The Cardinals’ strength and conditioning coach, John Lott, is certainly changing things up. Although there’s sand involved, these workouts are no day at the beach. Players work in teams of two, with one running through the sand pits while the other provides resistance with a bungee cord.
Tim Hightower, among others, appreciates the change in the routine. The third year running back explains “we are in the same building every single day, so to get outside, get in a different environment, that’s good. [Workouts] sometimes can psyche you out a little bit so it’s good to try something new.”
The Cardinals not only escape the confines of the training facility, they trek mountains in an effort to prepare themselves for the challenges of the season. What started as a team-building trip for rookies only up local Camelback Mountain has become a mainstay for players like Beanie Wells and Clark Haggans.
Lott’s fresh workout perspective keeps the Cardinals’ players motivated to keep the intensity up during off-season conditioning. Lott’s efforts are certainly appreciated by Hightower, who explains that “training and football is so mental. People think it’s all about being physical but it is so mental. You can’t be so serious all the time. Half the time, your bodies are sore and when you are laughing with the other guys, you forget you are sore even though you’re still out there doing the work. You compete, and you get caught up in the moment. It helps the time go by.”
Apparently not everyone is excited about the off-season program, though. Darnell Dockett is the only signed Cardinal not working out with the team. This isn’t shocking, however, as Dockett didn’t participate last year, but there’s no doubt that Dockett will attend mandatory workouts. Deuce Lutui, restricted free agent guard, still hasn’t signed his tender and therefore is unable to participate in workouts.
- FREE AGENT TIDBITS: The Cardinals hosted two more veteran free agents this week: G Kendall Simmons and S Mike Brown. Darren Urban of the Cards’ official website talked to GM Rod Graves about these visits. Urban explained that “Graves commented that free agency probably was going to be on hold until after the draft, unless the Cards decided to sign some minimum salary guys. I’m not sure Brown and/or Simmons fall into that category, so this may be exploratory based on what happens at the draft.”