Edgerrin James

Cards notebook: James surpasses 1,000 yards

SAN FRANCISCO - For both the Cardinals and Edgerrin James, reaching the 1,000-yard rushing plateau is somewhat remarkable. Even James, who normally downplays such things, understands that.

“Under the circumstances, it means a lot,” James said Sunday, after he ran for 105 yards on 29 carries.

James has 1,093 yards this season, the highest total for a back since the franchise moved to Arizona, besting the 1,070 Garrison Hearst gained in 1995.

The Cardinals have had just three previous 1,000-yard rushers since moving to Arizona in 1988, the last being back in 1998 when Adrian Murrell ran for 1,042 yards.

Despite struggles, James nears 1,000

TEMPE, Ariz. - Despite all his struggles in his first year in Arizona, Edgerrin James is closing in on a 1,000-yard season.

That's no big deal for James. He topped 1,000 in each of his last three seasons in Indianapolis and five times in his seven NFL seasons. But the Cardinals haven't had a 1,000-yard rusher since Adrian Murrell in 1998.

With three games to play, James has 925 yards and is coming off consecutive 100-yard efforts in victories over St. Louis and Seattle.

"Anything that's good for the franchise is good for me," James said after Thursday's practice. "It would be something that shows that the offensive line has improved. It would be a nice accomplishment, but me, I'd like to be in the playoffs and play for that Super Bowl ring. I've had 1,000 yards."

James, Alexander struggling after stellar seasons

SEATTLE - A year ago, they were two running backs approaching free agency at full speed.

Shaun Alexander set the league's season touchdown record, and Edgerrin James surpassed 1,500 yards rushing for the fourth time in seven NFL seasons.

They were two Cadillacs headed toward the open market with one caveat: their mileage. Each was well past the average career span of an NFL player, but Alexander and James were anything but average.

They run into each other today, the second intersection of their star-crossed seasons. Alexander was stopped for six games by a broken foot, while James has been battered behind a busted line after going from Indianapolis to Arizona.

Edge's advice: Just take care of Matt

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Edgerrin James has some simple advice for those who are plotting the Arizona Cardinals' future.

"If around here they do right by Matt, we're going to be all right," he said.

Enduring a losing season and often running into a brick wall on game day, James said that the future of the franchise is in the hands of Matt Leinart, the rookie who has coolly taken control of the Cardinals' offense.

He compares Leinart to Peyton Manning, his quarterback in much more successful times.

Running backs find their legs in St. Louis

ST. LOUIS - Edgerrin James ran the ball most of the time, and then Marcel Shipp came in to score the touchdowns. And that was fine with James. “I told Shipp to go get all the touchdowns,” James said. “I want to get some yards.”

There was some irony that, after tying an NFL record for the fewest rushing attempts in a game the week previous, the Cardinals had two different running backs smiling after Sunday’s 34-20 win.

James finally got to his coveted 100-yard plateau, gaining 115 yards on 26 carries. Shipp had a threetouchdown day — the first touchdowns Shipp has scored since running in two and catching a third Dec. 15, 2002, in the same Edwards Jones Dome against the Rams.

'Edge' finally tops 100-yard mark

December 4, 2006) — The Arizona Cardinals had the NFL's worst rush offense (67.7 yards per game) and the host St. Louis Rams had the league's worst rush defense (allowing 154.8 yards rushing per game) entering Sunday's game.

If Edgerrin James ever was going to break the ice with his first 100-yard rushing game with Arizona, this figured to the spot. It was. James had 26 carries for 115 yards in a 34-20 win.

James had 49 100-yard rushing games in seven seasons with Indianapolis, including 237 yards in two games vs. the Rams. He was 0-for-11 this season with Arizona.


‘Rested’ James ready to roll

Edgerrin James was back at practice Wednesday, after the Cardinals’ running back had missed Monday’s walk-through tending to a sick relative in Florida.

And he kept his sense of humor in the aftermath of his four-carry day Sunday in Minnesota, the first time in his career he had been used so little for virtually no reason.

“Hey,” James joked, “they’re saving my career.”

