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12-2-11: Arizona Cardinals Bird Droppings - Acho Making Plays

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Time for some links, including a piece on how well Acho has done in his rookie season.

Arizona Cardinals News:

A Bigger Fitz Impact Vs. Dallas
Notebook: Porter returns; Beanie's follow-up; Cards sell out

Cardinals' Sam Acho making plays in rookie season
Sam Acho's performance since becoming a starter five weeks ago suggests the Cardinals outside linebacker thoroughly understands a defense that often takes others a few years to learn, if they ever do. But coordinator Ray Horton knew Acho's comfort level way before last week's splashy performance against the Rams, when the rookie had two sacks, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. Horton knew it a month or so ago by watching Acho on one simple play. Acho moved outside from his usual outside linebacker spot to cover a receiver, and Horton thought he was going to have to correct the rookie. But when the ball was snapped, Acho rushed the passer, as he was assigned. "You know when players 'get it' because they are able to go one place and come back," Horton said. "He understood what he was doing, but he also understood how to disguise and make it look like something else." Horton doesn't use the words "bright" or "intelligent" to describe Acho. He prefers "brilliant."

Arizona Cardinals shuffling fourth and fifth receivers
The promotion of Jaymar Johnson from the practice squad this week gives the Cardinals seven receivers on the 53-man roster, one more than they normally carry. The Cardinals usually have five receivers active for games, and the top three slots are set with Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Roberts and Early Doucet. It will be interesting to see how they fill the fourth and fifth slots from week to week. Coach Ken Whisenhunt isn't providing hints. blogs - Kent Somers - Larry Fitzgerald, information manager
Larry Fitzgerald collects passes, yards, touchdowns and information. The Cardinals receiver constantly surprises with how much he knows when it comes to football, the NFL and the Cardinals. The latest example came last Sunday in St. Louis. The Cardinals were ahead, 23-20, when they made a first down to put the game away with fewer than two minutes remaining. Fitzgerald knew that running back Beanie Wells had 214 yards rushing. How? That was easy. "I looked up at the (scoreboard) at the stats they have for fantasy players," Fitzgerald said. (That's a new thing in stadiums this year). But Fitzgerald also knew that the Cardinals rushing record for a single game was 214 yards, held by LeShon Johnson. How? "I know all the team records," he said.

Welcome back, Kevin Kolb, meet DeMarcus Ware -
Kevin Kolb will probably start Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys. The quarterback, who has missed the last four games due to various ailments, has taken the starter's share of reps in practice this week, and seems to be good to go.

Whisenhunt says mindset is the difference with Beanie -
Everyone can agree that Chris "Beanie" Wells looks like a different running back this year. In eleven weeks he has 849 yards on 181 attempts, and he's averaging 4.7 yards per carry with eight touchdowns. He's running like a man possessed…something we didn't see from Wells last season. Head coach Ken Whisenhunt thinks the mental and physical aspects of the game go hand-in-hand for Wells.

Big Red Rage - Rhodes and Acho
LB Sam Acho joined Paul Calvisi, Ron Wolfley, and Kerry Rhodes to talk about his breakout game as a pro and the upcoming match-up with the Cowboys.

Cards Daily - Patrick "Game Changer" Peterson
Damien Anderson spends a minute with the record breaking rookie to discuss his punt return abilities and his development as a corner in his first NFL season.

Video: Arizona Cardinals vs. Dallas Cowboys early preview
The Arizona Republic's Kent Somers talks about the Cardinals' matchup Sunday against the visiting Dallas Cowboys.

Arizona Sports News:

Winnipeg Jets shut out Shane Doan, Phoenix Coyotes
Ondrej Pavelec made 33 saves in his second shutout of the season and Bryan Little's first-period goal held up as the Jets beat Phoenix 1-0 on Thursday night in the Coyotes' first game back in Winnipeg since leaving for the desert in 1996. Little scored the game's only goal off a rebound while Coyotes goalie Mike Smith was out of position.

NFL News:

Donovan McNabb Released By Vikings, Hits The Waiver Wire -
The Vikings granted Donovan McNabb's request to be released and the veteran QB now hits the waiver wire.

Rolando McClain Arrested; Raiders LB Charged With Assault, Firing Weapon -
Raiders LB Rolando McClain has been arrested. According to police in Decatur, Alabama, McClain is charged with third degree assault, menacing, reckless endangerment and discharging a firearm in city limits.

Rolando McClain's Stylin' Mugshot - From Our Editors -
Oakland Raiders LB Rolando McClain was arrested Thursday in Decatur, Alabama and has been charged with Assault in the Third Degree, Menacing, Reckless Endangerment, and Discharging a Firearm Inside the City Limits after allegedly being involved in a fight which ended with McClain holding a gun to another man's head. Here is his mugshot.

Peyton Manning Injury: Colts QB Learns Good News From Surgeon -
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning isn't far enough along in his recovery to hop back onto the field and dive back into action, but he did receive some good news on Thursday. Following x-rays and CT scans, Manning's neck surgeon came back with good news, saying the fusion in Manning's neck has taken hold. It's a step forward, not a massive leap, but a positive step nonetheless.

Marshawn Lynch's Skittles Obsession Pays Off, Causes Problems - From Our Editors -
Marshawn Lynch should probably get an endorsement deal now. With the game he's having in Seattle on Thursday Night Football, his Skittles obsession is getting plenty of play on the air. Score a touchdown, eat some Skittles. Come out of a commercial break, eat some Skittles in the huddle. Lynch is basically replacing Gatorade with Skittles.

VIDEO: DeSean Jackson, Vince Young Have Awkward Sideline Encounter -
It's always dangerous to read body language, especially while doing it by way of national television. Still, something looks off with DeSean Jackson on the sideline during Thursday Night Football. He's distant and just doesn't seem to be interacting with his teammates.

VIDEO: DeSean Jackson's Postgame Interview Gone Wrong -
The Philadelphia Eagles have a lot of individual talent but they clearly can't play as a team and that was visible when Seattle Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch ran into the Eagles defensive line where it seems like every Philly defender converged until we saw Lynch pop out the other side and scamper in for a 15-yard touchdown. Head coach Andy Reid was questioned several times about this play, and whether the effort was there, but Reid couldn't give an answer for his team's 31-14 loss to the Seahawks.

Brandon Marshall Briefly Detained After Dispute Over Cab Fare -
Miami Dolphins receiver Brandon Marshall was briefly detained, then released without charges following a dispute on Nov. 14 about cab fare.

Rumors arise of a JaMarcus Russell comeback | ProFootballTalk
Brett Favre isn’t coming back. Jeff Garcia isn’t coming back. Kenny Stabler isn’t coming back. But JaMarcus Russell could be.