ARIZONA CARDINALS

Cardinals OLBs Gardeck, Kennard use boxing to assist with pass rushing

Jul 24, 2022, 12:00 PM | Updated: 12:00 pm
Dennis Gardeck #45 of the Arizona Cardinals pressures the play of P.J. Walker #6 of the Carolina Pa...
Dennis Gardeck #45 of the Arizona Cardinals pressures the play of P.J. Walker #6 of the Carolina Panthers in the second quarter of the game at State Farm Stadium on November 14, 2021 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Outside linebacker Devon Kennard joined his Arizona Cardinals teammate Dennis Gardeck with a new training routine this offseason: boxing.

On Friday’s edition of Cardinals Flight Plan, Gardeck says he’s been boxing for four years, disclosing during a press conference earlier this offseason his earliest boxing video was from 2019.

He said it’s a way to get cardio while also forcing himself to think when he’s tired.

“It’s eyes, hands, hips and feet, which translates to football,” Gardeck told reporters in June. “And then cardio-wise, it’s a little bit better than just going out there and running gassers, where you can kind of just turn your mind off and go. That’s not football. Football is being able to read and react.”

Kennard echoed that sentiment on the show, and there is a clip of him saying, “There’s a two-minute drill right there,” after a set.

Gardeck and Kennard have trained together since the former entered the league, Kennard said.

The two said they push each other every offseason.

“We’re able to talk about each other’s game from a place where we’re both trying to get each other better” Gardeck said on the show. “I think it’s very important who you surround yourself with.”

Kennard is entering his ninth NFL season and third with the Cardinals, while Gardeck — fresh off signing a three-year contract this offseason — is in Year 5 with Arizona.

They are in a position group that lost franchise sacks leader Chandler Jones in free agency.

Defensive coordinator Vance Joseph said on Flight Plan he expects Gardeck to get back to his 2020 form, when the pass rusher had seven sacks.

Gardeck tore his ACL at the end of that season and missed the opening three games in 2021.

Joseph said Jones’ exit will open more chances for Gardeck on the edge.

Kennard, meanwhile, said he is relishing the chance to contribute more than he has as a Cardinal thus far.

“I’m very confident in my own ability, so I don’t mind grabbing a young guy and teaching him everything I know,” Kennard said. “But when we go out on the field, we’re still competing for the same job.

“My focus is being a star in my role.”

Gardeck, Kennard and Markus Golden are the three most experienced pass rushers on the team in Joseph’s system, while Arizona also has rookie Cameron Thomas and Myjai Sanders along with second-year player Victor Dimukeje.

Life Changer Loans

Arizona Cardinals

D.J. Humphries #74 of the Arizona Cardinals on the field during pregame warm-ups before the game ag...
Sam Graveline

Cardinals’ D.J. Humphries takes last spot in PFF’s 2022 top OT rankings

Fresh off an extension with the Cardinals, LT D.J. Humphries took the last spot in Pro Football Focus' top offensive tackle rankings.
21 hours ago
Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers runs with the ball against Byron Murphy Jr. #7 of the Arizon...
Sam Graveline

Cardinals rank No. 30 on Football Outsiders’ under-25 talent list

The Cardinals head into the 2022 season lacking talent under the age of 25, coming in at No. 30 in Scott Spratt's rankings.
21 hours ago
(L-R) Owner Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys talks with owner Michael Bidwell of the Arizona Cardi...
Arizona Sports

Sportico ranks Cardinals No. 28 on list of most valuable NFL teams

The Arizona Cardinals ranked No. 28 in Sportico's franchise valuations at $3.165 billion, an 18% increase from 2021.
3 days ago
Arizona Cardinals WR Rondale Moore warms up ahead of practice Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Tempe. (T...
Nikash Nath

Pro Football Focus: Rondale Moore is Cardinals’ most intriguing player

PFF's Ari Meirov went through all 32 NFL teams' rosters and selected one player from each team as their most "intriguing player."
2 days ago
Arizona Cardinals' Greg Dortch runs drills during the NFL football team's training camp at State Fa...
Tyler Drake

Cardinals notebook: Greg Dortch among Red & White practice standouts

Greg Dortch continues to impress over the course of training camp, with his most recent showing coming during the Red & White practice.
21 hours ago
Arizona Cardinals DL Kingsley Keke looks on during OTAs on Monday, June 6, 2022, in Tempe. (Tyler D...
Arizona Sports

Arizona Cardinals DT Kingsley Keke placed in COVID-19 protocols

Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Kingsley Keke has been placed in COVID-19 protocols, head coach Kliff Kingbury said at practice Saturday.
2 days ago
Cardinals OLBs Gardeck, Kennard use boxing to assist with pass rushing