James’ 28-year-old legs don’t need the rest, of course. He started strong against the Vikings, rumbling for 14 yards on the Cards’ fourth offensive play, and was barely seen again.

James skips walk-through

A day after sitting out most of the second half against the Minnesota Vikings, Cardinals running back Edgerrin James didn't participate in a scheduled walk-through session at the team's facility in Tempe.

A team spokesman said James was visiting a sick relative in south Florida. He's expected to return for Wednesday's practice, five days before the 2-9 Cardinals visit the St. Louis Rams.

James, the team's prized off-season acquisition, rushed only four times for 15 yards in Sunday's loss. He caught two passes for 10 yards but spent most of Arizona's late comeback watching from the sideline.

James gets to edge of 100 yards

Edgerrin James was glad to break a two-month losing streak, but there was still a bit of an edge to the Edge on Sunday.

James set his Cardinals high with 96 yards rushing in a 17-10 victory over Detroit, although he was a typical carry short of reaching his personal goal for every game, 100.

The Cardinals killed the final 4:35 with eight running plays, including five by James for 24 yards, before Matt Leinart took a knee on the final two scrim--
mage plays.

Rollin' With Cardinals running back Edgerrin James via IM

The last time I hung out with Edgerrin James, he was the Prince of the Desert, the hottest thing to hit Arizona since ... well, you know what I mean.
After the former Indianapolis Colts halfback signed a four-year, $30 million contract with the Arizona Cardinals last March, he became the symbol of the rampant optimism surrounding the long-suffering franchise.

Five months later, when I arrived to cover the team's first preseason game at its sparkling new stadium in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale, James was large and in charge: scoring a Plasma TV for the locker room, shepherding a switch to black cleats and winning side bets from teammates on the sidelines and in local pool halls.


James again at a loss

OAKLAND - Running back Edgerrin James again expressed surprise and dismay Sunday about his lack of production since joining the Cardinals this off-season.

He can't say he wasn't warned.

"I got a lot of warnings," he said.

He watched tape of the Cardinals games last year and was reassured. He didn't see a lot of defenders near the line of scrimmage, so he figured he would have plenty of room to run.

Getting in Edgewise - Edgerrin James hopes new game plan opens running lanes

I'm staring at the duplicity that is Edgerrin James. No, seriously. He possesses adjacent locker spaces at the Cardinals practice facility, one that says, "Edge," the other, "Edgerrin James."

Justin Timberlake's
SexyBack is spilling out of the running back's stereo, although he insists it's just a coincidence, not a statement of self-perception. James, with his dreads, gold teeth and expensive suits may be audacious, but he has earned that right, and the sooner the Cardinals find a way to capitalize on his talents, the better.

James suggested Thursday that the promotion of offensive coordinator Mike Kruczek would help his cause.

'Edge' hopes for more room to run

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) - Perhaps no back in NFL history worked so hard for so little as Edgerrin James did Monday night.

After gaining 55 yards in 36 carries, no wonder he hopes a change in offensive coordinators this week will create at least a little more room to run.

James, who has yet to have a 100-yard rushing game since coming to the Arizona Cardinals, said teams have loaded up against the run, and a shift in tactics under new coordinator Mike Kruczek might change that.
"I'm looking forward to that," James said, "so I can play my game rather than running into these brick walls."

Lay blame for Cardinals' breakdown at James' feet

When your big-ticket running back runs for 17 yards on 17 carries in the second half of an implosion for the ages, what's the next logical move?

If you're Dennis Green, you fire your offensive coordinator.

The Cardinals head coach canned offensive coordinator Keith Rowen this afternoon for Arizona's Monday night disintegration against the Bears. The move brings Tuesday's offensive coordinator casualty count to two.

Tuesday afternoon, Ravens head coach Brian Billick "removed" Jim Fassel from his spot as Baltimore's offensive coordinator.


Edgerrin James and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

I think we can all agree that last night's Arizona-Chicago game was one of the most shocking games in NFL history. Shocking in how Arizona dominated the first three quarters, and shocking in the way they choked at the end.

