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Cardinals Map Out Offseason Dates

Conditioning program starts next week; Minicamps in April and June


Tackle Bobby Massie takes part in the first day of OTAs last offseason.

A new coach means some extra work time for the Cardinals this offseason.

Because it is Bruce Arians' first season, players get to begin the offseason program two weeks early and will get an extra (albeit voluntary) minicamp. For the Cardinals, that work will officially begin Tuesday, when voluntary strength and conditioning sessions with coach John Lott commence.

The extra minicamp comes April 23-25, which coincides with the week of the draft. The first round is the night of April 25. The team's mandatory minicamp will be June 11-13, five practices that will close out the offseason program.

The specifics of FanFest, which is usually held during the mandatory minicamp, have not yet

been announced. The team also has yet to announce where training camp will be held. In between the two minicamps will be a minicamp for rookies and qualifying young players May 10-12, along with 10 dates of organized team activities May 14-16, May 21-23 and June 3-6.

The collective bargaining agreement spells out in detail the rules governing offseason work. Phase One, which is the first two weeks, limits work with Lott and no on-field work with coaches, but football talk with coaches is allowed. The Cardinals are expected to begin classroom work next week along with workouts as Coach Bruce Arians installs his systems.

Phase Two is the next three weeks of the program, including on-field football work with coaches. Phase Three introduces the OTA/minicamp segment of the process. Although the Cardinals get to start earlier, the number of days in the program does not change.

Arians has talked a few times about getting his first chance to talk football with his players, and recently said one of the reasons the Cards moved on from Kevin Kolb was his inability to break down video of Kolb alongside the quarterback to find out why he did or didn't do specific things.

Every day of work aside from the June 11-13 minicamp is voluntary, although with a new staff in place and a prior inability to discuss football, participation figures to be high.

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