Impressing the boss and many B.A. notes

Posted by Darren Urban on August 4, 2014 – 12:25 pm

When the pads go on and the tackling starts, players can make an impact. Two young guys who did that during the Fan Fest work were tight end Darren Fells and undrafted rookie defensive tackle Bruce Gaston. Arians mentioned both by name Monday as having caught his eye Saturday, and there is nothing better than having your coach call you out in a good way during a press conference. That’s twice for Fells in a week, too. And as you know, three times is the charm.

(Actually, it will be really interesting to see what happens with Fells and the other tight ends. The Cardinals aren’t keeping five. Fells could go back to practice squad, but would he clear waivers? Would the Cardinals look at a trade? A lot of camp to go so maybe Fells’ star fades, but it’s an intriguing situation.”

Arians also mentioned Robert Hughes and Jonathan Dwyer, and again, those two look like the natural backs to join Andre Ellington and Stepfan Taylor on the 53 in early September.

Gaston also creates a dilemma if he indeed stays in contention for the roster. “He was blowing up some blockers and made a name for himself in that scrimmage.” Figure the Cardinals will keep six defensive linemen. Dockett, Campbell, Dan Williams and the two rookies Martin and Stinson seem like locks. Alameda Ta’amu might be on PUP, but what about Frostee Rucker, who also seems like a lock? Would the Cardinals keep seven defensive linemen?

— One of the reasons left guard Jonathan Cooper has struggled is going against defensive end Calais Campbell, who has played at a Pro Bowl level the last couple of years.

“Coop is getting there. He’s still a rookie,” Campbell said. “I don’t feel bad beating him. I mean I kind of do a little bit but I know I have to go hard against him so he can be football-ready because the first game he’ll have to step up and play big for us.

“Me and Coop are great friends. You don’t want to make him look bad in theory. But it is best for the team for me to go strong, and get him game-ready. We’ve had some good battles.”

Arians said Cooper responded well Saturday to his “disappointed” comments.

— WR John Brown (hamstring) will miss practice again today.

— Arians said he expects everyone to play Saturday against Houston, barring injury. He does hope Brown is back and playing. Starters will go about 15 plays.

— Arians update on the return of absent linebacker John Abraham. “I would hope next week,” he said. Added that with Abraham’s experience, missing a couple weeks of camp was not a big deal.

— Logan Thomas will be the third QB against Houston and play most of the fourth quarter. Ryan Lindley will get that chance the following game in Minnesota.

— Reminder that today’s practice is closed to the public. That gives Arians a chance to see how his team responds. There were an announced 23,000 at the Fan Fest scrimmage Saturday, which provided energy as a backdrop to what Arians called the best practice of camp. “It should be with 20-some thousand people,” Arians said. “It should get the juice flowing. Look forward to what it will be with nobody in there. It’s got to be the same kind.”



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15 Responses to “Impressing the boss and many B.A. notes”

  1. By John The Draft Guy on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    I just can’t help but notice that Ta’amu and Williams contracts end after 2014 and Dockett has that 10 million dollar contract looming in 2015. Those factors have to come into play when looking at the Dline.

    What I saw out of Gaston was a guy quick off the line, powerful and played on the other side of the line of scrimmage.

    OK, It was one drill, so we will see. But if a guy can be consistent and play at that level through out camp, it would be hard not to find him a roster spot.

  2. By Mark in Chandler on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    Darren, does the 6 week PUP count against the 53?

  3. By Darren Urban on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    Mark in Chandler —

    RE: PUP

    If you are on the PUP, no, you do not count. It’s why you’d use the PUP in the first place.

  4. By D on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    If BA is true to his word on blocking first for his TE responsibilities and if Fells plays well in a couple of preseason games, I don’t have a problem keeping him and releasing Housler. I doubt anyone would trade for Rob, although I would float it by the Texans GM this weekend because they don’t have much at the TE spot.
    Rob is basically a “beefed up” WR who actually has had some drops the last few years so we probably have seen enough to know he really isn’t a TE BA likes to have on the roster.

    Maybe you could sneak Gaston onto the practice squad, would have a hard time trusting him over Frostee during “live” games during the season..

  5. By Andy Kw on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    I knew Bruce Gaston would surprise the team. I said in an older post that Bruce Gaston was a pretty darn good undrafted DT and that he has a good chance on even making the team as depth.

  6. By John The Draft Guy on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    Going back to the tape on the last blog, I have to say at first, it would seem that Watford had the edge. But the playcalling played into Watfords strength and maybe not Coopers.

    OK. Give it perspective, it is only 3 or so plays for each guy on film. But here is what I saw.

