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Arizona Cardinals OTAs: Veterans must ensure fast start to practices

Tuesday's practice started slowly after the break.

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Tuesday marked the first session of another set of OTAs (organized team activities) and head coach Bruce Arians was not pleased with how things started.

After practice, Arians sent the message that "every rep matters."

"Knowing that we're coming back after time off, we can't have bad practices," Arians told the team. "It ended up really well, Both sides of the ball were playing hard...but we'd have to play our ass off to win a game today because we were so far behind in the first half by beating ourselves."

Arians indicated it isn't his job to get players practicing right. "That's the veterans' job to make sure we have fast starts to practices when we have time off," he said.

Arians noted "it's easy when we get into the flow," but if the team starts playing well during the season and the team starts getting Mondays off as a result, "you can't have half a bad Wednesday practice, can we? Every rep matters. We can't have bad ones."

This is an urgent year for Arizona. Yes, it is only OTAs. Yes, it is May, but Arians wants to set the tone. Championship teams are focused on every rep of every practice. He wants those young players in that mindset and he wants the team to have that culture.

It was a message to the veterans to make sure they also set the tone when they come after a break, even when it is the offseason and even when there is no contact.

It's a good message for all of us in whatever we do -- days off are days off. When you get back from your days off, it is work time.