ANOTHER TEST FOR HALL
Rookie QB Max Hall passed his first test against the New Orleans Saints but will likely face an even tougher task on the road in Seattle. Qwest Field is known as one of the loudest stadiums in the league and is notorious for wreaking havoc on opposing offenses.
Hall will need help from his offensive line in more ways than one. The Seahawks' pass rush has racked up 17 sacks, good for a tie for sixth in the league. Furthermore, Qwest Field has produced more false start penalties than any other venue in the NFL since 2005. The 112 decibel level produced by the ‘12th man' has been compared to a Boeing 747.
"I've heard it's noisy and it's a fun place to play," Hall said. "I've played in some loud places. I've worked with the silent count before, so it's nothing new."
BACK IN ACTION
The Cardinals hope to welcome back several players this week, starting with wideouts Steve Breaston and Early Doucet. Both players participated in practice Wednesday, but the key will be how they respond throughout the rest of the week.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt admitted both are getting reacquainted with the offense and anticipates some struggles along the way.
"We had all the guys out there working today," Whisenhunt said. "As you would expect, it's going to take some days for them to get their legs back under them."
Arizona's defense has struggled much more than anticipated so far but the return of LB Gerald Hayes should provide a tremendous boost. Hayes practiced on Wednesday but his fate won't be determined until the full week of practice wraps up.
"I think with Gerald it's getting comfortable with the defensive scheme again and I think it's also how he reacts to practice," Whisenhunt said. "Hopefully he'll rapidly progress because we certainly would welcome to having him back playing."
Like several other defenders across the league, LB Joey Porter isn't please with the NFL's recent changes in regards to player safety. Porter had plenty to say on the subject following Wednesday's practice.
"Now you can't even hit anybody hard. Don't hit hard anymore, just tackle. There's no more hitting hard."
Porter cautioned that the ramifications aimed at decreasing concussions will surface elsewhere with other negative results: "Guys are going to miss tackles and you're going to have a lot more knee injuries. You went away from concussions to more torn ACL's."
"You're going to see a lot more points, a lot more guys scared to pull the trigger to make the big play because nobody wants to get fined $50,000, $75,000 for making a tackle."
"A lot of guys are going to start losing their jobs because now you're not making the tackles you're supposed to make. The coach is going to be looking at you like you're turning down the hit."
Porter on the subjective nature of the new guidelines: "Are they saying just big hits is a fine? Who decides whether you're hitting too hard or not? It's not like you're trying to really hurt anybody. But some guys might be able to take that same hit a different way."
"So if it's a little guy and you hit him that same way you hit a guy that's 250 pounds to a guys that's 170 pounds, you hit him that same way, is it the defenders fault because the 170 guy couldn't take the punch? Who makes these judgments of taking the money?"
"We've been preparing to play this game from March. We're out here working out OTAs … so when we get to game day we're ready to play. Now you're telling us how to play. We can't tackle people the way we used to. It doesn't really make any sense."
"Just watch, the game is going to change. It's just going to get crazy … it's going to get real crazy."
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