An eye open, then adding a CB

Posted by Darren Urban on August 29, 2011 – 1:54 pm

The loss of cornerback Greg Toler to a knee injury is a blow, and it’s a tough coincidence that the two good players the Cards dealt in trades — Tim Hightower and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie — happen to play the positions where the two season-ending injuries occurred with Toler and Ryan Williams. In the meantime, coach Ken Whisenhunt continued to say the same thing: The Cards will keep an eye on who is available, but in neither case are they definitely going to add someone.

At cornerback they still have A.J. Jefferson, Patrick Peterson and Richard Marshall to man the top three spots. At running back, they are still intrigued by Alfonso Smith (although he unfortunately is dealing with a hamstring problem right now, which kept him from running the ball against San Diego the other night).

There will be players who come available not this week but next weekend that can change the equation.

UPDATE: The Cardinals did add a cornerback Monday afternoon, signing Fred Bennett while waiving-injured LB Brandon Sharpe (hamstring). Bennett, a 2007 fourth-round pick of Houston, actually started 17 times in 40 games for the Texans from 2007-09. He spent time with San Diego and Cincinnati last season, and was just released by the Bengals this weekend. He has five career interceptions.

“We are always looking to get our team better,” Whisenhunt said. “It may be this week, it may be after this week, we will look and see. It’s got to be the right fit for us. You get a sense in training camp you have all these numbers that you don’t have in the regular season. We don’t have six corners or five corners or five running backs on the regular roster. We will look and see what’s available.”

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37 Responses to “An eye open, then adding a CB”

  1. By Paul H on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Kevin Kolb seems to coming along fairly well especially considering he’s only been here a month. He like’s to freelance more than I prefer but if he “makes plays” then I assume Whiz will give him a long rope. Is it just me but does Kevin remind me of a past Cardinal QB? No not Kurt, but Jake the Snake. Those unscripted tosses to Beanie are things Jake would try. Note to Kevin. Jake got booed a little when he would make a really bonehead play. Be ready for that.Watch what you do with your middle finger. Also with his helmet on, Kevin looks just like Jake. Same eyes and eyebrows and they are built similar. Check it out on the big video screens at the stadium when he’s breaking the huddle.

  2. By Wonderingwhy on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren,

    Given what happened to Ryan Williams, the injury to Beanie last year and the injuries to the backups already don’t you think they should push for a veteran RB? If we have no running game it will put a tremendous amount of pressure on Kolb to succeed through the air. Kolb is a great QB but he is not Kurt Warner. They need a RB that will make an impact right away if Beanie goes down.

  3. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Yes, players will become available, but they will have absolutely zero experience with this offense or defense. I can’t imagine any new additions after the fourth preseason game starting anytime soon as it is going to take time to get them up to speed, when the whole team isn’t even up to speed with the new defense. All that’s probably why Whiz keeps saying that they don’t feel the need to definitely go out and get some guys who didn’t make the cut with another team and have no clue about the systems the Cards run.

  4. By Joe on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Yeah hopefully chester taylor gets released by the bears. He would be a perfect.

  5. By Alberto Sordi on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Chester Taylor didn’t do a thing for the Bears last year and looks even worse this year. He should be a last option.

  6. By VoiceofReason on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    What is the love fest with Chester Taylor? He’s over 30 and ran for under 2 a carry last year. AND he’s still under contract. I actually like Mike Bell as an option better, but none jump out at me. We’ll see after tomorrow’s cuts.

    What about Andre Guroude? Any interest there, Darren?

  7. By Darren Urban on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Voice —

    RE: Gurode/Muhtadi

    I don’t believe Dean is on a team. As for Gurode, unless he could play another position, they like Sendlein.

  8. By joelz on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Jake? Jeez what a put down.
    Kurt? Of course he’s not him he’s Kevin Kolb
    I hope Kolb puts an end to the Warner comparisons, its getting old and meaningless. Sometimes i think fans feel Kurt Warner was the only one playing. Cards didnt win super bowl and they barely won the championship with Kurt, he gave fans a taste and thats it, the meal has yet to be served.

  9. By D on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    With the cap availabilty-they should add another corner and rb if these players can help…I am not sold on a. smith at rb and let’s face it, 2 of the 3 starting corners don’t have any nfl experience, so there should be available players to add for depth, plus if Adub ‘s injury gets worse in the panther game, since r. johnson doesn’t look ready, there will be another player to add

  10. By Rich on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    they like alphonso. the hyphen will get more snaps. they are right to wait and see – no panic. at corner, toler was going to get demoted for pp anywayso its really a loss in depth.

