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Notes from the Nest: Offense off-kilter after Cardinals’ day off

Running back Andre Ellington lies on the ground as a pass falls incomplete during training camp Aug. 4. (Photo by Adam Green/Arizona Sports)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Cardinals had their first off day this training camp on Wednesday, and when they got back Thursday it appeared they were just a bit off-kilter.

Of course, that may have had something to do with the fact that the team was down many a receiver. Both J.J. Nelson and John Brown remained out with injuries while Larry Fitzgerald was given a veteran’s day off.

At any rate, over the course of camp some days will belong to the offense and some to the defense, so this probably isn’t anything to worry about.

And with that in mind, here are some notes.

The Good

– Brittan Golden scored a touchdown on a nice corner route during the two-minute offense.

– Chris Hubert, who has flashed at times this camp, scored on a long touchdown pass from Carson Palmer during 7-on-7. He also fared well during the two-minute offense.

– Jaron Brown was on the receiving end of a nice deep ball from Drew Stanton during some 7-on-7 work.

– Andre Ellington continues to remind people what he’s capable of when healthy. Early in practice, he made a nice catch off a Palmer pass during 7-on-7.

– Everyone who mentions Stepfan Taylor notes how solid the running back is, and Thursday he made a nice play when he took a handoff and made an excellent cutback for a good gain in 11-on-11.

– Rookie cornerback Brandon Williams broke up a pass that was intended for Michael Floyd.

The Bad

– Earlier in the day, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Matt Barkley had done some nice things over the previous couple of practices. Thursday, however, seemed to be a step back for the QB, who misfired on a handful of throws and even threw a short pass at the intended target’s feet.


– Earl Watford received plenty of reps with the second-team at center.

– The Cardinals showed some of their two-running back plays, with both David Johnson and Andre Ellington on the field at the same time.

– Speaking of David Johnson, he is still a mismatch as a receiver out of the backfield.


“It’s not a grind. How can it be a grind with one practice in air conditioning and you stay in a five-star hotel? That ain’t a grind. A grind is two practices, three hours and both in pads (and staying) in a (expletive) dorm in some campus somewhere in the middle of nowhere. That’s a grind. Two bars and nowhere to go.” – Bruce Arians on why he tells players camp isn’t a grind

“I think the comparison would be the togetherness. You’ve got your star players who are willing to be coached, and they bring everybody along; they try to help everybody. We know this is a competitive business, we know everybody wants to be the hero. When you have guys still willing to give somebody advice, that’s the making of a championship team.” – Red Bryant on how Cardinals compare to championship teams he’s been on

Injury update

Right guard Evan Mathis along with tight end Jermaine Gresham and receiver Frank Okafor returned to practice. It did not look like anyone left early with any injuries, though Jaron Brown did seem to suffer some sort of ding late in the session.

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