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Bonding Through Golf

Posted May 6, 2013

Players take advantage of Cardinals' annual charity tournament

Center Lyle Sendlein celebrates finding his ball in the rough Monday at the Cardinals' annual charity golf tourney. For a photo gallery, click here.

It didn’t take long for Jerraud Powers to dust off his golf game in Arizona.

Less than a week after he signed with the Cardinals, Powers was on a course with Patrick Peterson, playing 18 and getting to know his new teammate. A day later, Powers was on the course again, soaking in the sun with Drew Stanton, who, like Powers, was a former Indianapolis Colt who signed with the Cardinals.

The links have been just another way the newest Cardinals have gelled with their returning teammates and meeting each other.

“Golf is the perfect sport for it because none of us are professionals at it so we can just go out here and be ourselves have fun with it,” Powers said.

Golf again helped the Cardinals mesh Monday at the Cardinals Charities Celebrity Golf Classic at the Whirlwind Golf Club. More than 140 golfers played in the 18-hole scramble on the Cattail and Devil’s Claw courses. Each foursome was paired with a player or coach. Best ball won.

Kicker Jay Feely’s foursome claimed the event with a 20-under par 52.

Offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin’s group was second with a 53, quarterback Carson Palmer’s foursome was third with a 55 and long snapper Mike Leach’s quartet was fourth with a 56.

Leach has been one of the team’s most avid golfers, so Monday was a chance to interact with sponsors and talk a little smack with his teammates.

He was among the welcoming party that greeted Palmer with a golf outing the week after the quarterback was traded from the Oakland Raiders.

“You get to know a lot about a person by how they play golf -- How they handle adversity, how much pressure they put on themselves when things are on the line and how they respond,” Leach said. “He’s been great. He seems like a good guy, laid back and he’s competitive.”

The event was a chance for new Cardinals with the golf itch to see a new course.

Powers started playing after he was drafted in 2009 and quickly got hooked. He knew moving to Arizona would mean plenty of good courses and teammates who played a lot. And he wasn’t disappointed.

Monday also gave a chance for veteran newbies to swing some clubs.

Peterson’s foursome eagled the Par 5 seventh hole on the Cattail course. Defensive end Calais Campbell, who stands 6-foot-8, played Monday, but with clubs well below his reach.

“I think I would be pretty good if I had my own clubs but since I’m playing with short man’s clubs it’s not very fun -- I mean, it’s fun, but I’m not very good,” he said with a laugh.

There’s a group of Cardinals who play often, and then there’s a group who doesn’t, and Monday was one of a handful of times – if that – they hit the links every year.

Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald joked he hasn’t improved in the nine years he’s played but still enjoyed taking a few hacks. General Manager Steve Keim hasn’t played in five years but that didn’t stop him from teeing off.

“Fortunately or unfortunately, when you have four children under the age of 7 rarely do I get time to go out and relax and hit the golf course,” Keim said. “But it’s always a fun event.”

 

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