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Carson Palmer Now Appreciates Rest Days

Notes: Quarterback preserves body for Sundays; Big hope for Floyd; Fitzgerald limited

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Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer has learned the benefit of skipping Wednesday practice.


The Cardinals haven't played a game since Oct. 30 and didn't practice during their bye week, but quarterback Carson Palmer was still sitting out Wednesday after Tuesday's padded practice.

Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, nursing a sore ankle, ran around a little bit himself, coach Bruce Arians said, but had he been healthy "he wouldn't have practiced."

"Neither one of those guys, Larry and Carson, does much on Wednesdays anymore," Arians said. "That time of year. At their age,

they need rest.

"But don't tell them I said that."

There was a time when Palmer balked at the idea of rest days. Now, "I have learned to appreciate them," he said.  

"You want the reps, you want to be in the huddle, you don't want to be standing around at practice," the 36-year-old Palmer said. "But they are so beneficial. As the season gets going, they go a long way. Just one of them goes a long way.

"I've been a gym rat for so long, greedy with every rep, but I've learned to understand the importance of recovery and rest and sleep and all that. I understand how important it is to feel great Sunday."

Despite the time off, the Cardinals went hard Tuesday. Palmer could've practiced Wednesday, but the idea of four straight hard practices – through Friday – didn't make sense.

"If you are 22, 23, you don't feel it as much on Sunday as the vets on the team do," Palmer said.

PALMER'S CONFIDENCE IN FLOYD

Palmer has defended struggling wide receiver Michael Floyd every time he's been asked this season, and Wednesday was no

different.

Palmer said he doesn't doubt Floyd's confidence, and neither does Floyd.

"I think he's going to explode in the second half," Palmer said. "People have doubted him, said negative things about a couple of individual plays, but that's not Mike. Mike is a game-changing player. Mike is going to make plays that win games for us. I don't know how many, but it's going to be a lot."

OKAFOR, FELLS BACK ON FIELD

Linebacker Alex Okafor (calf) and tight end Darren Fells (ankle) were back at practice on a limited basis Wednesday and are trending toward playing Sunday after missing games. Joining the two – and Fitzgerald – as limited were wide receiver John Brown (hamstring) and defensive tackle Ed Stinson (toe).

Safety Tyrann Mathieu (shoulder) and cornerback Tharold Simon (ankle) did not practice.

For the 49ers, linebacker Aaron Lynch (ankle) and cornerback Rashard Robinson (knee) did not practice. Linebacker Nick Bellore (shoulder), defensive tackle Quinton Dial (knee/neck), defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey (knee), running back Carlos Hyde (knee), center Daniel Kilgore (hamstring) and wide receiver Torrey Smith (back) were limited.

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