    Cooper is over powered as his guy makes the tackle to stop the TD. On the next snap, Coop is to do a combo block (you double team then slide the guy to the center and you get to the second level) He should have read his double team as the center did not have control and he allowed him to be in on the tackle as he slid to the next level. At the next level, he wiffs on Minter, who also gets in on the tackle.

    Watford (#78) comes in and is asked to do a reach block. These can be tough around the goal line, but he was able to cut the guy in the “a” gap and Dwyer ran it in on the outside. The next play, Watford pulls to the right side and gets a piece of both Demans and #56. He got more Demans but enough of 56 that the RB easily scored. He then was asked to reach block again, in which he did a good job.

    Interesting thing was, with Cooper in, they tried to run behind him. With Watford in, they ran to the other side.

    Just one man’s observations.

  7. By br in nc on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    Hastings out of Purdue may be one of those UDFA gems that all teams are looking for, hard to get a read on him though ( I’m a B10 Guy, GO ILLINI! so I watch quite abit of B10 football) Hastings never really stood out for Purdue, but what he did do was play in every game from true freshman on, starting most! Purdue was 1-11 last year so nobody really stood out for them, he runs sub 5.0 in the 40 and he did 34-35 reps on the bench I believe I saw somewhere, he did not go to the combine, put had a pretty good pro day at Purdue, he was all over the place as far as draft status anywhere from 4th to 7th, which 7th round seemed to be the majority of “experts” placements, but quite a few had him working out best as a DT in a 4-3 , not a lot of mention about possibility of playing NT in 3-4 (maybe the so called experts missed something???) One thing that stood out to me was the number of comments about him excelling when he had 2 pro prospects playing around him his first couple of years, may work out great for the Cards with DD AND CC on the line with him, with the NT injuries and contracts expiring after this year, maybe we can get him through to the practice sqaid, if he doesn’t make the final 53 man roster this year. If nothing else he sounds very intriguing.

    As for Fells and this TE group, as I posted the other day, I think Housler will be the odd man out, he may be dangled as trade bait, and Fells makes the final cut for his blocking skills, (and you never know maybe he can develop into a pass catching TE as well) to be perfectly honest, I have not seen much or read much on Fells and his pass catching ability, anyone have any insight, I would love to know more about his game.
    And finally, as hard as it is to root for RB Robert Hughes (he spurned my beloved Illini out of High School when Notre Dame came in at the last minute and stole him away!) But if he has been that impressive and can give us the hard nosed between the tackles running game we severely lack, and IMHO have lacked for a few years now, then I will root like there is no tomorrow, all is forgiven Mr Hughes, good luck, and here’s hoping you have a ridiculous (in a positive good way) season as a Cardinal.

  8. By br in nc on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    How the h#$$ does auto correct get Hastings out of Gaston!!!

    First line should read GASTON (as in Bruce Gaston DT out of Purdue)
    Sorry, thought I had this auto-correct figured out!!

  9. By 'ZonaFan on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    We hardly used to have 23k at the Cardinals home games just 10 years ago, now there’s that many people showing up to watch a PRACTICE!!! That is awesome!!!! Let’s pack the nest this year!!! Rise Up Red Sea!!!!

  10. By Scott H on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    I have liked the Jonathan Dwyer pick up from the day they got him. I think this kid is gonna help out this year.

  11. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Aug 4, 2014 | Reply

    The Packers didn’t even have a scrimmage during their annual, “Family Night,” last Friday but rather a regular practice — and they sold out Lambeau Field. 70,000 people to watch a scrimmage is insane, but that’s Green Bay.

  12. By br in nc on Aug 6, 2014 | Reply

    That is 70,000 partial owners in GB case

  13. By cards4sb on Aug 5, 2014 | Reply

    Ottis Anderson Fan-

    I Live in Northern Illinois and not far from the Wisconsin border. They actually televise the scrimmage in Wisconsin.

    Go CARDS!!!!!

  14. By shannon robinson on Aug 5, 2014 | Reply

    If you ask Pittsburgh fans about Jonathon Dwyer, they’ll yell back “The Mini Bus!”

  15. By BigAl on Aug 10, 2014 | Reply

    By Ottis Anderson Fan & By cards4sb
    I love Wisconsin…I grew up in Chicago! And every summer we would go to the family Cabins (shared ownership w/aunts/uncles, cousins) on the Wisconsin
    River by the Dells…man it was awesome! That is where football was driven into me & I loved it! Packers fans/Bears fans all in the family mix! Then you add Beer,
    Brats, Sauer Kraut, Cheese, Hot Dogs/Hamburgers etc…What could beat that? Oh yeah, we swam & fished in the river also! I have always believed this is where Tailgating originated! It is also the Heart of the NFL!

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