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  • Arizona Cardinals to host two more blood drives at State Farm Stadium
    by Seth Cox on March 30, 2020 at 11:05 pm

    Photo by Ric Tapia/Icon SMI/Corbis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images After an overwhelming response to a call for blood donations from the state, the Arizona Cardinals are holding two more blood drives next week. From the team: To meet the continued critical demand for blood donations, the Arizona Cardinals are partnering with Anheuser-Busch to host two blood drives next week at State Farm Stadium in conjunction with the American Red Cross. Next week’s drives will take place on Tuesday and Wednesday, April 7th and 8th from 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM but space is limited and appointment reservations are required. “The response to the call for blood donations has been incredible but so is the need,” said Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill. “While the drives at State Farm Stadium help, they can only accommodate so many people. However, blood drives of all sizes are continuing throughout the state and we encourage everyone to visit, locate one near you and donate if you are able.” Blood donation drives are critical and essential health care activities and are exempt from the state’s recent stay-at-home order. The stadium’s size and the event’s operational set-up will also ensure adherence to the necessary physical and social distancing guidelines while still accommodating the greatest possible number of donors. To make that happen, those interested in donating blood must register on-line in advance. Unfortunately, there will be no opportunity to accommodate anyone who has not made an on-line reservation. Registration for appointment times for next week’s drives can be made by visiting and entering sponsor code “Cardinals.” More specific instructions will be provided to individuals when they make their appointments.

  • Memo to Cardinals: Evolve and update your uniforms
    by John Venerable on March 30, 2020 at 6:25 pm

    Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports Kyler Murray takes a not so subtle jab at Arizona’s current gear. Progressive, in football terms, is not normally a word historically associated with the Arizona Cardinals. If anything, the Cardinals have been well behind league trends which has absolutely hampered them in their pursuit of a Lombardi trophy. Targeting retread coaches and older players has long been a running joke associated with Arizona. From Emmitt Smith to Sam Bradford, Dennie Green and Mike McCoy, the Cardinals are not normally trend setters in the NFL. Generally they are playing catchup. Which was why their decision to pivot off Josh Rosen after his lone rookie season in favor of Kyler Murray was so refreshing (given the benefit of hindsight). Another move that has since drawn praise was the hiring of head coach Kliff Kingsbury as opposed to that of Adam Gase (retread). Kingsbury was plucked straight from the collegiate ranks while Gase had a sample of NFL success as a head coach. Arizona has also benefited from an increase in analytics within their scouting department, which earned rave reviews following their 2019 draft class. Yes, their 2019 season still saw the redbirds finish below .500 but renewed excitement within the Cardinals has only been fueled by a slew of savvy offseason moves by General Manager Steve Keim. Hello Mr. Hopkins. NFL Network’s Peter Schrager even predicted Arizona as a preferred destination for players way back in early February. With all of this excitement and optimism surrounding the Arizona Cardinals, perhaps the team can pivot to another feature that has plagued the Cardinals and their fanbase for years. The team uniforms. The Arizona Cardinals have had their current set of uniforms since 2005, a year before opening what is now known as State Farm Stadium. For the time, the uniforms were a welcomed change from the standard set that then sported the Arizona state flag. However, time has not been kind to Arizona’s current set of uniforms as they are often ranked near the bottom when compared to their 31 NFL counterparts. Following the 2009 season, the Cardinals added an alternative black jersey that seemingly allowed for a grace period while we all awaited whole sale changes. While the addition was welcomed, the black jersey itself doesn’t really fit the rest of what remains from the ensemble they debuted back in 2005. This blurb via Bleacher Reports’ “Worst Uniforms in the History of Every NFL Team” says it all: “The problem with the entire set is that it clearly doesn’t match. The cardinal bird itself has red feathers. Only a little part of its head has black. Other than that, black doesn’t really fit. The helmet looks out of place with the entire uniform set.” As we sit here in 2020, with a new era of Cardinal football upon us, it’s clear that Michael Bidwill and company need to make a statement. A statement that alludes excitement in the form of a complete overhaul of their current Sunday attire. But don’t listen to me, rather, take it from the team’s NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year starting quarterback: Here’s the video— CardsAvenue (@CardsAvenue) March 29, 2020 Does that only include the jersey and pants? I’m not sure. I for one appreciate the look of the all white helmet but am open to anything at this point. Adapt or die. It’s been 15 years. Arizona does not have the benefit of a “classic look” like that of the Steelers, Cowboys or Packers. NFL royalty earns that because of their long history of success, something that does not follow our Cardinals. Now you could argue that, in their current group of uniforms , Arizona has had the most success ever in franchise history. And you wouldn’t be wrong. Since 2005, the Cardinals only have seven losing seasons while capturing multiple division titles and a NFC Championship. The bar was raised by Michael Bidwill during that period, and kudos to him for making that happen. It’s time to raise the bar again. Similar to what the Seattle Seahawks did in 2012 when they were ushering in a new era of football that included an exciting young rookie quarterback, they overhauled their uniforms. What followed in 2013 was their first Super Bowl title. This didn’t discredited what other eras in Seahawk history had done ala their 2005 Super Bowl appearance. What it did do was signify a new era that was brimming with promise. The Cardinals need to follow suit. Now is the time to adapt. Now is the time to upgrade. Perhaps a Super Bowl title will follow.