How on earth did the Cardinals manage to blow their 23-3 lead? Sure, kicker Neil Rackers deserves some blame for missing the game-ending field goal, and everyone on the Arizona punt coverage team is wearing goat horns today. But the biggest culprits in this loss were running back Edgerrin James, the offensive linemen who couldn't block for him, and the coaches who kept calling his number.

Yes, normally it is a good idea to run out the clock with a lead, rather than stop the clock with incomplete passes or worse, risk an interception. But not every general statement applies to every specific situation. The Cardinals have not been able to run the ball against anyone this year, let alone the Bears. When asked why he suddenly started dominating, Brian Urlacher told reporters “First of all, they weren’t blocking me.” Matt Leinart, meanwhile, was killing the Chicago zone coverage in the first half. Every single play he'd find some guy open and ping, first down.

James spinning his wheels in Arizona - Ex-Colt struggling to gain ground in 1st year with Cardinals

MESA, Ariz. -- The Chipmunks' song "Mr. Lonely" warbled through the Cardinals' locker room Thursday, courtesy of resident disc jockey Edgerrin James.

A statement, perhaps?

"No, man, it's just XM radio," James said.

Fair enough, but you can't blame James if he's feeling a bit forlorn these days.

The Cardinals are 1-4 and James has gone a career-high eight straight games without rushing for 100 yards.

James to make most of carries - Running back says Cards offense has to capitalize on ground game

Most of running back Edgerrin James' Sunday afternoons with the Cardinals have followed a similar pattern: He carries the ball fewer times than he wants, watches his team lose and then complains about how he is being used.

Tired of that rut, James said Thursday that he's changing.

"I just got to make use of what I get," James said of his carries. "I've come to that conclusion. Just to make use of what I get and whatever happens, just roll with it because talking about it is not going to do anything."

Cardinals' James getting hit by reality in the desert

MESA, Ariz. - The Chipmunks' song "Mr. Lonely" warbled throughout the Cardinals' locker room Thursday, courtesy of resident disc jockey Edgerrin James.

A statement, perhaps?

"No, man, it's just XM radio," James said.

Fair enough, but you can't blame James if he's feeling a bit forlorn these days.

The Cardinals are 1-4 and James has gone a career-high eight straight games without rushing for 100 yards.

James angered by lack of running plays

Running back Edgerrin James harshly criticized the team's play-calling after Sunday's 23-20 loss to Kansas City, saying the Cardinals didn't run the ball enough in the fourth quarter.

"We just got away from the run," said James, who gained 71 yards on 24 carries. "That's the stupidest thing. You have to be able to finish the game. You got to give us a chance, you know."

James carried four times for 10 yards in the fourth quarter.

James might get more touches

A couple of weeks ago, Edgerrin James said he wanted to be a bigger part of the Cardinals’ offense. With rookie Matt Leinart starting at quarterback, James might get his wish.

The Cardinals are expected to use the running game and the short passing game more often with Leinart, which will mean more opportunities for James against a Kansas City defense ranked third in the NFL.

“Whenever they call my name, I’m ready,” James said. “If I have to carry it 50 times, I’ll be ready 50 times.”

Cards' James Won't Play Blame Game

Edgerrin James is averaging 3.1 yards per carry through his first four games with the Arizona Cardinals - by far his career-low. He says there's no use blaming his offensive line.

"A lot of people want to point fingers here and there, and I just say there's no need to point fingers because this is what we've got," James said after practice Thursday. "We're not going to have a new offensive line, a new system. We're not going to have nothing new, and we've just got to make the best of it and do what it takes."

Edgerrin James Update

When Cardinals RB Edgerrin James said last week that he thought he was being underutilized, our sources surmised that it wasn't so much that he wanted more carries but rather more receiving opportunities. We hear James would like to catch at least 4-5 passes per game.

James says mistakes keeping talented Cardinals from success

TEMPE, Ariz. -- End the mistakes and success will come.

That's the simple recipe
Edgerrin James is offering after his first three games with the Arizona Cardinals.

"Go out and play the game and don't beat yourself," James said after Thursday's practice. "That's what it boils down to. We just go out and play and don't make mistakes and we do all right."

