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Punt Catching Fun, And (A Light) Camp Practice Aftermath

Butler becomes latest Cardinal to sit out

You know it's a low-key day at practice when the thing that catches the attention the most was the returners seeing how many balls they could hold on to at one time after multiple punts. But that's where the Cardinals were Friday, a day after a heavy padded practice Thursday and the annual Red & White practice – which should be physical – Saturday. All the team work was half-speed, as the Cards did slightly more than a walkthrough.

The punt return thing was fun to watch. Christian Kirk managed to secure six before the seventh caused him to fall down backward and drop a couple. Is there a record, Kliff Kingsbury?

"I asked that question," Kingsbury said. "Patrick Peterson got seven. But apparently he tucked one under his jersey and there could be some gray area there."

(I noticed JoJo Ward did the tucking under at one point too today, but such is training camp. I actually remember P2's seven one day. It was a feat.)

-- There wasn't a lot of high-intensity stuff on the field. But there were still injuries to note, even if we, of course, don't know exactly what those injuries are. Wide receiver Rondale Moore, who left practice Thursday, wasn't out there, and neither was cornerback Malcolm Butler. Kingsbury said both had similar minor issues. Defensive lineman Jordan Phillips, who has been out a week, should be back "sometime in the near future," Kingsbury said. Wide receiver A.J. Green remained out.

-- Defensive lineman Zach Allen wasn't out there either, but Corey Peters was on the field for the first time, and wide receiver Christian Kirk participated in practice fully. But it was noteworthy when Kingsbury was asked about guard Brian Winters' return, the coach said he wasn't sure "but before the season gets started." Which, since the season is still more than a month away, seems like it could be a little more serious.

-- Kingsbury noted that Pro Bowl jerseys will be handed out to players, per tradition, from Michael Bidwill at the Red & White practice. Also, "I'll give another rousing speech pregame," Kingsbury deadpanned. "That's a can't miss."

-- Green had noted earlier in camp that DeAndre Hopkins was willing to switch sides on a play if Green had a route he wanted to run. Kingsbury said he wasn't surprised. "Hop wants to win. He's at that point in his career. You watch how he interacts with the young players, the coaches, he's all about winning at this point."

So, Kliff was asked, you don't have an issue if receivers want to swap jobs on a play? "Those two, whoever is running the route between A.J. Green and DeAndre Hopkins, I'm going to be happy with," Kingsbury said.

WR Christian Kirk
WR Christian Kirk