Friday before the Raiders/Camp aftermath

Posted by Darren Urban on August 28, 2015 – 4:14 pm

It’s a special two-headed blog post, combining a “Friday before” with an “aftermath.” We’ll see if I can get out alive. Seriously, camp is over, and thank goodness for that. I know I have tired of hotel life. Even if we are just a short drive from home, home seems so far away in the middle of the month.

What is there to say about camp? The Cards had their injuries, although beyond losing starting nose tackle Corey Peters to his Achilles tear — which is a big deal, but not crippling given the defensive line depth — the Cards came out OK. We’ll see where Michael Floyd and Mike Iupati and Sean Weatherspoon are in a week as the Cards prep for the Saints on opening day.

Best players in camp? Hard to go anywhere but Carson Palmer. Tyrann Mathieu was very good. I thought Patrick Peterson played well. There has been a lot of praise doled out to inside linebacker Kevin Minter, which is a huge deal given Weatherspoon’s absence. Of course, with still two preseason games to go, there is still some time before the roster is shaped. The Cards — at 88 on the roster right now — have to be down to 75 by Tuesday at the latest (although I expect those cuts sooner) and then to 53 a week from Saturday. All for a season where much is expected of the team.

“For us to reach where we want to go, we can’t be potential,” Bruce Arians said. “We have to be damn good.”

— I have a hunch running back Chris Johnson plays in Oakland. He practiced Friday, but he didn’t do a lot beyond individual drills, mostly running off by himself to keep loose. But Arians said he wants to be on the field, and while Johnson said he wasn’t sure if he’ll be ready, I just have a gut feeling he’ll get a little time. If not, it’ll be the Denver game.

— Let’s hope the MRI needed for rookie Xavier Williams on his left elbow isn’t a big deal. He got hurt at the end of practice Friday.

— Arians started calling CB Jerraud Powers “Milkman” because he wanted to needle Powers for needing so many days off with his hamstring injury. (Powers was milking the injury — get it?) Then Powers came back to practice Friday and made a couple of interceptions. “The Milkman delivered today.”

— The players aren’t the only ones who likes finally breaking camp to be able to sleep in their own bed. Arians does too.

“My liver likes a break too,” Arians deadpanned.

— Earl Watford will get second-team work at right tackle in Oakland Sunday. How much backup quarterback Drew Stanton will play will depend on how much Carson Palmer ultimately plays. In this game, Phillip Sims will get in the game first as third QB with Logan Thomas finishing up.

— Arians likes the depth that’s been created with the young inside linebackers, but I’d think the spotlight will still be bright on those guys Sunday (although it’ll be brighter in the preseason finale.) I’m interested to see how D.J. Humphries looks at left tackle, how DT Rodney Gunter looks in extended time and whether the Cardinals can put together a couple of sacks with their first-unit defense. Josh Mauro was getting a lot of work as an edge guy in first-unit sub-packages this week.

In a week, the preseason will be over, and it’ll be time to talk regular season. Finally.




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25 Responses to “Friday before the Raiders/Camp aftermath”

  1. By Steve on Aug 28, 2015 | Reply

    Darren: Great job covering camp. I see some early similarities of J.J Nelson who reminds me a little of DeSean Jackson when he came out of college, same wiry athletic build, both around 5’10” 170 and both with the quickness and speed to take the top off a defense real fast. Do you agree with the comparison that Nelson and Jackson are almost carbon copies? (except the off the field issues).

  2. By Darren Urban on Aug 28, 2015 | Reply

    Steve —

    RE: Nelson/Jackson

    I can see some similarities, but Jackson was a first-round pick with a much more accomplished college resume.

  3. By clssylssy on Aug 28, 2015 | Reply

    Doesn’t sound like Chris Johnson will be going into this game prepared and I have to wonder how much of the play book he’s learned or if he plans to “wing it”? I get the feeling that he is riding a lot on ancient history and his CJ2K moniker which could prove embarrassing for him with the talent around him…hope I’m wrong.
    Sounds like Arians has his team pretty much set in his mind, so there won’t be a need for most of the guys to prove anything by taking unnecessary risks. This is the time to start cleaning up the little stupid mistakes that cost us in penalties and begin playing smart. The Raiders are much improved and out to prove they are bad boys so I am a little nervous about injuries and hope the officiating is better than it was last week! Good luck Cards, play smart and prevail!

