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Arizona Cardinals training camp: Observations from Monday's practice in pads

Just a bit of what I saw while at practice.

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Arizona Cardinals put on pads for the first time in training camp and practiced for the fans -- noticeably less fans than over the weekend.

As has been the case, John Brown was the star. He scored on an 80-yard touchdown play against Justin Bethel.

Now for my observations:

1. In terms of injuries, Dan Williams did not practice, as was expected. He has some swelling in his knee. Tight end Jake Ballard was back at practice, though. He missed Sunday with a thigh bruise. Center Lyle Sendlein left practice with a calf injury. We won't know much more than that until tomorrow when Bruce Arians addresses the media after the team's morning walkthrough.

2. In terms of personnel, for the second day in a row, it was Sam Acho standing in for John Abraham (still absent for personal reasons) instead of Alex Okafor. Christian Tupou was the nose tackle in place of Dan Williams.

3. The tackle eligible jumbo package showed up. I thought when Troy Niklas was drafted that perhaps the team wouldn't go with that, using Niklas as the jumbo tight end. Well, on Monday, Bradley Sowell was used  for a few plays as a tackle eligible. When he was in Indy in 2012, Arians used him that way as well.

4. Your daily kicking update! Chandler Catanzaro had today off, as Jay Feely and Danny Hrapmann kicked. Feely was 4/5, missing from 33 yards and hitting from 45, 46 and 48 yards (48 yards twice). Hrapmann was 3/5. He hit from 33, 45 and 46 yards. He missed from 48 and also missed in the two minute drill to end practice from around 52 yards. He was supposed to have another attempt from 48, but the snap was botched and holder Dave Zastudil ended up attempting a pass. It was a fantastic throw down the field that tackle Kevin Palmer caught (a great play). It might have gone for a touchdown.

5. Cornerback Eddie Whitley intercepted two passes. You don't know who he is? He was signed this offseason.

6. Tight end John Carlson continues to look great. He just needs to stay healthy. However, after making a nice catch down the field, he had the ball punched out by Sam Acho.

7. John Brown looked great and there were another couple of plays where Ted Ginn showed where his speed will be so fun to watch.

8. In pads, Kareem Martin showed up. He blew  up a running play at the goalline. In kickoff coverage, he completely leveled linebacker Keenan Clayton.

9. Rob Housler made plays. In the two minute drill at the end of practice, he made a very nice catch down the field in the seam to get the offense into the red zone and then, on the next play, scored the touchdown.

10. In the two minute drill, the first team defense stopped the first team offense twice on downs. The second team offense scored on the Housler touchdown and then missed a 52-yard field goal to end practice.

11. With pads came blocking drills. I watched the tight ends and running backs take on linebackers. Running back Robert Hughes put several guys on the ground. Andre Ellington showed he needs to improve. Stepfan Taylor and Jonathan Dwyer did well. John Carlson held up, as did Rob Housler. Troy Niklas showed that he has a little work to do in pass blocking and Jake Ballard appeared to do the least well.

12. We saw kick return drills for the first time. Ted Ginn, John Brown and Reggie Dunn were the three main guys. Patrick Peterson and Antonio Cromartie also returned a few, but that isn't serious. I think they get bored.

13. Peterson must get really bored at the start of practice with special teams drills. He returned some kicks, he did dropback footwork with the quarterbacks, caught passes from the QBs and even worked on sideline catches and over the shoulder catches. He also ran kickoff coverage.

That's what I got for now. Did you see or hear anything else?