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11-26-10: Arizona Cardinals Bird Droppings

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So, after taking a day off for Thanksgiving , the links are back. Enjoy.

Revisiting The Rivalry
Records aren't what was expected, but Cards-49ers still "emotional"

Talkin’ practice on Thanksgiving eve
Derek Anderson was doing his weekly press conference with the media after practice Wednesday when, at one point, he was asked about scoring on the opening drive for a second straight week and then basically stalling the rest of the game. It could have been many different topics to generate the response the quarterback gave. "It’s the same things we have been doing, hurting ourselves," Anderson said. "Honestly, I’m sick of talking about it just as much as you guys are sick of talking about it." Anderson couldn’t have been more accurate. blogs - Kent Somers - Thanksgiving eve notes
Rookie nose tackle Dan Williams hasn't been able to beat out Bryan Robinson for the starting job, but coach Ken Whisenhunt said he is pleased with the development of Williams, the first-round pick. "I think where you have really seen the progress Dan Williams has made has been on our goal-line defense," Whisenhunt said. "We've kept guys out of the end zone when they've been at the 1 or the 2-yard line. A big part of that is the way Dan has anchored the middle. He's going to really be a good player for us."

Cardinal Kerry Rhodes giving back this holiday season | | AccuScore
Arizona Cardinals' safety Kerry Rhodes finding was to give back to those in need this holiday season.

Arizona Cardinals not sure what to expect from home crowd Monday night
The last time the Cardinals played at home they were serenaded by boos throughout a 36-18 loss to the Seahawks. Since then, they lost at Kansas City, extending their losing streak to five games. So the Cardinals might not be greeted with open arms as they return home for three consecutive games, starting Monday night against the 49ers. - Cardinals to wear black jerseys Monday night against 49ers
The Arizona Cardinals announced that the team will wear its third uniform this Monday against the San Francisco 49ers. - Blame spread around for Arizona's defensive woes
Like just about everyone associated with the Arizona Cardinals, defensive coordinator Bill Davis is tired of talking about the reasons for the team's five- game losing streak. Davis said "there's not a whole lot to say right now that hasn't been said" as the team prepares for next Monday night's game against San Francisco. - Cardinals vs. 49ers is still a rivalry game
When the 2010 schedule was released in April, there probably weren't a lot of people - especially the folks at ESPN - who anticipated the Cardinals and 49ers would share identical 3 and 7 records in their Week 12 matchup in front of a national television audience on Monday Night Football. Despite their seasons - the Cardinals have dropped five straight while the Niners opened 0-and-5 - the intensity of the rivalry has not changed. - Cardinals finding positives in mistake-filled season
Struggling their way to a 3-7 record, not much has gone right for the Arizona Cardinals. Still, head coach Ken Whisenhunt has been able to find some positives in the midst of a five-game losing streak, especially scoring on the opening drive in the last two games. But, as the coach continued, he lamented something that has plagued the team throughout this season: mistakes.

Beanie Wells Wants More Carries, Understandably So - Desert Dirt - SB Nation Arizona
For the second time this season, Arizona Cardinals running back Beanie Wells has spoken to the media about his frustration with his involvement in the offense and the offensive playcalling of Coach Ken Whisenhunt in general. He did it once before the game against the New Orleans Saints and again this week before the Cardinals' Monday Night Football game against the San Francisco 49ers.

Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers face 'make or break' game on Monday night
A contest between two teams with 3-7 records probably won't prompt all your rowdy friends to come over on Monday night. But whether you watch the Cardinals play the 49ers this Monday or not, San Francisco linebacker Patrick Willis doesn't care. "If you think it's going to be a bad Monday night game, I wouldn't watch," Willis said in a conference call with Arizona reporters this week. "But for me, I think it is going to be a good Monday night game. I really don't pay attention to who's going to be watching. All I know is that we have to show up on Monday ready to play a game." Pitting teams tied for last place in the NFL's worst division, the NFC West, is not what schedule makers had in mind for this game. The Cardinals have won the past two division titles, and the 49ers were supposed to contend.

Arizona Cardinals rookie Dan Williams keeps weight down
It's funny what a few extra energy drinks, even those touted as low-calorie, can do. For Cardinals rookie Dan Williams, they made him tip the scales a bit too much, and the 6-foot-3, 327-pound nose tackle sat out a game earlier this season. He learned a lesson along the way.

