Jefferson signs, McDonald released

Posted by Darren Urban on October 26, 2010 – 1:29 pm

The Cardinals made a roster move Tuesday by swapping cornerbacks: rookie A.J. Jefferson was promoted from the practice squad while Brandon McDonald — who was brought in off waivers after the Browns cut him at the end of training camp — was released. Jefferson has always intrigued the Cards with his athletic ability, and this way, he can’t be signed away from the practice squad by another team.


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Ware, Iwebema sit

Posted by Darren Urban on October 10, 2010 – 11:36 am

The Cardinals’ inactives list is out, and safety Matt Ware (ankle) and defensive end Kenny Iwebema (knee) are both out today. That means the three nose tackles are all active — Bryan Robinson, Gabe Watson and Dan Williams — with Robinson’s ability to play defensive end as well. Cornerback Tru McBride is inactive for the first time too, benched for newcomer Brandon McDonald. The rest of the list:

  • WR Steve Breaston (knee)
  • WR Early Doucet (sports hernia)
  • QB John Skelton
  • C Ben Claxton
  • LB Alex Hall

Among the Saints’ inactives are defensive starters CB Tracy Porter and DE Will Smith and RBs Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas.


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Dan Williams sits

Posted by Darren Urban on October 3, 2010 – 11:45 am

As expected, rookie nose tackle Dan Williams is inactive today because he is overweight. Gabe Watson will take his place in the rotation backing up starter Bryan Robinson. The rest of the inactives contain no surprises:

  • WR Steve Breaston (knee)
  • WR Early Doucet (sports hernia)
  • QB John Skelton
  • S Hamza Abdullah
  • CB Brandon McDonald
  • C Ben Claxton
  • LB Alex Hall

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Watson still inactive

Posted by Darren Urban on September 26, 2010 – 11:48 am

Nose tackle Gabe Watson remains on the inactive list this week for the Raiders game. RB Beanie Wells is playing, as is WR Steve Breaston. The rest of the inactive list:

  • QB John Skelton
  • CB A.J. Jefferson
  • S Hamza Abdullah
  • CB Brandon McDonald
  • C Ben Claxton
  • WR Early Doucet (hernia surgery)
  • LB Alex Hall
  • NT Gabe Watson

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Beanie, Watson inactive again

Posted by Darren Urban on September 19, 2010 – 8:29 am

It wasn’t even close today for RB Beanie Wells. The first time he emerged from the locker room, he was in sweatpants, meaning his bad knee probably didn’t respond well this weekend. So Wells is inactive, and the Cards’ running game falls on Tim Hightower, Jason Wright and LaRod Stephens-Howling again.

The rest of the inactive list looks a lot like last week, including nose tackle Gabe Watson. The others sitting today:

  • QB John Skelton
  • CB A.J. Jefferson
  • S Hamza Abdullah (hamstring)
  • CB Brandon McDonald
  • C Ben Claxton
  • WR Early Doucet (hernia surgery)

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Beanie, Watson inactive

Posted by Darren Urban on September 12, 2010 – 11:44 am

RB Beanie Wells (knee) is indeed inactive today. No surprise. Slightly a surprise is NT Gabe Watson, who is the odd man out on the defensive line — and it means rookie Dan Williams has moved ahead of Watson on the depth chart behind starter Bryan Robinson. WR Andre Roberts is also sitting, so fellow rookie WR Max Komar was the choice to be active and probably return punts. The rest of the men sitting out today:

  • QB John Skelton
  • CB A.J. Jefferson
  • CB Brandon McDonald
  • LB Cyril Obiozor
  • C Ben Claxton

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The roster and other thoughts

Posted by Darren Urban on September 7, 2010 – 4:01 pm

Veteran linebacker Clark Haggans came off the field Monday exhausted. It was pretty hot and humid, and given the dearth of linebackers — the Cards that day had just three outside ‘backers, since newcomer Cyril Obiozor had yet to arrive  and practice squaders Pago Togafau and Curtis Gatewood weren’t there yet either — the 33-year-old Haggans was basically taking every rep. No one on the team is in better shape than Haggans, but he still joked that “I was looking for rookies to take my place and he’s out there next to me,” referring to Daryl Washington.

By the time the team was running gassers at the end of the workout, “I was seeing heat monkeys,” Haggans said.

That’ll change by Wednesday’s practice (which, because of the temperatures breaking a bit, will be back at the Cards’ Tempe facility, as will Thursday’s, instead of a planned visit to ASU’s Dickey Dome). Obiozor, Gatewood and Togafau are in place to take some snaps. Still, now that the Cards have a roster in place — at least for week one — it is an interesting breakdown.

