In a span of five days the Arizona Cardinals will have had to play on the road against the San Francisco 49ers and at home against the Seattle Seahawks. That’s two pivotal divisional matchups for the Cardinals to prepare for in such a short time period.
Cardinals’ head coach Bruce Arians isn’t a fan of the setup.
Arians joined Alex Marvez and Bill Polian on Sirius XM NFL Radio Tuesday to discuss their game with the Seahawks and voiced his displeasure for Thursday night games in general.
“I’m not a fan of Thursday night football,” Arians said.
“I don’t think he’s really fair to the players, especially the veteran players. We finished up most of our game plan and practice today, which would be a normal players’ day off.”
Arians said the team has already had two practices after a hard-fought loss to the 49ers on Sunday. Tuesday, which is usually a players’ day off, consisted of another practice and meetings to prepare for Seattle. Wednesday will be a combination of Friday and Saturday’s work before heading to the team hotel on Wednesday night.
The work week is significantly truncated and makes it difficult for even healthy players to recover to feel ready to play.
“Veteran players, their bodies, this is really, really hard on them,” Arians said. “So many times over the course of the last 10 years, I’ve seen guys that could not play on Thursday that could play on Sunday and that’s really hard on a football team.”
Former Seahawks fullback Michael Robinson echoed those sentiments prior to their Thursday night game against the 49ers a year ago.
“Go get in a car accident and go try to play a few days later. That’s how it feels,” Robinson said.
49ers receiver Anquan Boldin has also recently criticized the games as being hypocritical when the league is touting player safety initiatives only to have players play two games in five days.
With the league looking to possibly add more Thursday night games, it certainly doesn’t seem as though the games will be going away anytime soon. The players will just have to deal with it.