James just wants the ball more

Running back Edgerrin James smiled while fielding reporters' questions after the Cardinals' 16-14 loss to the Rams Sunday, but he wasn't happy.

Despite having his best day with the Cardinals, James didn't think his number was called often enough.

"No, I'm not going to say anything about the play-calling," James said. "I just want to play. I just want to be a part of it. I want the ball in my hands. When you're in the game and you don't have the ball in your hands, that's hard. I can't question why this and that. It's always a reason, but I don't know what is."

'Crazy and unnecessary' James frustrated with direction Cardinals are headed

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Edgerrin James leaned against the side of his locker after adjusting the brim of his brown San Diego Padres cap and placing his bling neatly over his matching caramel shirt. With his gold grill shining from the camera lights around him, he simply laughed in frustration as he tried to figure out how the Cardinals found a way to lose to the Rams, 16-14, in one if the wilder finishes the league has seen this season.

"It's ridiculous man. It's a joke," said James who had 24 carries for 94 yards and one touchdown. "It's crazy. We got to do something different if we want different results. It's something we're not doing right. I don't know what it is. I'm just trying to do my job."

James Proves the Point: The Line Can Block the Back

The Arizona Cardinals had the worst running game in the N.F.L. last season and went into the off-season determined to fix it. They made what would seem to be a logical move, signing the free agent Edgerrin James, who was coming off two consecutive 1,500-yard seasons for the Indianapolis Colts, to a four-year, $30 million contract.

But after two games, it is clear that the Cardinals’ problems are anything but solved. James, who gained at least 88 yards in 13 consecutive games last season, had 73 yards against San Francisco and 64 against Seattle. His early average of 3.1 yards a carry is far below his career average of 4.2.

James welcomes reunited line for Rams game

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Still looking for his first 100-yard rushing game in an Arizona uniform, Edgerrin James at least finally has the Cardinals' offensive line in place as envisioned when training camp started.

Right tackle Oliver Ross, sidelined since the first week of training camp while recovering from knee surgery, will be back in the starting lineup Sunday when Arizona (1-1) is host to the St. Louis Rams (1-1). That allows Reggie Wells to move from right tackle back to his normal spot at left guard.

Cards' James still seeks 100-yard game

Edgerrin James has never entered Week 3 of an NFL season still searching for his first 100-yard performance.

In seven years with the Indianapolis Colts, James averaged 114 yards through two games. This season, his first with the Arizona Cardinals, he is averaging 68.5.

Coach Dennis Green explained James' lack of production during Monday's weekly news conference. In short, he said it's not the running back's fault. Too many sacks and penalties pushed the Cardinals into long-yardage situations in Sunday's 21-10 loss to the Seahawks in Seattle. Too many fumbled snaps also disrupted rhythm that led to, in the coach's opinion, one of Kurt Warner's worst games as a Cardinals quarterback.

ESPN The Magazine Article on Edgerrin James


Arizona just begins to let James loose

Trying to preserve a seven-point lead against San Francisco last week, Arizona coach Dennis Green made a late-game decision that would have been unthinkable last season.

He decided to use the running game for a time-consuming drive.

The Cardinals, who unsuccessfully relied on J.J. Arrington and Marcel Shipp to run the ball in 2005, dug deep into their financial pockets in the offseason to sign running back Edgerrin James.

James sees progress in ground game

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Edgerrin James wasn't exactly boffo in his Arizona Cardinals debut, just good enough to believe the running game is moving ever-so-slowly in the right direction heading into Sunday's game at Seattle.

That wasn't the case early in Arizona's 34-27 victory over San Francisco.

James, the Cardinals' prize free agent signing, had 4 yards in his first eight carries. Slowly, though, the line began creating a few small creases for the big running back. He wound up with 73 yards in 26 carries.

James also had runs of 11 and 13 yards called back by penalties.

"That's 24 yards," James said after Thursday's practice, "and then you just eliminate a couple of negatives and you're right at 100. So it's not bad. We're on the right track and we're going to get better. We can only get better."

Arizona running game shows signs of life

After one quarter of play Sunday, the Arizona Cardinals’ running game looked a lot like it did in the preseason.

