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A Little Tight With Tight Ends

Posted Aug 27, 2013

Notebook: Arians "comfortable" with group when Housler healthy; practice in the bubble

The tight ends move over for individual work inside the practice bubble Tuesday.

Bruce Arians isn’t unlike other coaches around the league with his approach toward the preseason.

He kept schemes simple, and most of his packages under lock and key. While he teased a couple of secrets, most notably Patrick Peterson on offense, Arians made sure not to show off Rob Housler.

The tight end will be kept under wraps for a little bit longer.

Housler suffered a high ankle sprain last weekend against the San Diego Chargers, limiting his action this week and leaving his return open-ended. With Jeff King dealing with knee issues, the Cardinals are heading to Denver for the preseason finale – and possibly into the regular season opener – with Jim Dray, Kory Sperry and D.C. Jefferson as their top three tight ends.

Arians added Richard Quinn to that mix Tuesday morning, signing him after releasing Mickey Shuler. Quinn is a five-year veteran who’s caught just one pass in five years, and was signed for his blocking skills.

“He’s a thumper, tight end blocker,” Arians said. “He caught a couple good balls in practice today. So he’s got a chance.”

Arians will call upon his tight ends to block more often than run routes and Housler has been impressive in that role, Arians said. But with King’s knee in flux because of swelling, Arians was looking to beef up the roster.

“I’m comfortable (with the tight ends) with Robby healthy,” Arians said. “I think right now it’s a good group. There’s a good, diverse group of blockers, receivers. They can all catch the ball.

“Robby has the speed factor that the others don’t. I’m pleased with that group.”

ARIANS TO GO WITH GUT ON PALMER

On Monday, quarterback Carson Palmer didn't know if he would play Thursday at Denver.

A day later, Arians said he won’t make any decision until the night before the game.

“I probably won’t decide it until we get to Denver,” Arians said. “Just gut feeling.”

UNDER THE DOME

The Cardinals held their first full practice in their new bubble Tuesday.

“It was OK,” defensive end Calais Campbell said. “It was not bad. There’s not a lot of space in there but it definitely keeps the heat out.”

With temperatures exceeding 104 degrees, the bubble helped the Cardinals prepare for the cooler temperatures they’ll experience in Denver. And it helped the team’s newest member acclimate himself to Arizona summers.

“I got spirit today,” Quinn said with a laugh. “I’m ready to get out there in that heat and get adjusted and play football.”

Campbell said wherever Arians decides to practice is fine. The bubble has its perks, yet so does practicing outside.

“Practice inside keeps the sun off your back a little bit but practice outside, it’s better to be on the grass than the turf,” Campbell said. “So everything has its benefits. Just kind of depends on the day.”


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