All-Access with Bruce Arians: Cardinals near final preseason game
TEMPE, 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; or in today’s case, practice as the team has broken camp and returned to its facility in Tempe.
“Alright, solid start to this week,” Arians said. “Had basically two different groups: guys that played a bunch the other day just did some conditioning and most of the young guys who are playing in this game got a lot of reps.”
How much was Deone Bucannon able to do?
“He went through all of individual (drills) and did OK.”
Got any better feel for him as far as when he might be ready?
“He’s right on schedule. We took him off PUP (physically unable to perform), did the walk-throughs last week and started doing some individual drills. Just see how he progresses each day. … He’s got to get in football shape real fast.”
What do you need to see from Chad Williams this week?
“Some consistency. He did a nice job getting open, understanding everything; just hold onto the ball. He had been improving every single day up until then—other than the fumble.”
From what you’ve seen out of Bucannon, any idea on if he’ll play Week 1?
“Oh god, we just saw him through individual drills today. I mean it’s way too early.”
Can John Brown be effective for you this season even if he’s not quite 100-percent?
“If that’s as close as it is, yeah. That was against their starters, so I think that kind of answers the question right there.”
How important is he to your offense?
“He’s huge because he had such a big year when he was healthy. He just stretches the defense plus he’s also a great run-after-the-catch guy. J.J. (Nelson) picked up some of that near the end of last year, and we missed it last year earlier when J.J. broke his thumb and missed most of early camp. You got to have those guys that can take the top off. ‘Smoke’ can also play in the slot. He can do a lot of things.”
What if you only have Brown for half or three-quarters of a year, can the offense still be as potent?
“Not when he’s not out there. It’ll be different, but hopefully we’ll have somebody that can do the same things.”
How do you think Aaron Dobson looked in his preseason debut?
“I thought he looked really, really good. He was finally healthy. He’s missed a month. He had a great spring and he looked very explosive. If Drew (Stanton) doesn’t slip on that long throw I think he’s behind him four or five yards.”
Has Chris Johnson showed you enough to make this roster?
“Yeah, it’s still a battle. It’s going to be a tough decision for that spot.”