With Bruce Arians, the Arizona Cardinals have taken on a new practice culture, one that some might not agree with.
He explained at the conclusion of mini-camp that the team does not stretch as a team, which had been the long standing practice. As he explained, "Get yourself ready to go, horn blows, we're practicing."
This makes sense. The CBA limits the amount of practice time teams can have. Arians would rather the team be practicing during that time.
However, that doesn't mean that he ignores the need for stretching. "I think our guys learned about soft tissue injuries," he said. "We have very, very few soft tissue injuries."
That is notable, although it will be interesting to see how this goes once the pads go on and contact begins.
He did downplay the need for stretching a bit with this quip: "I know this -- if a guy starts chasing you with a gun, you're not going to stretch."
Thus far, the team has been very fortunate. There have been a couple of tight hamstrings, Jeff King had knee surgery and Ryan Swope still is not practicing with alleged concussion symptoms.
But injuries are a part of football, and the coaches worry.
"You cross your fingers every day," said Arians. "You read in the paper this guy tore his ACL, this guy blew an Achilles and you just hope and pray that's not going to happen to your football team. And we were very fortunate."
Can they stay healthy through training camp, the preseason and the season? That could ultimately be the determining factor in how much success the team has.
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