Campbell, Toler sit out
DE Calais Campbell (ankle) and CB Greg Toler (foot) were the two Cardinals to sit out practice Thursday as the Cards had an abbreviated Thanksgiving workout. Six other Cards were limited: CB Michael Adams (ribs), WR Steve Breaston (knee), DT Darnell Dockett (shoulder), WR Early Doucet (head), LB Clark Haggans (groin) and RB LaRod Stephens-Howling (hamstring). S Kerry Rhodes (hand/back) and LB Reggie Walker (hamstring) were both listed but practiced full. Coach Ken Whisenhunt said the extra day of practice is less about doing extra and more about spreading two days of work over three days "which is just a way to keep the guys in tune to what we are doing."

Cardinals Underground Podcast (SF Preview)
Paul Calvisi, Darren Urban, and Ron Wolfley take a look at the upcoming match-up with San Francisco and more!

Video Gallery
Whisenhunt on injuries and M. Green; DA on rivalry

Video Gallery
Cards feed the hungry

Video Gallery
Cards thinking about 49ers on Thanksgiving Day

Video Gallery
First Look - The Ken Whisenhunt Show - Week 12

The Big Red Rage with Wilson and Campbell
Calais Campbell joins the Big Red Rage with Adrian Wilson, Paul Calvisi, and Ron Wolfley.

Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls rally past Phoenix Suns
For anyone who missed the Suns' first 14 games of the season, the Suns put them all into one show with bonus time they never should have seen Wednesday night. There was the Suns at their best in a 36-17 first quarter that led to a 23-point second-quarter lead. There were the Suns who lose opposing shooters, can't stop dribble penetration and offer more second chances than a parent. In the end, the Suns are barely a losing team (7-8) because they barely dropped a 123-115 decision to Chicago in double overtime at US Airways Center, losing to a Bulls team that played its fifth consecutive road game and had lost Tuesday in Los Angeles.

Arizona Cardinals vs. San Francisco 49ers: 5 Things the Cards Need To Do Better | Bleacher Report
On Monday the Arizona Cardinals face the San Francisco 49ers in the first of three back—to—back home games. It is the very definition of a must win game. Monday night, prime time, at home, against division rivals, with an inseparable record.

Arizona Cardinals: Wells, Hightower or Stephens-Howling, Analyzing the Cards Run | Bleacher Report
Arizona are used to being amongst the worst teams rushing, so that particular statistic is no surprise, however, in the past few years, their high powered passing offence has more than made up for it. In 2010, the Cardinals passing game has been all but useless, whereas the rushing game has looked to have potential. But if Arizona are going to stand a chance of making a run for the playoffs, then it is going to have to come on the ground.

Donovan McNabb, Michael Vick; Arizona Cardinals, Reach Out And Touch Someone | Bleacher Report
Does it take more than a season like 2010 to show you what you need to win in the NFL, if you are the Cardinals? Well if the writing isn’t on the wall, I am not sure what more has to happen in order for management to realize how important it is to have an elite quarterback on your team. - 2011 NFC West free-agent preview
The players listed in each team report below are not signed for the 2011 season. Because of the expiring Collective Bargaining Agreement between NFL players and owners, it is not yet known how many accrued years of service will be necessary to qualify for free agency and, thus, what type of free agent a player would be. After a player's name, we show his years of NFL service (including 2010), which will determine his free-agent type. It is likely that any player with six years or more of NFL experience will qualify for unrestricted free agency in 2011. However, it is possible that five years, or even four (as was the case in 2009 and before), will be enough to become unrestricted. Players with three years of experience are likely to continue to be restricted free agents, as well as those players with more experience but who fall short of the new CBA cutoff for unrestricted free agency. - Cardinals unlikely to trade Fitzgerald
With the Cardinals’ offense drying up big-time in the desert, there has been increased speculation on the future of star WR Larry Fitzgerald. Rumors that the Cardinals might attempt to trade Fitzgerald before his contract runs out after the 2011 season are picking up steam, but inside sources have a hard time envisioning that scenario.