  11. By DontTakeLoses on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Tough game for Marshall. His struggles are obvious. Wonder if Coach Horton can protect him by scheme, as he may need to do with A-Dub? Thoughts?

  12. By Darren Urban on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Don’tTake —

    RE: Marshall

    I don’t know if they feel the need to “protect” him. But in this defense, CBs will be on an island often.

  13. By DW#1FAN on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    This just shows us how valuable time with Jon Lott is. now we feel the blow other teams have had to endure. This is an opportunity in disguise, a blessing in disguise even. All our injuries in the offseason and preseason ahve hurt, but at the same time I feel they will only make us deeper and better for the end of the year and next year. Now is the time to have these struggles so you slide into the playoffs more stable and with holes filled. Despite injury, our team is better now than we ever were last year.

    Darren, pass it along to someone that the new soda and beer cups are frikkin awesome!!!!!!

  14. By AndyStandsUp on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, with the team in my eyes to carry more OLs and TEs this season over last, another area will have to diminish.
    Even with injuries, (and the Wilson spot will be a large decision) do you think there will be fewer DBs on the team this season?

  15. By Darren Urban on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    RE: DBs

    I think you have to carry at least 9 DBs as usual. If you have one more TE, you might have one less RB. I expect 8 OL again.

  16. By Nate on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Any room left in the salary cap for Chris Johnson? 30,000,000 is a huge risk, yet its not my money to loose. Chris Johnson is one of my favorite players to watch, I would flip out if we could get him in red and white! Pay the man!

  17. By fightingbird on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren ,I wrote last week about my wife and me are going to fly to Arizona from N.C. to watch the Cards opening game against the Panthers a one in a life time trip for us and we would like to get to a practice or something that we can do to get close to the team autograph setion or something. We are Cardinal fans and I have been since I was seven and this will probably be the last time I will get to fly to AZ to watch a game so can you give me any info . We will fly into AZ 9-9-11 and leave on 9-13-11 .

  18. By Darren Urban on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    fightingbird —

    RE: Autographs

    Unfortunately, unless you can be near the field in the stands on Sunday, I don’t see an opening.

  19. By Peter in Canada on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    Joelz- You are right Kurt was not the only star on the team. No we did not win the Super Bowl and we did win a very close game against the Eagles. His contribution to the Cards, however was immense and I thoroughly enjoyed the time he was here. He should be a first ballot Hall of Famer and Kolb is nowhere near that level yet. I hope that he will eventually be a star because it will be nothing but good times for us if he does. Meanwhile to diminish Kurt’s contribution to the team is ridiculous.

  20. By sam thomas on Aug 29, 2011 | Reply

    has this year to me been more injuries across the league contribute to lockout or do you think its a normal training camp?

  21. By Darren Urban on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Sam —

    RE: Injuries

    Feels pretty normal to me. There are always a handful of season-ending injuries in the preseason. The Cards have been lucky enough to avoid them the last few years.

  22. By Blake on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply


    Do you know of any RBs out there that are looking likely to be cut that the Cards would be interested in?? With Marion Barber doing well in Chicago backing up Forte, would Chester Taylor be a good fit for the backfield?

  23. By Darren Urban on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Blake —

    RE: RBs

    I think they would look at Taylor as a 3rd RB. I don’t know who else will be out there.

  24. By dieselbomber on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    I agree with Nate about Chris Johnson. Get him and Pay him!!

    Two types of offensive threat will only help the team. It was great to see Team Rushing up over 160 yards. 2010 average was a mere 80 yards. Adding Johnson would push that to around 200 yards and take a lot of heat off of the Rookies and off of Kolb. It makes it more difficult for the opposition to prepare for you when you mount a dual-threat. One of those threats is going to break it open for you.

    So, I’m totally sold on the idea of going after and acquiring CJohnson. I love the passing game, but also feel that without strong rushing, you’re a sitting duck.

    While I’m at it, What about Rich Bartel, eh? I’d like to see Skelton do well, but Bartel has been rock solid. I think the Cards are good at QB … finally. The 2010 season was an injury-fest at QB. Hope everyone remains healthy behind Center in 2011.

  25. By Dylan Clarke on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren if you remember I was talking about the Cards and the 6 receivers they will keep and I was pretty surprised to see us let Komar go but hey looks like Stucky will make the team like you where talking about!

