Quarterback Sam Bradford is learning the intricacies of every pass-catcher on the Cardinals during training camp, but the most important connection figures to be with Larry Fitzgerald.
Despite entering his age-35 season, Fitzgerald has accumulated more than 100 catches and 1,000 yards in each of the past three years. While there is an open competition going on behind him, Fitzgerald is the clear No. 1 receiver on the team, and the target Bradford could zero in on when key scenarios pop up in games.
Bradford is known for his exceptional accuracy – he set an NFL record by completing 71.6 percent of his passes in 2016 -- which jibes well with Fitzgerald’s ability to haul in the vast majority of catchable throws. The level of separation Fitzgerald gets against a defender may not be as great as it once was, but between his frame and soft hands, the window doesn’t need to be to huge for him to make the reception.
“It just seems like if you get the ball around him where he can get his hands on it, he’s going to make the play,” Bradford said. “You do have to train yourself sometimes. He looks covered, but we see it on film and it’s like, ‘Hey, just give Larry a chance.’ More times than not, he’s going to come down with it. It’s just developing that trust – putting it out there and allowing him to go get it.”