But then for the first time as a Cardinal, Edgerrin James ran onto the field for the second quarter (and the third and the fourth) and showed a glimpse of the player Arizona bought for $30 million this offseason.

“Preseason is preseason. I don’t think anyone expects that much,” offensive guard Reggie Wells said. “He’s making a lot of money and they got it out of him today.”

James had just 4 yards on eight carries in the first period of the Cardinals’ 34-27 win over the 49ers. It was a frighteningly similar output to the preseason when he gained 1 yard on seven carries.

But over the final three quarters, James ground out 69 yards on 18 carries and the Cardinals proved they were truly dedicated to sticking with the running game.

James did dirty work late in game

GLENDALE, Ariz. — There was nothing flashy or picturesque about Edgerrin James' performance in his first game with the Arizona Cardinals.

In Arizona's 34-27 victory on Sunday afternoon, the former Indianapolis Colts running back's longest run was 10 yards, and the longest of his three receptions gained 6.

Yet it was James' steady play in the fourth quarter that might have been the difference in the game. After the 49ers closed to within 31-24 on a 22-yard field goal by Joe Nedney with 8:52 to play, James took control.

James carried the ball seven times for 20 yards on the Cardinals' final possession, which consumed more than 7 minutes. The drive ended with a 30-yard Neil Rackers field goal, and it left the 49ers with precious little time to overcome a 10-point deficit.

"That's what I'm here for — to hold the ball and finish the game," James said following his 26-carry, 73-yard day. "Last year, they had a problem finishing the game. That's not going to be a problem this year."

Edgerrin makes Cards contenders this time

It's opening weekend in the NFL and I feel compelled to lead with the Arizona Cardinals.

In most years, this would be considered so wrong and offensive, I would be fired.

But not in 2006. Not for a team that made the biggest splash in free agency with the signing of star running back Edgerrin James. Not for a team that clearly boasts the best receiving tandem in the NFC. Not for a team that owned the NFL draft, highlighted by the scooping up of one of the most successful quarterbacks in college football history, who is going to be a star at the NFL level. Not when the Arizona Cardinals, for the first time in, well, forever, will have a legit home-field advantage as they break in a gorgeous new stadium this weekend.

The influence of all of the above cannot be understated.

James has come in and changed everything, from the clubhouse music to the equipment to the team chemistry to the tempo in practice. As star receiver Anquan Boldin told me this summer, "Edge has set the bar high for us. He believes we are a playoff team. He wants us to work like a playoff team. He wants us to bond like a playoff team off the field. Edge knows what it takes, and we are ready to follow."

James speaks out about Colts

It seems Edgerrin James isn't doing a lot of fond looking back on his seven-year stay with the Indianapolis Colts.

Now with the Arizona Cardinals after signing a four-year, $30 million deal in the offseason, James made it clear in a USA Today story that he didn't appreciate the Colts giving him a one-year franchise contract two straight years while big-name teammates were signing long-term deals.

"All season, I told (backup running back Dominic Rhodes), 'Dog, if I get through this season, I'm out of here, and it's going to be your show. Just let me get a chance.' It was like I was breaking out of jail or something."

Also in the story, James took umbrage with Colts president Bill Polian's draft-day description of James' possible successor, Joseph Addai. Polian said the LSU rookie is "what we haven't had here in a while, in terms of taking an 8-yard run that's blocked and turning it into a 22-yard run."


Arizona hopes James plays with an 'Edge'

TEMPE, Ariz. — The running woes that have long plagued the Arizona Cardinals could be history. Now, Arizona has the `Edge.'

After only a cameo appearance in the preseason, Edgerrin James will be on full display in the Cardinals' opener Sunday against San Francisco. It's time to earn that four-year, $30 million contract.

"I'd say Edge should get probably 25 runs and probably five touches with the pass," coach Dennis Green said after the Cardinals practiced Wednesday.

Cardinals fans packed the team's new stadium for two home preseason games, but only got a glimpse of their new star running back. James carried seven times for 1 yard in four preseason games, caught two passes for 11 yards, and would have preferred not to have played at all.

