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Sorting tight ends at camp

What makes training camp so intriguing isn't necessarily the battle for starting spots, because that happens somewhat infrequently. It's the battle for roster spots, because as you get away from the starting 22 (and some key reserves), it always opens up possibilities of other factors – salary, for one, or whether a guy might have bigger long-term upside even if he isn't quite as good as the guy he's "beating out."

I'm curious to see where the tight end situation ends up. In many ways, Ben Patrick's suspension is a big win for the tight ends in the short term, because I'd think it means the Cards will keep an extra tight end, at least until Patrick is reinstated. We'll see where Stephen Spach is to start camp coming off his knee injury (Coach Ken Whisenhunt said the health of players won't be known for sure until physicals Wednesday morning but that "I don't anticipate we will have a lot of limitations going in."). We'll see how Anthony Becht does after a decade in the league (as a veteran TE, Jerame Tuman never quite panned out last season). And there's a big question of whether Dominique Byrd can actually regain a foothold in the NFL. Leonard Pope has a fairly big $1-plus million contract (which is not guaranteed), so if he isn't better than others, does that affect his status? That's one of the reasons it's hard to know what the Cards' cap status will be going into the season because we don't know how the roster will shake out.

That's what camp is for, though, right? I'll be on my way to Flag at this time Wednesday.

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