Arizona Cardinals training camp: All-Access with Bruce Arians

Aug 13, 2015, 12:54 PM | Updated: 1:55 pm
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GLENDALE, Ariz. — Head coach Bruce Arians, now in his third 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.

First though, Arians updated the injury list of players who will not suit up in the first preseason game against Kansas City: Michael Floyd, Rob Crisp, Marion Grice, David Johnson, Jonte Green, Darryl Sharpton, Sean Weatherspoon, Shaq Riddick, Chris Clemons, Zack Wagenmann and Darren Woodard.

“Tired of hitting each other. Looking forward to another training camp practice today. This is not anything other than a training camp practice. Like I told our starters, I don’t see any need to rest your legs for playing 10 plays or 15 plays, so have a damn good practice.

“We need to have a good, full-speed, get-after-it practice today. We will stay in shells. We practiced extremely well two days in a row in that manner. I like that aspect of it. A lot of guys stayed off the ground, that’s always a good sign that we’re more athletic than we used to be when we had a lot of guys on the ground. Thought yesterday was another really, really solid day; both sides of the ball. I think our special teams are getting better. Looking forward to the challenge to play another team.”

How did Andre Ellington look in his first action of 11-on-11 in practice?

“Better. He just needs to get his stamina up and make sure we watch the fatigue level so he doesn’t re-injure it. He’s really close to being full-speed and expect him to play in the game.”

How important is the first preseason game in the evaluation process?

“We’ve got so many young guys to evaluate and we’re still playing to win the game. But, as I told them, they’re interviewing for us and for 31 other teams so put your best stuff out there on tape.”

Any players in particular you are interested in seeing play?

“About 20 of them. It’s hard to name. All those inside backers, a couple of tight ends, all the young receivers, that whole second and third defensive line, a couple of young corners — there’s so many battles going on that it would hard to just name one or two.”

What about the communication between the coaches on the sideline and up in the pressbox?

“Yeah, it’s a practice run for them also, especially defensively this year with a new voice on top and all the guys on the sidelines, him hearing them calling the game, them shutting up letting him call the game. I might click over more this team to see how much chatter is on that side of the ball just to help (defensive coordinator James Bettcher) out a little bit.

The addition of Coach Jen Welter to the staff, how has that gone?

“She’s been fantastic; about 100 times more than I thought it would be. It’s been great. Players have embraced her as a coach. They listen. She’s got really good insight. As they call her ‘Dr. J,’ there’s a really good rapport out there right now.”

Have you had a back-up offensive line that’s had this much experience?

“No, I don’t think I’ve ever had a back-up offensive line going into a preseason game this good. As Drew (Stanton) said, ‘I’ll go start with these guys and play anybody.’ That’s a really good feeling.”

Will that depth on the offensive line help you better evaluate Logan Thomas?

“Yeah, he should be playing with guys that know what the heck they’re doing. He still has to lead young guys, but he’s going to have a chance to play football with quality players.”

Is Dave Zastudil getting pushed at all by Drew Butler in camp?

“Yes, that’s a pretty even battle right now. Having seen them both for a season, it’s just who kicks it the best and the most consistent.”

Is there something specifically you’re looking for out of Carson Palmer in the game?

“Stay healthy. No, he’s chomping at the bit, obviously. Nothing special, just go out and play and play fast, which I’m sure he will.”

Can Glenn Carson be an NFL long-snapper?

“He’s getting close. I’d hate to nominate him right now, but he will get his opportunities in preseason.”

What do you think about Eric Berry playing for the Chiefs?

“Unbelievable. I’m so happy for him and I can’t wait to go out and grab him before the game and tell him all the best and good luck.”

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