pass on the lost…I mean all the Greatest had to do was to get a first down or two with about 3 minutes to go and game over. Pass the buck; I guess that is what we got in a head coach and all his little yes men.

    Anybody who knows a little something about football knew we couldn’t give Farve the chance to tie the game except some of you guys. I think you and Whisenhunt need to go back and watch what Brett Farve has done to the Cardinals if you two thought a 14 point lead was safe but I guess you guys know now. A first down is the least he could have done since special teams scored 14 point for him.

    One more stat since you love them so much. I saw some posts on DA and his great ’07 pro bowl year….it was said that he was brought here based on the success he had with the talent around him according to that year. Well, in ’07 the Browns had a running back named Jamal Lewis. Jamal only ran for 1,304 yard on 298 attempts and average 4.4 yards per carry with 9 touchdowns. I guess he forgot to pay attention to that important FACT. This is why I’m so frustrated. You guys act like the fans are stupid and the game on this level is too complicated to us to understand. I know I have preached this message of running the ball and it will relieve the pressure in the passing game all freaking year. This staff is a joke…I’ll root for the team but the brilliance of a few is too much for me.

  45. By Scott H on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    JimJam –

    That’s a pretty bold statement considering the way we’ve lost the last two games…I’d like to feel that way, too, but…this year??? I ain’t taking nothing for granted with the Cardinals. After last week? If the game is over for an hour and the scoreboard still says the Cardinals won, I might believe it! Shy of that? Forget it. I’d probably check the sports pages the next morning just to make sure they didn’t find a way to lose the game overnight!

    Honestly, the Seahawks have nothing to do with this game. They’re not good enough to come in here and win this game if the Cardinals play well. I agree with that. But the Cardinals can play bad enough to lose the game, and THAT is what worries me. It would be nice to NOT have to worry, but this team just never seems to take that away.

  46. By scott023 on Nov 12, 2010 | Reply

    Thanks darren, when the ones that called you a puppet read your answer,they were quiet (I have never seen them quiet). I know people are upset and want more. My answer to them is stay strong and together and we will win. We have a very good team. A great munch of players on both sides of the ball. The prevent defense must go away yesterday. We need fresh pass rushers in the fourth quarter or may be start with a set of pass rushers and the next set use a rotation with back ups playing too! We seem to do very well when we do (just a thought). Anyway thanks again darren,I like the quiet.

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