3-29-12: Arizona Cardinals Bird Droppings - Fitz Travels

Time for some links, with today looking at the travels of Larry Fitzgerald now going to Africa to help bring aid to people with Anquan Boldin.

Arizona Cardinals News:

Travels Let Fitzgerald Help Out
Pro Bowl receiver teams with Boldin to aid during African drought

azcentral.com blogs - Kent Somers - Whisenhunt talks QBs with NFL Network
In an interview with Albert Breer of the NFL Network, coach Ken Whisenhunt said he is "excited" about the team's quarterback position even though Peyton Manning chose the Broncos over the Cardinals.

Word From the Birds Blog - New rules instituted at owners meetings
With all the overtime games the Cardinals played in 2011, it’s amazing that, had the playoff overtime rule been in place at the time — the one mandating a possession for each team, unless a touchdown was scored first — it wouldn’t have mattered in any of Arizona’s four OT wins. Three came after the Cards had held a possession on defense, and the fourth came after the Cards scored a TD on the opening possession of the overtime. Nevertheless, the NFL owners voted to make the playoff overtime rule the regular season rule. Basically, a team can’t win on an opening possession of overtime on just a field goal.

Ken Whisenhunt: Cardinals excited to have two good quarterbacks | ProFootballTalk
Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt says anyone interpreting his pursuit of Peyton Manning as an indication that he lacks confidence in his quarterbacks is incorrect. In fact, Whisenhunt told Albert Breer of NFL Network that the Manning chase has nothing to do with how he feels about Kevin Kolb or John Skelton.

Resolved? Seahawks top threat to 49ers - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Five first-team All-Pro selections, an NFL high, return to the NFC West champion San Francisco 49ers. The NFL's coach of the year, Jim Harbaugh, returns along with every starter from a defense that allowed 14.3 points per game, third-fewest in franchise history. The 49ers are, by any reasonable measure, the team to beat in the NFC West this season. But which team is best positioned to overtake them in the division? Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. pointed north to the Seattle Seahawks, and those leaving more than 2,000 comments in reply generally agreed.

Resolved? Seahawks top threat to 49ers - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Five first-team All-Pro selections, an NFL high, return to the NFC West champion San Francisco 49ers. The NFL's coach of the year, Jim Harbaugh, returns along with every starter from a defense that allowed 14.3 points per game, third-fewest in franchise history. The 49ers are, by any reasonable measure, the team to beat in the NFC West this season. But which team is best positioned to overtake them in the division? Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. pointed north to the Seattle Seahawks, and those leaving more than 2,000 comments in reply generally agreed.

Video: Gaining ground in NFC West - NFC West Blog - ESPN
The San Francisco 49ers outscored the St. Louis Rams, Arizona Cardinals, Seattle Seahawks and New York Giants by a combined 65 points in the first meetings between those teams last season. The margin shrunk to plus-four in the rematches. Venue played into the 61-point drop in differential. Each of the rematches against the Rams, Cardinals and Seahawks took place away from San Francisco. But there was also no denying the improvement those 49ers opponents made between first and second meetings. One question to consider is whether improved familiarity with the 49ers' schemes will allow opponents to further close the gap in 2012.

NFL points of emphasis point to NFC West - NFC West Blog - ESPN
A confusing judgment call favoring the New York Giants enabled their comeback victory over the Arizona Cardinals in Week 4. Was Giants receiver Victor Cruz really down when he lost the football late in the game? A fumble in that situation likely would have killed the Giants' chances for a comeback. Who knows, an Arizona victory might have changed the course of NFL history given that the Giants later sneaked into the playoffs with a 9-7 record, then won a Super Bowl title. Would they have been a postseason team at all without that victory? Tough to tell, and irrelevant now. But the issue relating to the Cruz play lives on. The NFL apparently had that situation and a few others from NFC West teams' games in mind when identifying officiating points of interest for the 2012 season.

Zoom: Episode 3 Preview
On the next episode of Zoom, we profile Cardinals TE Jeff King who uses film study to prepare for games as well as his post football career.

Arizona Sports News:

Phoenix Suns struggle with shot in loss to Los Angeles Clippers
Are the Suns the team that won more games in March than any other Western Conference team, or are they the one that has lost four of its past six games? The former version got them into the playoff race. The latter version blew a chance to get closer. The Suns could have pulled within a game of the three-way tie for seventh place in the West but lost for a second consecutive night, 103-86 to the Clippers on Wednesday night at sold-out Staples Center.

