Arizona Cardinals training camp: All-Access with Bruce Arians, Aug. 22

Aug 22, 2017, 2:04 PM
(AP Photo)...
(AP Photo)
(AP Photo)

GLENDALE, Ariz. – Head coach Bruce Arians, now in his fifth year with the Arizona Cardinals, meets the media each day during training camp.

Here, in this space, we’ll highlight many of the key topics and personnel conversations he has with reporters following the morning walk-through.

“Ok, injuries from yesterday: (Mike) Iupati has got a little triceps thing that will be a few days; (Philip) Wheeler will be back practicing today; Rudy Ford has got the same illness—we had a little digestive thing going on yesterday. Those guys will all practice today, so we got everybody back other than Mike.

“Really good practice. It was easy because it was a gameplan practice and you would expect those to go very smoothly and it did.”

Is Iupati out for this game against the Falcons?

“We don’t know yet.”

How has gameplanning with Carson Palmer evolved over the years?

“He knows it, I know it so it’s just a matter of matching it up versus their players and what they do defensively. We’ll talk about certain things as we install, why we’ve got them in the gameplan, but the narrative is usually later in the week.”

What have you been able to see with safety Ironhead Gallon?

“It’s tough as hell playing on that leg. I know he hates to have that brace on. He’s shown a lot of really good things. He’s not able to run like I know he can to play on special teams and show what he’s got, but he’s been very impressive.”

How much is it going to help Deone Bucannon to be able to go through walk-throughs now?

“Oh, it’s great just to be apart of it. To be able to walk-through, get his eyes going, get his keys. From watching film and standing behind you don’t get that, that view of where he needs to be. He’s nowhere near ready but it’s a good beginning.”

What did you see from Kerwynn Williams to think he would be good at returning punts?

“He caught them all last year every day and got better and better at it and sure-handed at it. It was a thought late last year. Then once we got T.J. (Logan) we saw he could do it. They were both back there every day kind of looking like the same guy. One is just a little bit faster than the other. It was refreshing to see two guys back there being able to handle punts that are normally kickoff guys.”

With punt returners can you get a sense of whether they’re going to have that fearlessness or do you need to see it?

“You need to see it. Like that punt that was dropped the other night. He was looking dead in to our guy’s eyes and not the ball. He was not about to lay him out, so I still disagree with that call.”

What are your thoughts on the NFC West and the new coaches joining the division?

“A lot of improvement. You’ve seen a lot of improvement in both L.A. and ‘Frisco. Seattle is Seattle. They continue to get better. Russell (Wilson) looks like he’s playing lights out so far in the preseason. I think both L.A. and San Fran are much better teams. San Fran especially, I think defensively their personnel is going to matchup pretty good.”

Is Seattle any different with maybe their running backs?

“(Thomas) Rawls and (Eddie) Lacy, they’re not going to change what they do.”

How do you feel when you see young coaches get head jobs as opposed to perhaps more seasoned coaches?

“Good for them, good for them. You’re happy for anybody to get one. There are a lot of very established coaches that don’t get a chance versus some young guys but sometimes you got the right connections.”

You’d like to hold joint practices but how difficult is that to schedule when you don’t know your preseason opponents? 

“It’s kind of one of those things, is it going to be here, is it going to be there, where’s it going to be. This week would be the week to do it. We’d have to go all the way to Atlanta to do it. Although their facility might’ve worked, but I didn’t want to have a joint practice with five preseason games. It was just going to be too much.”

Do you have to matchup philosophically with the other coach?

“Oh, that’s a big part of it, too, yeah. We had a great deal over in San Diego last year. Jack (Del Rio) and I have talked about it with the Raiders. We should never have a problem doing it, we just haven’t hooked up.”

If Tyrann Mathieu plays all 16 games, do you think it’s realistic he can lead the league in interceptions?

“He should have a chance because he’s going to be in position to get his hands on a lot of balls. He blitzes a lot which takes away some of them.”

How does Patrick Peterson get a chance for more picks?

“He won’t. When they do throw that one bad ball your way, catch it.”

What goes into Mathieu’s ball-hawking ability?

“He’s got great hands. He was a great little running back when he was young and he’s just got ball skills. A lot of guys are DBs because they couldn’t play wide receiver because they can’t catch. He’s not one of those guys. He’s always had really good instincts with the ball.”

Could he have been a better running back?

“Not at that size. He would’ve been a heck of a running back in college. He wouldn’t be one up here, not the way he was dancing around the other night.”

He almost feels like an addition to your team considering what he went through last year?

“Yeah. I mean it’s not the same player. You’d have to go back two years. It’s nice to watch it in practice.”

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