  4. By All Day on Aug 28, 2015 | Reply

    Happy to see that Powers practiced today. Do wish Spoon would’ve played but it is what it is. Gonna be tough to decide who we keep at WR I know Golden has played well but hard to see him beating out JJ Nelson at the 5th spot and I don’t think we keep 6. All in all excited to see what we accomplish this year.

  5. By the way, Dr. G. on Aug 28, 2015 | Reply

    We can call the next 7days “”sad sack week”” in that there are 35 men from which to pick about 5 roster spots. 10 more can make the PS if no one else is picked up…but that will likely happen. Keim and BA will see someone they will like. I heard we traded Fitz ++ for Aaron Rodgers….fantastic!

    And then I woke up..!

    Now it is on to the real thing soon….be well, Cards Fans…a good season looms!! We have good reasons to be optimistic…

  6. By Dynosoar on Aug 28, 2015 | Reply

    Jim Koch,

    I like the way you present your thoughts. I like Cariel Brooks as well, but since he’s on an injured list, I left him off my 53.

    It’ll be good to see what Gresham can do in a Cardinals uniform.

  7. By don on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    VERY interested to see how our O-line does against that raiders D-line
    If Palmer is clean at halftime , I’ll be a happy man 🙂
    first extended playing time for Gunter , our first glimpse of Riddick I hope .
    M. Golden should see plenty of work . hope to see some flashes from Fua.
    wish we knew more about Williams . so far . it’s pretty unbelievable , that we could have so many rookies make this already talented team .
    looks like they’re going to have a large role this year.
    I’m also going to be watching Stanton closely . not thrilled with his performance so far . while i have been encouraged by Thomas , and Sims . they both certainly look like they could be decent QB’s
    can’t imagine seeing CJ playing . without actually having some carries in practice
    want to see if AE , DJ can pick up a blitz . and show a drastically improved run game ! ! those guys should have 1,600 yards combined receiving . and rushing this year . also looks to me , like those final roster spots are going to guys who can cover punts , kickoffs… hope Shipley , Grice , K Williams find spots on other teams . they certainly have skills
    would be really nice to see something from our TE’s this week . excited to see Gresham contribute in the passing game , a shame Niklas is having such a crap time . when i google his name . injury comes up 🙁
    GO CARDS ! ! ! !! !

  8. By ray on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Maybe its just me but i’m really liking jaxon Shipley

  9. By William Barry on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    I saw Rodney Gunter play and he shows lots of promise…

    Interesting to see who BA keeps at punter…Drew Butler has not looked too bad…not sure about Zasty????

    Markus Golden looked impressive too.

    RB from round 3 draft pick, Johnson, looked impressive running last week.

    Would like to see Weatherspoon and Gresham get on the field, too.

  10. By Scott H on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Again, we KNOW Palmer is ready. Don’t need to see much more of him from here on out. I say let him go until the Cards first team offense puts a score on the board, then hand him a baseball cap for the night. At most, give him the first quarter.

    Give Stanton the rest of the time you want to keep starters in the game. Regardless of how he looks or what people think, he is the back-up QB, period. Nothing we need to find out here. Doesn’t seem to be any chance of Thomas or Simms being any more than the 3rd QB this year, so…give them as much time as they need in these last 2 games to help you figure that out.

  11. By clssylssy on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Heard a rumor that the Redskins were looking at Gresham, that Gruden liked him from his days with the Bengals(despite the injuries would provide a veteran anchor in their mess of a locker room) and since he hasn’t done anything to date for us, could see Keim dealing him, as well as possibly Michael Floyd who was rumored to be trade bait before he injured his hand, which will make it even that more difficult to hang on to the ball, a problem last year. I would hate to see Floyd traded because we need somebody besides Larry with size and the ability to block for CP. I was very impressed with Golden’s toughness and hope they can find a place for him on the 53.
    Last season we came very close to being undefeated at home and I hope we can surpass that this year but wil; be content to take it one game at a time starting with a good thumping of a much improve Saints team, who are going to be looking for big time payback for the loss they suffered the last time they played at UofP Stadium. Gonna be a tough season and with much work to do, we need everybody healthy. Time to cut bait and wear out the waiver wire!

