Arizona Cardinals playing for their jobs (BLOG)

After months of speculation, we've finally seen a Bruce Arians practice. And frankly, it wasn't a whole lot different than the one's we've watched before it.

Football is football! Quarterbacks throw the ball, receivers catch it; running backs run with it and defenders try to stop them; and lineman block and tackle just like they've done for decades.

But what you may not have seen at Friday's first practice is the attitude and intensity of the practice. The team ran more plays than a typical first practice of training camp and the players just aren't feeling too safe about their roster spot.

After practice, offensive tackle, Levi Brown told me even his job is on the line and he knows it. The team's first round draft pick in 2007 is concerned for his job and knows he has to perform at a high level to keep his roster spot.

Now that's something you won't be able to see from the stands. Players concerned for their jobs, knowing that every drill, every snap and every play is being videotaped, graded and scored. And it's those grades throughout training camp that will determine the players' future with the Cardinals.

I know what you're thinking: isn't that the case for every player in the NFL? In most cases, yes! But the reality this season is that everything is new, from the General Manager to the coaching staff and the venue for training camp. Nothing is the same in Arizona. For a number of seasoned veterans across the league, there is some job security. They know that they're the best at their position and other than a serious injury, they know they'll be on the roster at the end of the season.

But Bruce Arians has his first head coaching job in the NFL and he's not taking it lightly. Make no mistake about it, the new coach wants to win and he wants to win now! Oh, and trust me on this one, he realizes that the NFC West is the toughest division in the NFC. You can't take any shortcuts if you expect to beat the Niners or the Seahawks. You know it and he knows it!

So Arians has come in with a "show me" kind of attitude like they have in Missouri! And guess what? His players know that he's not cutting them any slack. Arians said today that all 22 positions are up for grabs and he said it for a reason. He actually believes it and he's convinced his players that he means it.

So enjoy practices this summer, but remember, the players are playing for their professional football lives and that's kind of refreshing here in Arizona!

Print this article Back to Top