How the players react
Late Wednesday night, I received this Tweet from “Gloryaz”: “@Cardschatter how come when I watch cards hq on fsn, the players seem happy someone is interviewing them insted of mad they are sucking?!?!” For those who are not familiar, “Cards HQ” is our broadcast department’s half-hour show that comes out Wednesdays. It is basically 30 minutes of sound bites, allowing the players’ and coaches’ own words to describe the most recent game and then look ahead to the upcoming game. The interviews are from post-game Sunday, Monday and then Wednesday. And that’s how things change.

Beanie Wells wants the ball more | ProFootballTalk
The Cardinals are last in the league in rushing attempts, with 196. Cardinals running back Beanie Wells knows the numbers, and he doesn’t like them.

NFC West is turning out to be the NFC Worst this season
Two years ago, at about the time that Cris Collinsworth declared the Super Bowl-bound Cardinals the worst playoff team in history, crunched some numbers to determine which really were the worst ever. Turned out that while the 9-7 1998 wild-card Cardinals ranked among their 10 worst, those 2008 NFC West champions with an identical 9-7 mark weren't close.

Continuity not on the line for NFC West - NFC West Blog - ESPN
The last two Super Bowl teams from the NFC West -- the 2005 Seattle Seahawks and the 2008 Arizona Cardinals -- started the same five players in the same five spots every game except one. Seattle rested left tackle Walter Jones in Week 17. No team in the NFC West has started the same five offensive linemen each week this season.

NFL Picks, Week 12: Thanksgiving Football Schedule Calls For Wins - Desert Dirt - SB Nation Arizona
It's Week 12 of the NFL season -- the week that we sit down around the table, dig into a fantastic meal, hang out with our families as long as we are required and as little as we can get away with, and then eventually sneak away to watch a traditional schedule of Thanksgiving football! But before you tuck in and veg out, check out our "expert" picks against the spread.

What should the NFL do about its Thanksgiving tradition?
There is a reason why the NFL has become an $8-billion-a-year industry. The league knows how to keep its gold-mine brand relevant and above reproach. In short, it isn't afraid of change.

How I See It: NFC West Stock Watch - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Ben Patrick, Cardinals TE. The Cardinals have always wanted Patrick to emerge. Instead, Patrick has faded. Arizona replaced Patrick in the starting lineup Sunday even though the Cardinals opened the game with two tight ends (former Cardinal Leonard Pope even started for Kansas City). When Arizona took over possession near midfield late in the third quarter, a holding penalty against Patrick contributed to the drive stalling. Arizona trailed 21-6 at the time. A touchdown drive would have gotten the Cardinals back into the game. Patrick previously committed a holding penalty on the Cardinals' first drive at Minnesota.

NFC West: Injury situations that matter - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Arizona: The Cardinals' injury report is not due until Thursday, one day later than usual, because the team is playing on Monday night. Running backs LaRod Stephens-Howling and Jason Wright could return this week, restoring flexibility to the offense and pop to the kick-return game. The team expects outside linebacker Clark Haggans to return, and just in time. Backup Will Davis landed on injured reserve with a broken leg. Rookie O'Brien Schofield could get some snaps, but the team is reluctant to play him extensively at this point. Cornerbacks Greg Toler and Michael Adams have injury concerns. Expect more details to emerge Thursday.

2011 NFL Draft: The Andrew Luck Sweepstakes | The Big Lead
Stanford QB Andrew Luck will almost certainly be the No. 1 pick in the 2011 draft. In September we took a look at the Top 10 – today we just focus on teams closing in on the No. 1 pick, and whether or not they’d take Luck.

Jeff Fisher says Vince Young’s text apology won’t do any good | ProFootballTalk
Titans coach Jeff Fisher didn’t have much use for Vince Young‘s text message apology. "I’m not a real big text guy. I’m not really into this new age stuff. I don’t twit or tweet, but I think face-to-face is a man thing," Fisher said on Wednesday via

Bills’ Stevie Johnson fined $5,000 for TD celebration | ProFootballTalk
Bills receiver Stevie Johnson lifted up his jersey to reveal a Joker-themed message on his undershirt after scoring a touchdown on Sunday, and now he’s paying for it. The NFL fined Johnson $5,000.