    But I saw that the Lions let Mike Bell go, Now don’t you think Bell sounds pretty pleasing at this point? Give me some feedback Darren

  26. By Darren Urban on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Dylan —

    RE: Mike Bell

    I think they will look at someone like Bell, but to say he’d be a target, I don’t know. I think they may wait for final cuts.

  27. By Jason on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Darren Sharper anyone? With Adubs injury do you think Sharper would be a good fit for us? I kind of doubt Adub makes it through the season.. I am not sold on Taylor at RB. He is old and will get cut for a reason.

  28. By Darren Urban on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Jason —

    RE: Sharper

    Sharper too is old and at the end. And he is a free safety. Wilson is a strong safety.

  29. By cardsalltheway on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Ken W. says…”It’s got to be the right fit for us”
    Whenever I hear this I wonder what it means? Does it still depend on who might sit next to who in the cafe/lunchroom ala Max Hall? Does Ken W. ask other teams who this/that player sat next to while eating?

  30. By clssylssy on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    Well…and I thought I was the only one noticing the kick in the gut the team was taking in losing Hightower and Rogers-Cromardie for the new talent, that had all the appeal of a shiny new toy but is already broken. The trouble with picking up players cut from other teams is that there was a reason they were cut and they don’t have a big window to learn Coach Whisenhunt’s scheme. Jake the Snake and Kurt Warner were the only QBs to help up win Division Titles so until Kevin Kolb at least gets us that far he doesn’t even qualify to carry their shoes. He is the media darling and what else would the spin doctors say after spending $63 million on him. Fitz had over 1000 yds last year with no help from DA, and there is a lot of other “support” talent on this team. Chris Johnson…hmmm…at first glance seems appealing for his skill but has all the “tude” of a TO, or others we have let move on because they weren’t a good fit. The team is looking pretty good and if we could stay healthy we could be a contender. Good luck John Lott, you have your work cut out! STAY HEALTHY GUYS AND GOOD LUCK! WE DO THIS TOGETHER!

  31. By cards62 on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    I of course like the rest of you are sorry for the 2 players hurt, but unfortunately it is a part of the game we love.

    Overall the team is in good shape and I am excited about our team for 2011. We are not a perfect team, but we have already played better football than I saw all of last year. I read where we still have $ 9.4 million in cap room for this year so we can still sign a few impact players if available.

    Do not kid yourselfs there will be some very good football players released by us and other teams. Some teams will bet on young guys over salaries of good players, but more will be young guys cut who can play the game, but its a numbers game. I hope we are active.

    Go Cards

  32. By Nick Pepe on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    @Ottis Anderson fan,
    I don’t think they would look to a potential pick-up as an early starter. That is not the need. They need depth, which given the proper fit could be developed over time. They will not be looking at anyone from this point on to be a starter.

    I know it was another town, but still the same franchise, please give props to my man Jim Hart. When I was a young man I had to wear #17 cause of him. And he was a true gentleman and professional.

    Nick Pepe
    lifetime member

  33. By Javi on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    darren what about rb will we get one and what about wr?

  34. By Nate on Aug 30, 2011 | Reply

    What about Chris Johnson should he come available? Lets pick up the phone and offer up a first rounder in 2012 and make a deal. Then Pay the guy and get one of my favorite players!

    All joking aside how is the salary cap looking right now? That would be a big factor in who we sign.


  35. By Darren Urban on Aug 31, 2011 | Reply

    Nate —

    RE: Cap

    Last I saw, the Cards still have about $9M in cap space. They are fine in that regard.

  36. By clssylssy on Aug 31, 2011 | Reply

    Nick…so sorry, my bad! Of course I didn’t mean to dis Jim Hart or any of the other greats who were before my time, but nonetheless deserving of our respect and gratitude for their contributions to the Cardinal legacy. I do wish the spin doctors would get off their bandwagon in touting Kevin Kolb as the greatest QB ever. He hasn’t had enough time yet to be anything but a work in progress. I am very impressed with his apparent desire to be a part of a winning Arizona Cardinals team and willingness to put in the work. In this day, that, in itself, is extraordinary.
    Cardsalltheway…what part of “it’s got to be the right fit don’t you understand”. It’s about a player personalities that have “chemistry” and are right with the goals, objectives and coaching style of the organization. FYI, this is not unique with the Cards but important to the smooth operation and success of any business.

  37. By harvey wright on Aug 31, 2011 | Reply

    Bennett is a decent cover corner but not great. He is a hard hitter and accurate one on one tackler. He get out muscled for the ball by even the smallest receivers.Maybe our new defensive back coaches can refine him some. He may not make the team but is worth looking at.

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