As the month of June begins to come to a close, this means one thing: Training Camp. And with the arrival of Training Camp, there are questions raised.
Hit the jump to see the ROTB Writing Staff's answers to three of these questions, and don't forget to answer the questions yourself in the comments below!
1) What do you think the CB Depth chart will look like at the beginning of the season?
Tyler Nickel: At the beginning of the season, I see Peterson and Toler with the starting jobs, with Fleming at the nickel and Gay being used all over in the secondary in special situations.
Jess Root: The potential depth at cornerback is exciting. I think Toler ends up the starter. Gay will start out as the nickel corner, but I have a feeling that Jamell Fleming will emerge to take over. Gay will get looks at corner and at safety. The flexibility the team will have in nickel and dime defenses will be fun to watch.
Jesse Reynolds: This is tough, I think Gay will start but Toler will quickly move him to the slot where he is supposedly a better fit. If Toler comes back 100%, I think his willingness to tackle and natural athletic ability will get him the spot making for a solid CB core - he just needs to earn the coaches trust first.
I have Peterson, Gay, Toler, LSH - He's that good (Just kidding - kind of), Flemming, Adams, Jefferson and Bulter (if we carry 6 CB's).
Alex Mann: Peterson, Followed by Gay, Toler, and Flemming. Originally would have had Flemming at the spot opposite Peterson, but that would more than likely mean injury... And well I don't want that.
CornerBack is one of our deepest positions right now, and while some of it is unproven and others is not all that quality we have a lot of bodies involved in the battle for the #2 CB position. Greg Toler
and Williams Gay likely have the inside track and I feel that Gay is going to win the starting job because of his familiarity with the system having played in it during his time in Pittsburgh. He was also a long time student of Ray Horton when Horton was the DB's coach in Pittsburgh. Toler will play the outside in nickel packages and Gay will then slide into the slot. The wildcard in this situation is going to be the development of Jamell Fleming and the willingness of the staff to play a rookie at the back end of the defense.
JoeCB1991: If Toler is fully recovered, I think he will win the job, then it will be Gay and Fleming. Plenty of depth at the position now though so I don't really think you can go wrong either way.
2) A few days ago, Ghettoboxx asked whether it would be a good idea to fire Coach Whiz and promote Ray Horton to Head Coach if this season does not turn out so great. What do you think?
Tyler Nickel: I like Horton, but we have a proven commodity with Whiz. How quickly some forget what he has done for this franchise...
I am VERY impressed by Ray Horton, but before we even start down this road, let us be reasonable. Whisenhunt is not the problem. He turned around Kurt Warner
and the team. He had a bad 2010, but he showed just how good a coach he is in 2011, as he kept the team from falling apart before they caught fire. Whisenhunt is one of the most respected coaches in the league now. You don't just let him go for a guy with very little experience even as a coordinator. We assume that he will be good at the head coaching part, but let us look to San Fran as a recent example -- Mike Singletary. Not saying Horton is Singletary, but the career path is similar.
Jesse Reynolds: It's way to soon to know the answer to this question. Can Horton's D sustain their level of play from last season, this entire season? If they do but the team struggles again and Horton gets offers to coach else where than it is something I would give serious consideration. As of right now, no I wouldn't.
Alex Mann: If it were middle of last season, I would be all over it. But I think something clicked and because of that, if he has a bad season next year he'll be safe for a half a year, if things don't get better. I don't see Horton wanting to leave this year, and if he's given the chance to be a HC here in Arizona, I'm sure he'll take it.
To me this is a no brainer, it would be a horrendous decision to fire Ken Whisenhunt. The one flaw he has is his development of Quarterbacks and really how much of that is a failing of his own ability as opposed to a failing of the quarterbacks coach. Other than that Whis has shown he has a willingness to make tough decisions for the betterment of the team. He holds a best player will play belief. He has installed a mentality within the team that is so much better than has ever been in an Arizona Cardinals
lockerroom. When you look back the key moment in the turning around of this franchise is not the signing of Warner (Which was made by Dennis Green), it was the decision to hire Whisenhunt as the Head Coach. This is no slight on Horton, who I have no doubt will be a head coach somewhere in the league by 2014, but more a big vote of confidence in the ability of Ken Whisenhunt as a very good NFL Head Coach.
JoeCB1991: I'll make this simple. No. We don't even know if Horton is ready to be a HC yet, I don't think this will be a good idea.
3) Out of all of the rookies selected in the 2012 NFL Draft, which one do you think will have the biggest rookie year?
I think Andrew Luck
is lined up to have a huge year as starting QB of the Colts
. He's got a few weapons and we know he's talented. Now he just has to apply it.
I can't even begin to think of the later picks, but if I look at the first round, I would have to say that Trent Richardson
, Michael Floyd
or Shea McClellin
will do it. Richardson easily could be the best player in the draft. Floyd will face an easier path to impact than Justin Blackmon
, as Floyd will benefit from being teammates with Larry Fitzgerald. Why McClellin? You look at how strong the Bears
defense always is and the fact that Julius Peppers
requires attention. He, like Floyd, will not be the focal point.
Jesse Reynolds: I think it will be Floyd, however I am hoping it is Massie for the obvious reasons.
Alex Mann: RGIII or Luck. Just based off of their draft position. If I were a complete Homer, I'd say Floyd, but I'll revert from him.
It is tough for me to not pick Trent Richardson in this situation. He is stepping into the starting RB job on a team that lacks offensive weapons but has a solid offensive line. He has the skillset to be an immediate starter and a big time impact player for the Cleveland Browns
in 2012. A pair of not quite darkhorse, but under the radar guys who will produce big seasons are both in the NFC North, Alshon Jeffrey reminds me in many ways of our own Larry Fitzgerald. He has a QB with a big arm throwing him the football and will not have all the attention on him in the passing game as he will be playing opposite Brandon Marshall, I expect Jeffrey to top all rookie receivers in 2012. On the defensive side of the ball is Harrison Smith in Minnesota. A player who was overlooked by most casual fans because of a lack of any stand out traits however he is also a player that has very few flaws. He has a complete game and is likely to start in the secondary of the Vikings
from day one in a division that is going to test the top of opposition defenses. He will have a lot of opportunity to make plays.
JoeCB1991: Trent Richardson because he is going to be the entire offense for the Browns once their season starts up.