All-Access with Bruce Arians: ‘Frisky’ Carson Palmer throws where coverage dictates

Sep 9, 2014, 11:46 PM | Updated: Sep 10, 2014, 1:21 am

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians meets with the media the day after every game, often times explaining injury situations as well as anything else he may have seen the day before.

Here in this space, we’ll highlight some of the most notable quotes.

“I was again, watching the tape, very pleased with the way we handled the ups and downs of the game. We talked about it going into the game that this was going to be a game, this football team, San Diego, they were going to have their chances, we were going to have our chances and it was going to go back and forth. We had the nice upswing before the half and they had the big upswing after the half. I really like the way we weathered it as a football team and played in the fourth quarter. The one thing I was looking for on the sideline was somebody that was in disbelief; I couldn’t find one. I couldn’t look in anybody’s eyes that didn’t think we were going to win that game in the fourth quarter, and that was a really good feeling as a coach.”

Can you take us through the health situations of some of your players?

“John Abraham is in the protocol, he’ll go through the concussion protocol and be day-to-day. Frostee (Rucker) will miss Wednesday for sure. He’ll be doubtful for the game with a calf. Other than that, everybody’s pretty much day-to-day.”

How did Andre Ellington handle playing through his injury?

“He’ll be in a boot today, which will be his protocol. He’ll play on it, he’ll be in a boot to calm it back down and then see how it goes. He’ll probably miss practice Wednesday, we’ll see how it goes, then practice Thursday and Friday.”

How do you think Tommy Kelly did?

“I thought Tommy Kelly did very good. A lot of pressure in the middle of the pocket — got really close a couple of times. I think he and Calais both, with their length, they have a tendency to bull rush and get low and when they can’t get there, they need to stop and get up, get their hands up. They could put a picket fence up there. It would be hard to throw down the middle, and it’s something we’ll work on.”

Does Andre Ellington playing through injury earn his teammates’ respect?

“Oh there’s no doubt. Guys are patting him on the back left and right. He cramped up in the fourth quarter, was right back in it. The long run, obviously, was something he can do and it was a big run for us.”

Why was Larry Fitzgerald not targeted much in the game?

“You have to ask the quarterback. He’s going out for a pass every time. I don’t look at that. We don’t design plays for guys to get the ball — that’s interceptions waiting to happen. You have guys go out and whatever the coverage dictates, you get it. The coverage dictated he wasn’t getting many. He was open a couple other times and we threw it somewhere else, but I’m not interested in anybody’s numbers other than the Ws. Those days are long gone.”

How would you assess the job your tackles did, especially Bobby Massie?

“I think Bobby had a solid game other than two plays. He gave up a sack and he jumped offsides, but other than that he played pretty solid. Fall on the fumble, don’t try to pick it up with a cast on your hand. But for him, against some really good dudes, he held his own. I think Jared (Veldheer) was solid.”

Were you surprised how well Carson Palmer moving around and out of the pocket?

“Yeah, he was very frisky. He looked younger. It might have been that outfit he had on in pregame warmups. I don’t know if anybody saw it, but he lost a quarterback bet so it was an ugly outfit. It was shirt torn and bandana and short shorts — it was hilarious. But it was huge in the game; his mobility in the game was huge. Obviously the last third and 10 when he got the first down in that drive was a very big, big play.”

Have you ever had a situation where you had two punters active?

“No, no, but with a rookie kicker we were going to bite the bullet and not have a new holder that he never worked with, especially I thought this game could come down to a field goal that would be the deciding points and I didn’t want a different holder out there.”

How was the secondary, and specifically the two starting cornerbacks?

“I think they were solid. Thank goodness we had a little pressure and Philip missed the one down the middle when Cro was beat. But where we’re putting them, they’re going to get beat sometimes. The pressure better get there. They got their work cut out for them every week, and I’m happy that they’re not satisfied.”

Thoughts on first road test this week in New York against the Giants?

“New York’s never an easy place to go to. The one thing you hate is to go into a team that’s wounded. They got beat, they’re embarrassed a little bit. I’m sure we’re going to get more than their best. Tom (Coughlin) is going to have them more than ready. We have a front that’s going to be extremely hard to block with the crowd noise, although we experienced crowd noise at our own place last night some. So it’s nothing new in that phase, but I know Eli (Manning), he’s got a lot of pride and we’ll get his best effort also.”

Do fans here need to learn to quiet down when the Cardinals have the ball?

“Yeah, and keep their tickets.”

Tyrann Mathieu did a lot of running before the game. Was there any inkling he may have been ready to play?

“No, no. Running is not his problem. Playing football is his problem right now. The quickness reaction, change of direction, covering those guys man-to-man that he has to do. Breaking down and tackling, which he did a little bit last week. He’s progressing nicely. He looked faster watching him run a little bit last night. I think he got caught up in the emotion of everything. It was very good for him.”

Would you like to get Jonathan Cooper more snaps?

“When he earns them. Not to just put somebody in the game. That ain’t no time to be getting someone experience, that’s called preseason.”

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All-Access with Bruce Arians: ‘Frisky’ Carson Palmer throws where coverage dictates