  12. By Darren Urban on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Clssy —

    RE: Gresham

    With Niklas injury, Gresham isn’t going anywhere.

  13. By Scott H on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Darren –

    RE: Gresham isn’t going anywhere

    Well, it sure would be nice if he went onto the field to play ( in a game ) at some point.

  14. By Don on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Glad to see they’re giving Sims a chance to step up as the 3rd QB. I am hope full that he will do well. I think he has a lot of potential. I honestly think he has more going for him than Thomas. we will see.

  15. By Jim Koch on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    I can see the comparison Steve is making between DJax and Nelson. Pretty similar except that Nelson is actually SMALLER! He really needs to put some weight on. And hopefully Nelson isn’t the idiot Desean is. That’s pretty much the reason Chip Kelly just released him the guy and got nothing in return, he really needs to grow up.

  16. By Jim Koch on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    To Darren; Have to correct you on Desean Jackson. He actually dropped to the 2nd rd because he was and still is a knucklehead.

  17. By cards62 on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Really looking forward to Sunday Nights Game. I will key on watching our o line, David Johnson, and our front 7 on defense.
    Darren please give us an update on X. Williams as soon as you know something.
    Carson must stay healthy for us to have a chance this year, and with Carson and some injury luck I think we have a very good chance this year. Packers and Seahawks will be tough again this year and we play them both at the end of the year so I am already ready for another great year of football. Man I am so fired up for our Cardinals so guys lets play hard and be careful out there.

    Georgie Girl from your earlier post I hope you are wrong about our tight end Troy N. actually being Rob H. but it was a very funny observation and so far 100% correct.

    Go Cards

  18. By Jim Koch on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    To Dynosoar; Thanks alot for the compliment. Wasn’t aware that Brooks is on the injury list. Your 53 is just about the same as mine except for the couple spots I pointed out. Intelligent minds think alike my man! Look forward to your posts throughout the season

  19. By Jim Koch on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    To Dynosoar; Darren Urban informed me that Gresham has practiced and is playing Sunday. Great news. His signing had kinda gone under the radar I guess because of his injury. Also can’t wait to see him in Cardinal red. He’s been a solid, consistent contributor throughout his career and I like that he had Carson throwing to him during his rookie year. We could use a solid TE. Niklas is getting on my nerves quickly and Momah is inconsistent. I do like Fells but more as a backup. Also hoping CJ2K plays, not sure about your thoughts on him. GO CARDS!

  20. By Jim Koch on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    I also agree that Gresham should go nowhere. You only trade a player if you have capable guys ready to step in and we don’t. Niklas appears to be a bust and at the least not ever gonna be dependable health wise. Soft is the word I’m looking for. Momah looks inconsistent. Christian was the LAST player taken in the draft and has been invisible. And Fells while decent just doesn’t have the resume of Gresham. This is not the time to be trading away good players.

  21. By Dynosoar on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Jim Koch,

    I just looked at the injury list again (bottom of roster page) and I was mistaken. Brooks is NOT on the injured list. I missed that one.

    Now that may change my 53, I’ll have to see how he plays Sunday.

  22. By Dynosoar on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Scott H.,

    RE: your replay to “RE: Gresham isn’t going anywhere”

    I read your reply as he isn’t going anywhere, not even onto the field. I was laughing. And still am.

    Hopefully we all get to see him play against the Raiders. It sounds like we will.

  23. By Dynosoar on Aug 29, 2015 | Reply

    Lastly, as much as I like our red uniforms, I think our white unis on the field against the Raiders black and silver is a better combination than our reds and their whites.

    I can’t wait! Go Cardinals!

    No injuries this game and beyond.

  24. By Jim Koch on Aug 30, 2015 | Reply

    To Dynosoar; Yea man, looked into that after and saw that he was healthy. No biggie. Out of all the young CBs he has shown me the most. Wouldn’t mind him getting a shot at the 4th spot as long as his good play continues in these last 2 games. Would still like Keim keeping an eye on the waiver wire as you can never have enough good corners. Maybe even a trade using some of our depth, maybe from the D line.

  25. By Scott H on Aug 30, 2015 | Reply

    Dynosaur –

    But I really DO want to see Gresham on the field! Just wanted to make that clear.

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