Darnell Dockett is looking forward to seeing his best friend, Antonio Smith, Sunday when the Houston Texans visit. Smith has been long gone from the Cardinals, having left as a free agent to Houston following the 2008 season, but that hasn’t broken the bond between he and Dockett.
“I’m not excited about getting 19 tickets for his family and him calling me every day asking me for keys (to the Cardinals), ‘What’s this guy like, he block like this?’ ” Dockett said. “I tell him nothing. I tell him, ‘I don’t go against our offense, I don’t go against our first offense, I don’t know what they do.’ He’s like, ‘Whatever, whatever.’ ”
Dockett and Smith were part of an exceptional 2004 draft class for the Cardinals. Wide receiver
Fitzgerald and Dockett have spent their careers in Arizona. Dansby left as a free agent, replaced by
“We’ve got three guys on the team still and we get to see Antonio,” Fitzgerald said. “We’re
Smith has already had his return to play the Cardinals in Arizona. The Texans visited in 2009 – a 28-21 Cardinals’ victory – when Smith managed only one tackle. That was before the arrival of dynamic linemate J.J. Watt, however.
There isn’t much left linking Smith and the Cardinals after more than four seasons away.
“They’re all gone,” Smith said. “All it is is Fitz, Dockett, Karlos and then Lyle (Sendlein). Me and Dockett have been talking crap. That’s my brother. We talk all the time. He’s been giving me crap, talking about what they’re going to do. And I’ve been giving him crap.
“I reckon it’s going to be a pretty fun game. He’s pumping his boys up. I’m pumping my boys up. I tell little tall tales here and there, see if I can get some people motivated.”
Smith has turned into an impressive partner with Watt. Cardinals tackle
Dockett acknowledged he wasn’t thrilled when Smith left, although Campbell has proven to be a good choice for Arizona as a replacement. Besides, Smith got the money in Houston he never would have in Arizona.
“I know the saying business is business, Houston took care of him, it’s all love,” Dockett said. “Karlos did it. He happened to come back. Antrel (Rolle) did, DRC, all the guys I was close to. I wish them all well. At some point we’ll all link up again.”
SOWELL READY TO PLAY TACKLE
“There is no such thing as missing classroom time anymore,” Sowell said. With the iPad, “As soon as something happens I can see it right there. Plus I was in their division last year so I’ve faced them twice before.”
Sowell played for the Colts last season.
“He looked fine,” Arians said. “We’ll get more medicine in him and it looked like he was ready to go.”
RUNNING BACK SHUFFLE FOR BOTH TEAMS
Arians confirmed running back
Texans starting running back Arian Foster (back) is out. With Foster down, Ben Tate – who is playing will four cracked ribs – will start at running back for Houston.
BALLARD TO BE ACTIVE
Veteran tight end
Arians said Ballard was “very bright” and picked up the offense quickly. With
The only player out for the Cardinals is wide receiver
Besides Foster, linebacker Mike Mohamed (hamstring) is out for Houston.