Training camp looks much different this year due to COVID-19, but it won't mean a reprieve from rookie initiation for the Cardinals' first-year players.
Within the next couple of weeks, each rookie will step up to the mic and belt out a song, much to the chagrin of the those who can't carry a tune, and much to the delight of everyone else.
"It may be from a more distanced approach and not quite as intimate of a setting, but we'll definitely find a way to make them prove their singing skills at some point or another," coach Kliff Kingsbury said on Cards Camp Central.
Running back Chase Edmonds is hoping for an uptick in performance after an underwhelming effort from the 2019 crop.
"Last year, it was terrible," Edmonds said. "It was awful. Those guys really didn't bring it at all. K1 (Kyler Murray) did a decent job and Deionte Thompson did a pretty good job, but it was pretty bad. Hopefully they set the standard this year and make something happen."
Edmonds hopes initiation night includes duties beyond the singing.
"I'm a skit guy myself," Edmonds said. "Whether you re-enact a certain coach on the team or something like that, that gets the guys going."
Kingsbury vividly remembers the initiation he received as a rookie with the Patriots in 2003, back when the youngsters had it worse.
"I sang 'Friends In Low Places' by Garth Brooks, and then I got the shaved head and the lines in the eyebrow from (Tom) Brady," Kingsbury said. "The eyebrow doesn't grow back – I don't know if you've ever done that – it doesn't grow back for a long time. So I was looking real sketchy for about eight months there in Boston."
While the singing is a rite of passage, Edmonds is sure to communicate that it's all in good fun. He said the Cardinals have really good chemistry this season, and he wants the rookies to feel included.
"I always try to talk to guys," Edmonds said. "If I see someone sitting alone at the lunch table, I'll invite them over to the Three Amigos table – me, Trent (Sherfield) and (Christian) Kirk."