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Suns coach Earl Watson and GM Ryan McDonough chat with Cardinals coach Bruce Arians and GM Steve Keim during practice Aug. 25. (Photo by Vince Marotta/Arizona Sports)
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Notes from the Nest: Cardinals’ final public practice is in the books

Suns coach Earl Watson and GM Ryan McDonough chat with Cardinals coach Bruce Arians and GM Steve Keim during practice Aug. 25. (Photo by Vince Marotta/Arizona Sports)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — And with that, the for-public version of 2016 version of Arizona Cardinals training camp has come to an end.

Sure, there is a session scheduled for Friday morning, but in terms of practices at University of Phoenix Stadium (and in San Diego), that fans can attend, they’re done. Finished. Kaput.

Thursday’s session saw the team in shells (shoulder pads), and it was a lively edition complete with more scout-team players as the Cardinals prepare for the Houston Texans.

The Good

– Carson Palmer looked rather sharp, hitting Michael Floyd on a nice deep ball early in 11-on-11 and later connecting with Jaron Brown for a touchdown.

– Patrick Peterson finished off a strong camp with an end zone interception of Matt Barkley.

– Drew Stanton did not seem to have much trouble with throwing the ball high. One of his nicer throws was a red zone touchdown to tight end Darren Fells.

– Chandler Jones was brought in to get after the quarterback, but in camp he’s dropped into coverage at times and on Thursday knocked away Matt Barkley pass near the goal line.

– Tyvon Branch has had a solid-yet-quiet camp, but Thursday he came up with an interception in 7-on-7.

– Linebacker Alani Fua, who had an interception Wednesday, picked off a Barkley pass Thursday.

– Late in practice, safety Tony Jefferson ripped a ball away from Jaxon Shipley in the end zone for an interception.

– Troy Niklas continued to look like a solid option in the passing game.

The Bad

– Like seeing a unicorn, folks in attendance Thursday saw a Jaron Brown drop.

– There seemed to be a lot of jumping offsides by the defense, at least with the backups on the field.

Notable

– Tyrann Mathieu still seems to be getting most of his 11-on-11 work in packages where he can play a single-high safety position.

– On Wednesday, Jake Coker ran the majority of scout team plays, but on Thursday it was Matt Barkley’s turn.

– John Brown took part in a good portion of practice but was wearing a yellow non-contact jersey.

– A group of players and staffers from the Phoenix Suns organization were in attendance, including owner Robert Sarver, coach Earl Watson and players Devin Booker and Tyson Chandler.

– Also in attendance was Valley icon and singer Jordin Sparks.

Injury Report

Practiced in some capacity: Larry Fitzgerald, Brittan Golden, Ed Stinson, Earl Watford

Left practice early: John Brown

Did not practice: Alex Okafor, Elie Bouka, Shaq Riddick

Quotable

“No, not at all. I know I’d be talking to the wind. Julie (Leach) ain’t letting that happen.” – Bruce Arians when asked if he thought about asking long snapper Mike Leach to come out of retirement

“Yeah, the last two years. So it’s good to have goals set like that; a lot of the time you want to start small and take steps and just talk about winning the division and things of that sort, but we’ve done that and now we want to win a Super Bowl. We know we have a lot of work to do and it’s not going to be easy, but we have the guys, we have the character, we have the leadership to get it done.” – Frostee Rucker on if he’s been on a team that’s embraced high expectations like this one

“They call me ‘Junkyard Dog’, they call me ‘Junk’, so I like that. I’m going to stick with it.” – Markus Golden on if he has a nickname

Some stories to read

Patrick Peterson says the biggest challenge is for Arizona to be as great as a year ago

In All-Access, Bruce Arians talked about his thoughts as camp came to an end

Brandon Williams, Defensive Rookie of the Year favorite?

Perhaps Suns rookie Marquese Chriss should have been a quarterback

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