Lisa Love fired as Arizona State's Vice President of Athletics
Lisa Love, Arizona State's Vice President of Athletics, has been fired, sources told The Republic on Wednesday. The university has called an 11 a.m. news conference to announce Steve Patterson as the school's new Vice President of Athletics. According to ASU's release, Love is leaving the school to pursue other opportunities, but sources told The Republic that ASU President Michael Crow met with Love on Tuesday and at some point relieved her of her duties.

Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan ready to return
The punishment was a familiar one for Coyotes captain Shane Doan, but that didn't make the situation any easier. For the past week, Doan was a spectator rather than a participant, serving a three-game NHL suspension for elbowing the Dallas Stars' Jamie Benn.

No more Love at ASU for Lisa
Michael Crow finally admitted the mistake that was Lisa Love. Not that the former athletic director didn't have her strengths. They just weren't in the areas her school needed the most. She didn't talk like a football fan. She didn't speak their language. She didn't seem comfortable in front of the media. She hired search firms to find coaching candidates. Fair or otherwise, it created a perception that she was a puppet hire for the school president.

NFL News:

Jacobs makes 49ers bigger, older at RB - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Frank Gore, 28, is no longer the oldest halfback on the San Francisco 49ers. That distinction belongs to Brandon Jacobs, whose contract agreement with San Francisco gives the 49ers veteran insurance at a key position.

NFL Rule Changes: Instant Replay Reviews Now Include Turnovers - SBNation.com
NFL owners are meeting in Palm Beach, Fla. this week where they have voted on seven proposed rule changes. We already hit on the new overtime rules for the regular season so the next rule change involves instant replay. Owners voted to allow all turnovers to be subject to instant replay review without the coaching challenge needed.

NFL Rejects Rule Change To Booth Instant Replay; Tables Vote To Push Back Trade Deadline - SBNation.com
NFL owners wrapped up voting on more than a dozen rule changes at the league owners meeting in Palm Beach, Florida, on Wednesday morning. As a result of the vote, video replay will now apply to turnovers. That is the only change to the league’s replay system after owners rejected a proposal that would have made all video reviews the responsibility of replay officials in the booth, according to Jason LaCanfora of the NFL Network.

NFL Overtime Rule Change Passes; Same OT Rules For Regular Season, Playoffs - SBNation.com
NFL owners voted on several proposed rule changes and one of the big ones passed -- the playoff overtime rules will now be used in the regular season, too. This is a smart move because there was really no reason to have separate rules for the regular season and playoffs.

2012 NFL Schedule: Anticipating The Best Games After Cowboys Vs. Giants - SBNation.com
The NFL has announced just one game on the 2012 NFL schedule -- Cowboys vs. Giants in Week 1. Since we're talking schedule, we highlighted a few of the other games we're looking forward to the most this season.

Overtime change could cause problems | ProFootballTalk
Two years ago, I loudly supported the idea that sudden-death overtime places too much emphasis on the coin flip. And so the adjustment of the postseason overtime rule was a welcome change, even though I still think that, in a playoff game, the team that kicks off should have a chance to match a touchdown scored by the team that has the first possession. That said, I’m not sure that the elimination of sudden death is the best way to deal with overtime in a regular-season game.

Revis says Jets’ locker room is in "disarray" | ProFootballTalk
Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis is working his way through the so-called ESPN "car wash" on Wednesday, with a variety of appearances on the various ESPN platforms. Which appearing on SportsCenter, Revis essentially removed the T-tops during the spotless rinse cycle. Asked to play word association (there’s something original), Revis was given the term "locker room." His response, via ESPNNewYork.com? "Disarray right now."

Report: Browns inquired about Sam Bradford | ProFootballTalk
Rams coach Jeff Fisher revealed at this week’s league meetings that St. Louis has received phone calls about the availability of quarterback Sam Bradford in a possible trade. Alper speculated this morning that the Cleveland Browns may have been one of the teams calling the Rams. Per Tony Grossi of ESPNCleveland.com, Alper’s speculation was dead on.

Torry Holt To Retire As A St. Louis Ram - SBNation.com
The St. Louis Rams will sign Torry Holt so that he can retire as a member of the franchise.

Asante Samuel Trade Could Happen This Year - SBNation.com
Asante Samuel's name is being floated around as a potential trade chip and the Eagles should receive offers if that's the case, especially if he's willing to restructure his contract.

Goodell says 18-game season hasn’t been discussed "in a while" | ProFootballTalk
At an ownership meeting in 2010, Commissioner Roger Goodell said that an 18-game season could be utilized in 2012. It’s 2012, and there’s still no 18-game season. So what gives?

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