  • Mocking Monday: 2020 NFL Mock Draft has the Arizona Cardinals protecting Kyler Murray
    by Seth Cox on March 30, 2020 at 4:00 pm

    Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images It is Monday which means it is time to mock another 2020 NFL Draft. This week it is from CBS Sports and veteran NFL Writer Pete Prisco who is making some picks that may have you scratching your head. Let’s run through his top seven: Joe Burrow Chase Young Derrick Brown Andrew Thomas Tua Tagovailoa Justin Herbert Jeff Okudah 8. Arizona Cardinals - Jedrick Wills Jr. ALABAMA • JR • 6’4” / 312 LBS They have a glaring hole at right tackle and Wills played there for the Crimson Tide. He would be a plug-and-play guy. Wills is becoming quite the commodity and frequent flyer in these mock drafts. It makes sense from a strategy standpoint, as one of the weakest starting position is likely the right tackle. Of course then you get into the conversation of need versus best player available and it will become a thing with the names left on the board. Prisco is an old school football guy and that is reflected in his mock. Brown at three, Thomas at four, Wills at eight, Becton at nine, Cesar Ruiz in the first, Ezra Cleveland in the top 20. So, there is quite a bit to dissect but Wills at eight makes sense, but how much sense with the way the board falls is the question.

  • Big WR Questions for Cardinals
    by Walter Mitchell on March 30, 2020 at 2:05 pm

    Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports The mere vision of the Cardinals trotting out a spread offense where the 4 WRs across the formation are, in order of left to right: Hopkins—-Kirk—-Fitzgerald—-Lamb has me as euphoric as I was when I heard that the Beatles were coming to Shea Stadium in 1965. Heck, I even like the backup band of Butler—-Isabella—-Arnold—-Johnson. Oh and I am still of the belief that Trent Sherfield is a dang good WR—-same with A.J. Richardson—-and I am not sleeping for one second on the speedy Johnny Dixon, as long as he hands over his #10 jersey to Nuk. I have been (and still remain) in 100% favor of CeeDee Lamb's talent and the fact that Kyler Murray has been asking the Cardinals to draft him. But, in light of the DeAndre Hopkins trade—-three significant questions have come to mind with regard to the Cardinals still drafting Lamb in the 1st round. With only 1 football—-how could Kingsbury and Murray keep all 4 WRs happy? If it comes across that Kyler is playing slight favorites with Lamb, how would that sit for Fitz, Nuk, and C-Kirk? How would having 4 stud WRs affect the happy medium that Kingsbury and Kugler created between their 10 personnel (4 WR, 1 RB) and their 12 personnel (2 TEs. 1 RB) which caters more favorably to the running/play action scheme? I would love to hear your answers to those questions. My responses are: Winning is often a panacea—-in other words—-it can keep everyone happy. Fitz is such a great teammate. He gets just as excited (if not more) for his teammates’ success as his own. The others could easily follow suit. But if the team is not winning, then most or all of the WRs are apt to want the ball more. I am pretty confident that Kyler would be sensitive to a possible perception of him favoring CeeDee to a degree—-but come game time last year, Kyler appeared to be more honed in on feeding the veterans, than he did on the rookies. That could still be the case, although it would be difficult to do given CeeDee’s talent. We have yet to see how explosive the K-Raid 10 personnel can be when the team has the optimal personnel for it. it’s entirely possible that if the 10 personnel is clicking on all cylinders, then the Cardinals red zone struggles of 2019 could be dashed as quickly as a nifty fade pass to the corner of the end zone—-or—-some dazzling home run passes up the sidelines or to the deep posts. For the Cardinals’ offense or any other—-what is the ultimate object? The ultimate object is to score as many points as possible. If the 10 personnel allows that to happen, then the Cardinals should roll with it as much as Kingsbury wants and keep the pedal on the metal. At this point, I think the Cardinals have the WR talent to put up big points. However... I understand that this could be Fitz’s last season and that C-Kirk has two years left on his rookie deal. Thus, drafting a brilliant talent like CeeDee Lamb and ensuring that Kyler Murray has a one-two punch of DeAndre Hopkins and CeeDee Lamb in place for the next 4 years is very appealing. It’s also very appealing to know that by taking CeeDee Lamb, he won’t be wearing a 49ers’ uniform for the next 5 years—-as shown in Joe Marino’s (The Draft Network) latest mock draft—-check out the photo of Lamb as a 49er: Ugh. That sight makes me shudder. I have to admit—I am still very emotionally attached to the thought of CeeDee Lamb catching TD passes from Kyler Murray for the next 4-5 years. Doing anything and everything to put Kyler Murray in a comfort zone in Arizona is a-ok with me. As we know, the 49ers got Nick Bosa picking right behind us—-and to a degree, that stung. Therefore, just imagine what it would feel like in this draft to see the 49ers pull CeeDee Lamb out of their hat. However, I am of the firm belief that the Cardinals got the better of the 49ers in the 2019, because i have no doubt that if the 49ers had had the #1 pick, Kyle Shanahan would have pounced on Kyler Murray. I cannot fathom Kyle Shanahan passing on a talent as unique as Kyler Murray. After Shanahan lost Jimmy Garoppolo to injury in 2018—-there was a level of concern about him—-and to this day, even though Garoppolo led the 49ers to the Super Bowl, there remains some doubt about Garoppolo as their long-term QB. I think that if the Cardinals take CeeDee Lamb at #8, that is likely to kickstart a quick run on WRs and basically shut the 49ers out of the top three where they pick at #13. It would be easy to envision the Jets taking Jerry Jeudy at #11 and the Raiders taking Henry Ruggs at #12, right under the 49ers’ noses. I cherish that thought. Even if they get Jeudy or Riggs—-it won’t hurt nearly as much. But seeing them fawn over CeeDee Lamb would be agonizing. Basically, what to comes down to is—-do we want Kliff Kingsbury to have more dynamic playmakers than Kyle Shanahan (and Sean McVay and Pete Carroll, for that matter)? Ergo—-having answered why I think the three questions above are not something to be overly concerned about—-I find myself left pondering one nagging, persistent question: Which team would be better off with CeeDee Lamb: the Cardinals or the 49ers? For me—-the answer has become as simple as that. How about for you?

  • Arizona Cardinals 2020 offseason week two wrap up
    by Seth Cox on March 30, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images It’s been quite the free agency frenzy for the Arizona Cardinals. They shocked the NFL world, trading for one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. Then they set out and filled three of their biggest need positions on defense with young talent. From there, it was all about keeping some of the depth talent they created last year and you have a nice offseason in a time of uncertainty. Jess and I sat down and talked about all of that and more in this week’s episode of the Rise Up, See Red Podcast. Enjoy the show and make sure to subscribe to it and give it a five-star rating. Here are the topics and approximate times for them. (1:15) Intros and initial reactions (3:05) The DeAndre Hopkins trade (31:32) The Jordan Phillips signing (43:41) The De’Vondre Campbell signing (52:14) The Devon Kennard signing (1:04:33) The players the Cardinals have re-signed (1:17:55) The players who signed elsewhere and what move the Cardinals still need to make


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