Reddick understands much of this weekend is about

Posted On Aug 11 2019 by

first_imgReddick understands much of this weekend is about the coaches throwing as much as they can at players in an effort to see who can learn quickly and improve their game.“To see who’s really going home and studying, who really wants to be here,” he said. “You get to weed out who’s just out here and who’s seriously trying to make a living.”Though his roster spot is not exactly up for debate, Reddick plants himself squarely in the latter group. He is trying to be a leader on the field because, as he said, it is his job, both as a middle linebacker and a first-round draft pick.He won’t get it all down in one practice, but with his first on-field experience as a Cardinal in the books, the former Temple star is pleased.“Very nice, just to see how things are going to go, what’s being expected of you, what’s the tempo like, what mistakes you’re making,” he said. “So that you can try to come back and correct them the next day.”Impressive startsOverall, Arians said on Friday he was very impressed with his group, with the team’s draft choices as well as some undrafted free agents and tryout players catching his eye. “Larry, from Colorado State Pueblo, wide receiver — I gotta get his last name yet — but I learned his first name already, so that’s a really good thing.“And Carlton, from Rutgers, looked really good; the two wideouts. A couple of the corners broke on balls really well. Budda (Baker) showed his ball skills.”The “Larry” Arians was referring to is Larry Clark (pictured), a 6-foot-3, 182-pound player who is in town on a tryout. In five games for the ThunderWolves last season, he caught 22 passes for 248 yards and four touchdowns.Taking a look for down the roadOne of the more interesting players in rookie camp is Air Force linebacker Ryan Watson.Practicing on a tryout basis, even if the coaches are impressed and the Cardinals would like to keep him around, he could not join the team for another two years.According to a rule handed down in late April by the United States Air Force to the Academy, all cadets must serve two years of active duty before they earn “ready reserve” status, at which point they could enter professional sports.“I think it’s dumb,” Arians said of the rule.Be that as it may, Watson, who notched 99 career tackles along with 16 sacks, one pass breakup, one forced fumble and a fumble recovery, could not possibly suit up for the Cardinals — or any other team — until 2019. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Top Stories Arizona Cardinals first round draft pick Haason Reddick works out during an NFL football rookie minicamp at the team’s training facility, Friday, May 12, 2017, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York) TEMPE, Ariz. — About this time last year, Robert Nkemdiche’s first practice of rookie minicamp raised some eyebrows.As you might recall, afterwards Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said the first-round pick “was killing people in walk-through” and was “bench-pressing linemen already.”For a variety of reasons, that did not foreshadow a dominant initial campaign for the defensive lineman.center_img “Like always, I’ll only answer questions about guys on our team,” the coach said. “So you can put the pen away. If the guy’s not on our team, don’t ask me a question.”And that was that.Follow Adam Green on Twitter Comments   Share   As he told ESPN.com’s Josh Weinfuss, having to wait will be very tough, but he pointed out that he went to the United States Air Force Academy, so the easy road is not one he is familiar with anyway.“Oh, it’s definitely a tease,” he said. “But I’d rather be here than not be here, so I’m blessed to have the opportunity. I will never be upset coming in here and leaving.”At this point, Watson is trying to soak it all in while the Cardinals and their coach are just hoping to learn more about him.“Just give him a good look and give him the opportunity, he’s earned it,” Arians said. “I love working with the service guys and giving them that chance.“And you never know, they’ll impress you enough that you’ll think about them two years from now.”One final thought — sort of — on Daryl WashingtonYou knew it was going to come up.After the Cardinals surprisingly released recently-reinstated linebacker Daryl Washington on Thursday, Friday was the first chance to ask any of the team’s decisionmakers about what transpired.Expecting it, Arians pivoted mid-point while talking about players who impressed him in rookie camp with a quote most could have anticipated. And, on Friday, a similar occurrence happened with Arizona’s 2017 first-round pick, linebacker Haason Reddick.Playing middle linebacker after primarily being an edge rusher in college, the No. 13 overall pick in the draft caught Arians’ eye.“He tried to make a damn tackle,” Arians said. “And flying across the field and trying to get an interception.“But like I always say, I’d rather say ‘woah’ than ‘sick ’em,’ and he looked natural at the position.”This early, that’s a good sign.Because while pretty much every player on the field this weekend in Tempe is learning a new system, Reddick is at the disadvantage of doing so while at an unfamiliar role in the defense.“It’s very tough, it’s very tough,” he said of learning a new position at the same time as a different defense. “But I’m dedicated. I’m going to be in here watching film, getting in there with Coach (Larry) Foote, making sure that I’m learning.“I’m looking forward to being the biggest impact this season and getting out there and making some plays, so I’m definitely out here and I’m taking it seriously.”last_img read more