Week 12 Thanksgiving 10-pack | ProFootballTalk
We’ve moved the Friday 10-pack to Thursday, since posting it on Thursday puts the Thanksgiving games in play for our 10 takes regarding the coming weekend of games. news: Favre: Simplify Vikes' offense; Frazier welcomes QB's input
Brett Favre figures to have at least a little more freedom in the Vikings' offense, now that the head coach he sometimes clashed with over strategy and play calls has been fired. Interim replacement Leslie Frazier, who took over this week for Brad Childress, said Wednesday that he welcomes Favre's input "wholeheartedly" and pointed to Peyton Manning's success in Indianapolis as support for a veteran quarterback-fueled game plan. Well, here's one item high on Favre's list: Keep it simple, stupid!

Video: Four people who are very thankful for Chris Henry - Shutdown Corner - NFL  - Yahoo! Sports
You hear a lot of stories around the holidays that are designed to elicit an emotional response - prefab "Hallmark Moments". But once in a while, you see the results of a graceful and unselfish gesture that really knocks you off your feet. So it has been for Carolyn Glaspy, the mother of former Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chris Henry, who lost his life in the early morning of Dec. 17, 2009 after a fall from a moving vehicle the day before.

Report: Titans will pay Vince Young’s 2011 roster bonus | ProFootballTalk
At a time when it’s becoming increasingly obvious that Titans owner Bud Adams will be required to choose come 2011 between quarterback Vince Young and coach Jeff Fisher, it’s becoming increasingly obvious that the octogenarian is skewing Young. news: The Black Eyed Peas will play Super Bowl XLV halftime show
Now I know that I will mute the Halftime show.

Titans' Mike Heimerdinger will delay cancer treatment, coach - NFL -
Tennessee offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger is back at work and will call the plays Sunday when the Titans visit the Houston Texans before starting his treatment for cancer.

Reggie Bush More of a Liability Than Asset in Win Over Cowboys | NFL Spin Zone
For about the past two months, all we’ve heard when talking about the New Orleans Saints’ struggling offense is how Reggie Bush is key. When Bush is back in the lineup, all their woes will be gone and they’ll be back to their 2009 form. Yeah, unless of course everyone was overrating and over-hyping Bush as always.

49ers players bag on coaching staff | ProFootballTalk
49ers coach Mike Singletary has yet to exterminate the "rat" in the building.

Dez Bryant has a day to forget | ProFootballTalk
At times this year, Dez Bryant has shown what a huge star he’s going to be in the NFL. There have also been days like Thursday where he looks like the rookie he is.

Shaun Hill says a Patriots player tried to break his arm | ProFootballTalk
Hill has been playing with a broken left (non-throwing) forearm the last few weeks, and he says one Patriot player tried to break it again. Hill appeared to fumble the ball on a quarterback sneak at one point, but was ruled down on the play despite losing the ball. "That’s why I eventually gave up the ball," Hill said via "Somebody was down there literally trying to break my arm, which is already broken. Literally, trying. And, uh, y’know, I guess wasn’t seen [by officials]."

Tony Romo still wants to play this year | ProFootballTalk
The Cowboys’ Thanksgiving loss ends any hope that they could make the playoffs this season. But quarterback Tony Romo still wants to return, even if it’s just for a couple meaningless games at the end of the year.

Patriots vs. Lions - Recap - November 25, 2010 - NFL - Football -
Tom Brady was perfect on the field and his exit was first class. Brady threw a season-high four touchdown passes, all in the second half, and the New England Patriots routed the Detroit Lions 45-24 on Thursday after trailing by 11 late in the second quarter.

Saints vs. Cowboys - Recap - November 25, 2010 - NFL - Football -
As Roy Williams ran toward the end zone, he realized the importance of his breakaway catch-and-run. Just hold onto it, he thought, and the Dallas Cowboys would pull off one of their greatest Thanksgiving comebacks. He even switched the ball from one hand to another to make sure he kept it from the defender in front of him. The guy behind him changed everything.

Bengals vs. Jets - Recap - November 25, 2010 - NFL - Football -
One shoe or two, Brad Smith was too much for the Bengals. Smith, the Jets' Mr. Everything, scored on an 89-yard kickoff return during which he lost his left shoe and also had a 53-yard touchdown run in New York's 26-10 victory over Cincinnati on Thursday night.