4-9-11: Bird Droppings - Another Slow Weekend

Not much Cardinals news for today, a look back at how predicting the success of past QB classes can be tricky (uses the 06 Draft where Vince Young is being run out of Tennessee due to his immaturity, Matt Leinart was booted out after Whiz for some reason decided that Derek Anderson was a capable starter during the Preseason, and Jay Cutler has had some success although he is being criticized for not wanting to play through a torn MCL during the NFC Championship Game). Also, stuff on the Coyotes making the playoffs again, the D-Backs curb stomping the Reds and Jared Dudley getting his 10th dunk in a loss that didn't really have any other redeeming moments.

NFL.com news: Predicting success of quarterback classes can be quite tricky
With so much guesswork and uncertainty about this year's quarterback draft class, I thought I'd conjure up some recent history about a quarterback group that was projected pretty much as being can't-miss.

Mocks focus on same eight for NFC West - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Three quick thoughts after seeing where analysts Mel Kiper, Todd McShay, Rob Rang and Nolan Nawrocki see NFC West teams heading in the first round of the 2011 NFL draft:

Phoenix Coyotes clinch postseason with home finale win
One point - representing a second consecutive playoff appearance after eight years of futility - had been dangling just out of the reach of the Coyotes for several days. They grasped the prize firmly Friday night, getting two against their chief nemesis this season. With their 4-3 win over the San Jose Sharks, the Coyotes reached 99 points and stayed in the mix to nab the fourth spot in the Western Conference and secure the home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

Arizona Diamondbacks roll in Chase Field opener
One morning early in spring training, Diamondbacks right-hander Ian Kennedy stood around with new teammates and coaches after a bullpen session and, by way of introducing himself as a pitcher, explained how he'll throw any pitch in almost any situation. If the Cincinnati Reds didn't already know this, they found out Friday night at Chase Field. Kennedy baffled them over eight innings of one-run ball, and the Diamondbacks rolled to a 13-2 blowout in their home opener in front of an announced sellout crowd of 48,027.

Phoenix Suns fall to New Orleans Hornets without Steve Nash
When another Suns loss was recorded - leaving New Orleans essentially a missed goaltending call in January from a four-game series sweep - Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry sounded like a starving man who had been staring through the bakery window all night. All that defense on the opposing side. All that help, commitment and teamwork defensively. New Orleans spotted the Suns 30 points in the first 9:21 its 109-97 win Friday night but limited them to 42.6 percent shooting the rest of the game at New Orleans Arena.

Phoenix Suns' Steve Nash finds little consolation in possible assists title
Between not going to the playoffs and a right-hamstring strain that sidelined him Friday night, Suns guard Steve Nash is having a hard time enjoying anything. That also goes for him closing in on his fifth NBA assists title in the past seven years. The historical significance might be something he enjoys telling his three kids someday, but it means little now.

Arizona Rattlers still looking to improve after 4-0 start
Though the Arizona Rattlers held on to the No. 1 ranking in the Arena Football League coaches' poll, coach Kevin Guy said, "Obviously, things have to get better." That includes starting games better and improving coverage in the secondary. In the Rattlers' 48-47 victory over Orlando on Saturday, Guy was pleased with the play of the defensive line but noted that the secondary didn't have a stop until the final minute, when Virgil Gray intercepted a tipped pass.

Arizona Diamondbacks hoping to avoid another long summer
In darker times, Diamondbacks players have looked around Chase Field and felt abandoned, like forgotten children lost in the orphanage. The bouts of self-pity are hereby over.

NFL.com news: Polian: Colts could select Manning's successor in this draft
Peyton Manning has made 11 Pro Bowls, won the NFL's Most Valuable Player award a league-record four times and claimed one Super Bowl championship. He was the MVP in that game, too. Manning also ranks third in NFL history in passing yards (54,828) and touchdowns (399). But he's 35 years old, meaning the Indianapolis Colts now must think about the previously unthinkable: life without their surefire Hall of Fame quarterback.

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