St. Louis Rams: Pre-training camp Q&A with the Arizona Cardinals

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Jun 9, 2015; Tempe, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals cornerback Justin Bethel (28) runs drills during minicamp practice at the Cardinals Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Scott Allen of our Arizona Cardinals site,, took some time to answer some questions about the Cardinals leading up to training camp.

The Cardinals will be the team to beat in the NFC West for the Rams this year. With the consensus being that the Seattle Seahawks are poised of yet another division title, St. Louis will battle it out with Arizona in hopes of a wild card spot. Check out some of responses below!

Carson Palmer was lights out when he was healthy last year. However, after he went down with the knee injury against the Rams that was it for the Cardinals. Whats the back up QB situation like there, and how have they addressed the lack of depth?

"It is going to look a lot like it did in 2014 with Drew Stanton as the number two behind Palmer.  Third string will look a little different.  No Ryan Lindley, but Logan Thomas is still in the mix.  Thomas is going to be challenged by Chandler Harnish and Phillip Sims.  Harnish is a product out of Northern Illinois.  He spent some time with the Colts.  Sims is a rookie out of Winston-Salem State."

Andre Ellington has been less than spectacular in his first two years. How do the Cardinals plan to attack the running game this year and is Ellington still part of the big picture?

"Ellington actually looked very good in his rookie season and many expected him to break out in 2014, but he got injured.  He spent the whole season with a foot injury then ended up with a hernia that ended his season at the end of November.  He never practiced in full at any point last season, which was detrimental to him on Sunday’s when he was able to play.  Ellington is still their “guy”.  He will be the starting running back.  However this year the Cardinals drafted a guy, David Johnson, out of Northern Iowa, who is a lot like Ellington.  He is versatile with running and catching the ball.  He is a little bigger than Ellington.  Johnson has about four inches and 25 pounds on him.  The Cardinals will run the ball more and should be much more efficient about it with the addition of guard Mike Iupati from the San Francisco 49ers.  Iupati is one the NFL’s best run blockers."

December 28, 2014; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians (left) talks to quarterback Logan Thomas (6) and quarterback Ryan Lindley (14) during the third quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi

Bruce Arians is making a name for himself as one of  the top coaches in the league. What makes him so great?

"I think with Arians it is all about attitude and personality. Arians gets along with almost everyone.  He will put a player to task on the field and won’t beat around the bush.  If you are good, you stay.  If you can’t play, you’re gone.  It can be tough love but Arians is not a tough guy to play for.  Just do the job you are asked to do and you’ll be fine.  Arians always has great lines for the media and they love him here.  Arians genuinely appears to love being in Arizona as well.  You have to love the job you do in order to succeed.  Arians certainly loves what he does and loves where he is doing it.  He’s been coaching a long time and he’s showing the NFL now they he should have been a head coach a long time ago in this league.  It certainly helps he has some good talent to work with no doubt but look at the stops he’s made in Pittsburgh and Indianapolis most recently before Arizona.  He was an assistant under a couple of really good coaches in their own right."

Do you feel the departure of Todd Bowles will have a lasting effect on a defense that was certainly on the rise last year?

"I think you will see a bit of a transition period after the departure of Bowles but the scheme will remain the same. James Bettcher was an assistant on defense last season so he knows the plan. He knows what Arians likes to see. The defense if anything might get better.  I think the biggest change may be fewer blitzes. Bowles loved blitzing.  You will still see it but I think less of it from the Cardinals this season."