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3-23-11: Bird Droppings - Cards Meet With Gabbert, Miller And Kiper Interviews, Kick Returns

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INDIANAPOLIS, IN: Von Miller of Texas A&M works out during the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN: Von Miller of Texas A&M works out during the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
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Again, I'm a little bit late with this. I did not want to get the post up this late, but I'm having problems with my Wireless Internet connection right now, and I figured out a few minutes before this thing went up that using wired internet will work for now.

And no, time for some links including stuff on the Cards meeting with Gabbert, an interview with our mancrush Von Miller who says that he would like to play with the Cardinals, Kiper on possible draft picks for the Cards, more on the kickoff rules, a win by the Coyotes, and the epic Triple Overtime game between the Suns and the Lakers that the Suns unfortunately lost. blogs - Kent Somers - Cardinals go one-on-one with Blaine Gabbert
It turns out the Cardinals didn't take a non-stop flight home from the owners' meetings in New Orleans. All the important decision makers on the football side of the operation flew to Columbia, Mo., where they had dinner Tuesday night with quarterback Blaine Gabbert. Team officials had a private workout with Gabbert Wednesday morning, and the Cardinals were back in their offices early this afternoon.

Harbaugh, Whisenhunt lament human costs - NFC West Blog - ESPN
A few thoughts from NFC West head coaches on what they would miss most this offseason during an extended NFL lockout:

Word From the Birds Blog " Less Dockett means more Dockett? "
A little earlier today, Darnell Dockett tweeted out this message to the world: "ONE of my weakness is I have to rotate EARLY in the game! I feel like I can’t come out but watching this film its to my advantage that I do!" It’s an interesting self-evaluation by the Pro Bowl defensive lineman, and one that speaks to the importance of depth.

Word From the Birds Blog " Cards work out Gabbert "
There has been much talk about who the Cards are going to work out privately leading into the draft. One guy was Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert. On the way back from the league meetings in New Orleans, a group of Cardinals — owner Bill Bidwill, president Michael Bidwill, general manager Rod Graves, coach Ken Whisenhunt and director of player personnel Steve Keim — stopped in Missouri to have dinner with Gabbert Tuesday night and then worked him out this morning. Does it mean Gabbert’s the guy at No. 5? Of course not. I’d guess this isn’t the only workout planned for the top-echelon players. But clearly, Gabbert is in the mix for consideration.

Kiper talks draft possibilities for the Cards -
For the Arizona Cardinals there has been much talk on who to draft with the fifth overall draft pick in the 2011 NFL Draft. Draft a defensive player or draft a quarterback.

Audio Player - Texas A&M Linebacker Von Miller
The top linebacker in the nation, Von Miller, joins Gambo & Ash to talk about his preparations for the NFL Draft as well as if he would like to play for the Cardinals.

Why NFL playoff re-seeding died so quietly - NFC West Blog - ESPN
The disgust was palpable when James Carville's favorite division dared to offer up a 2010 champion with a losing record. "Has there ever been a better argument for the NFL to switch to a seeded-tournament postseason?" ESPN's Gregg Easterbrook asked.

NFL was already seeing diminished returns - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Marty Callinan of ESPN Stats & Information has passed along helpful information regarding the NFL's recently adopted rules changes regarding kickoffs. All agree the measure will produce additional touchbacks. Here's the thing, though: Touchbacks have been on the rise, anyway, as the chart illustrates.

Could new rules actually help returners? - NFC West Blog - ESPN
One of the better special-teams players in the NFL thinks new rules affecting kickoffs will produce more long returns and better offensive field position. Fullback Michael Robinson, who signed with the Seattle Seahawks last season after four years with the San Francisco 49ers, offered his thoughts via Twitter in response to my earlier item suggesting rules changes could limit returners.

Phoenix Coyotes top St. Louis Blues at home
The grit and toughness of Lauri Korpikoski never have been questioned in his two years with the Coyotes - he'd willingly take on a 100-mph puck to make a play. As this season goes along, he keeps finding more ways to contribute. Korpikoski turned in one of his top efforts of the season Tuesday night, scoring the game-winning goal as the Coyotes grabbed a 2-1 win over the St. Louis Blues in front of 10,977 at Arena.

Phoenix Suns rally but suffer tough loss to Los Angeles Lakers
If the playoffs don't include the Suns, they might be missing out on some fun. The same Suns that have disappointed you with mediocrity can thrill you against teams of superiority, once again doing so Tuesday night at Staples Center with an incredible triple-overtime effort that entertained but ultimately left the Suns with fewer grains in their playoff hourglass. The Suns' 139-137 loss to the Lakers, who are 13-1 since the All-Star break, leaves the Suns three games behind eighth-place Memphis with 13 games to play, including another Wednesday night at home against Toronto. blogs - Dan Bickley - Suns shine in Loss Angeles
The Suns made us proud on Tuesday, roaring back in Los Angeles and lasting three overtimes against the Lakers. Wonder what Jalen Rose thought about Grant Hill's clutch three-pointer at the end of regulation? The loss was costly. It could mean the difference between making and missing the playoffs entirely, and that would be symbolic. After all, the Suns' run as a championship-caliber team effectively ended in Los Angeles last year, in a Game 5 that deserved overtime. This time, it was the same outcome in Loss Angeles, but a game that countered much of the long-term pessimism on Planet Orange. news: Will talent conquer character concerns for Mallett, Smith?
The NFL's emphasis on player conduct in recent years has changed the way that scouts and coaches evaluate draft prospects.

Mayock: Von Miller’s antitrust involvement won’t hurt draft stock | ProFootballTalk
Talent trumps everything.

Football's New Kickoff Rule, And Why The NFL Can't Win -
The owners voted to move kickoffs to the 35-yard-line this week, which means a lot more touchbacks and many fewer highlights from guys like Devin Hester. All in the name of player safety. So why is everyone complaining?

Dallas Cowboys' Dez Bryant gets criminal trespass warning - ESPN Dallas
Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant was given a criminal trespass warning from off-duty police officers at a Dallas shopping mall Saturday.

Roger Goodell says replacement players 'not in our plans' - ESPN
Owners haven't talked about using replacement players if the NFL's first work stoppage since 1987 stretches on, commissioner Roger Goodell said Tuesday, and the league might not keep its last contract offer on the table if bargaining doesn't resume soon.

Rex Ryan says dad Buddy Ryan again fighting cancer - ESPN
Former NFL head coach and influential defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan is again battling cancer, his son Rex told the New York Daily News on Tuesday.

Seahawks not playing down their interest in Kevin Kolb - Don Banks -
Dispatches from the coaches Tuesday media breakfast at the NFL's annual meeting, during which, lo and behold, some actual football talk transpired....