The Cards are clearly still looking to find the right combination in the secondary, which is why they have kept six cornerbacks right now. A.J. Jefferson (pictured below) has upside — I doubt he’ll be active on game days at first — and they aren’t sure yet what they have in Brandon McDonald, the newcomer from Cleveland. I am also guessing there will be a lot of nickel and dime looks, like strong safety Adrian Wilson playing in/near the box. That’s one way to not worry about needing too many linebackers.

Still, the Cards only have seven LBs on the active roster and one — Obiozor — has to show he fits.

— Interested to see what the Cards do with their seven defensive linemen, although since a guy like Gabe Watson actually play more special teams than most nose tackles, they may just make all seven active on game days.

— WR Andre Roberts is still listed as the No. 1 punt returner, but he is going to have to show something coming back from his shoulder injury (he said Tuesday he is healed) to have that job out of the gate. Is Max Komar active in the first game? Do the Cards stick Steve Breaston back there until Roberts is ready?

I was wrong. Washington is starting by opening day. I was right. Tim Hightower is starting opening day.

— I don’t know much about fullback Jerome Johnson, but they feel comfortable enough that he is the only FB on the roster. Wonder how that will work, or if the Cards use more two-tight end stuff in St. Louis.

— Notice Jorrick Calvin actually made the Eagles’ roster. I don’t think he was going to make it here. Now that Marshay Green is back on the practice squad (in case you missed it, Green and Togafau rounded out the eight-man reserve group), the Cards still have the young untested group in the secondary as they search for one or two to develop.

— Four undrafted guys — QB Max Hall, WR Stephen Williams, Komar and Jefferson — made the roster. Green made the practice squad. Not a bad undrafted haul, even if only a couple pan out (and it’s hard to believe Williams, at least, isn’t well on his way).


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Filling out the practice squad (and ice cream)

Posted by Darren Urban on September 6, 2010 – 3:05 pm

The Cardinals have put together a practice squad. Three newcomers are joining G Tom Pestock, T Herman Johnson and WR Isaiah Williams. RB Ian Johnson, cut by the Vikings, is best known for being the Boise State hero in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl who ended up proposing to his now-wife at University of Phoenix Stadium after the game. The Cards are also adding WR Tim Brown — no, not that one — who was cut by the Giants (and who played for receivers coach John McNulty when both were at Rutgers) and LB Curtis Gatewood, cut by the Redskins. Gatewood has bounced around with the Lions, Chiefs, Eagles and Steelers as well as an inside ‘backer. The Cardinals still have two spots to fill, although that is expected to happen sooner rather than later.

Oh, and it’s now official the Cards brought in the three waiver claim players: FB Jerome Johnson, LB Cyril Obiozor and CB Brandon McDonald.

P.S. Adrian Wilson and his foundation are hosting an ice cream social on tomorrow (Tuesday) from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Cold Stone Creamery headquarters in Scottsdale. (9311 E. Via De Ventura). Stop by and help A-Dub help the less fortunate. For more info: http://www.adrianwilsonfoundation.org/


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Nothing official, but Cards making moves

Posted by Darren Urban on September 5, 2010 – 7:58 pm

The Cardinals haven’t been releasing any info officially today, but as the NFL churns after final cuts, the Cards have apparently done a couple of things, like cut CB Marshay Green, LB Pago Togafau and FB Reagan Maui’a and claim three players who were released: former Giants FB/LB Jerome Johnson, former Browns CB Brandon McDonald, and former Packers LB Cyril Obiozor.

Excellent work, Sando.

It looks like Johnson was a college linebacker who the Rams (last year) and the Giants converted to fullback. It will be interesting to see if that’s where the Cards want to go with veteran free agent fullback Tony Richardson (cut by Jets) out there and also fullback Owen Schmitt (cut by Seahawks). I could see them thinking about putting a claim in on Schmitt. McDonald had eight interceptions the past three seasons — which included 27 starts — and is the veteran cornerback the Cards were long expected to grab about this time. Obiozor was an undrafted guy last year who went from college defensive end to 3-4 linebacker on the Green Bay practice squad. He is a work in progress.

I am surprised about Green, if for no other reason, I thought he was ahead of fellow undrafted CB A.J. Jefferson, who remains on the team. Of course, Green is sub-5-foot-10 and Jefferson is 6-foot, and you always wonder if that impacts. I could see Green coming back to the practice squad.


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