James ready to help Cardinals take flight on and off field

PHOENIX — Before heading off into a sweltering Arizona night, Edgerrin James lowered the window of the SUV he was riding in and playfully engaged in role-playing.

He was suddenly an Eddie Murphy character.

"Billy Ray Valentine: Capricorn," James said, citing the line with the same pitch, pace and accent that Murphy did in the 1983 comedy classic,
Trading Places.

"But really," he added in his own voice, laughing, "I'm a Leo."

James, a lion of a running back for seven years with the Indianapolis Colts, has indeed traded places.


James began Miami’s revival as NFL player factory

Edgerrin James didn’t need to be introduced to Antrel Rolle during his first practice with the Arizona Cardinals. A look and a nod was all it took.

James knew a fellow ’Cane when he saw one.

“We’re the biggest family in the business. We’re the boldest family, we’re the closest,” James said of the brotherhood of former Miami players who out-talk, out-bond and outrepresent any other alumni group in the NFL.

“That’s one thing. We let you know that we love where we come from, and you’ll see why we brag on what we do.” There’s plenty to brag about. Miami has had at least one player selected in the first round of the NFL draft in each of the last 12 years. It’s the longest such streak in NFL history.

James is trying to turn Cardinals into winners - starting with shoes

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Edgerrin James doesn't find the rancid history of the Arizona Cardinals all that repugnant. He isn't turned off by their comic ineptness through the decades, their mustering just one playoff victory in the past 60 seasons and never once making the Super Bowl.

That part James can stomach.

``I've always been my own person,'' James said. ``That's what got me this far, doing my thing, making my own decisions. If I did what everybody else did, I would probably be in trouble. If `Edge' doesn't have an interest in doing this, `Edge' is not doing this. That's how I live.''

But even though James was able to overlook the Cardinals' sordid past when he signed a four-year, $30 million deal in March, bidding farewell in the process to the high-powered Indianapolis Colts, the running back from Immokalee, Fla., and the University of Miami cringed when he took one look at their uniforms, the cleats in particular.

They were white, as in inappropriate for smash-mouth football.

Cardinals wait for games that count to showcase James

It's funny. The one thing the Cardinals could be reasonably sure of going into the season was they could throw the ball. And we haven't seen any reason to dispute that belief. In fact, I'm starting to think they will be able to throw the ball with either Kurt Warner or Matt Leinart.

But their offseason emphasis was on improving a running game that was utterly incompetent one year ago. They made
Edgerrin James a rich, or rather, richer, man.

So the one thing you'd think the Cardinals would want to prove to themselves in the preseason was that they could run the ball. They haven't done that up to this point.

James' presence gives Cards' passing game sharper Edge

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Single coverage.
The mere mention of the concept had Anquan Boldin twisting with an incredulous expression, much like someone would upon stumbling on an intriguing fact in a history book.
"I haven't seen single coverage since my rookie year," said Boldin, in his fourth season with the Arizona Cardinals, as he sat on a bench after a recent practice. "None."
Boldin and
Larry Fitzgerald each caught more than 100 passes for 1,400-plus yards last season, just the second time in the NFL's 86-year history that two teammates had that combination. The Detroit Lions' Herman Moore and Brett Perriman did it in 1995.2006-08-21-james-large

Cards not concerned about lack of running game

Edgerrin James, who often spouts his philosophy that life is too short to stress, applied that to his football team.

The Cardinals’ running back was mellow after Saturday night’s 30-3 preseason loss in New England, emphasizing that no one should worry about the team’s still stagnant running game.

“As long as you don’t get tackled in the backfield, and I didn’t get tackled in the backfield, it’s sweet,” James said. “Trust me. There is a reason why you lose, but I’m not worried about it. When the regular season starts, we’ll be fine. We’re just working out all the kinks right now.”

A Glimmer of Hope in a Hot Desert Sun

In the parity-driven N.F.L., it is difficult to make the playoffs only one time in 23 seasons
The Cardinals franchise has managed that. So why should anyone foresee an end to the playoff drought in the Arizona desert, despite the signing of Edgerrin James, the drafting of Matt Leinart and the sparkling new Cardinals Stadium that looks like something out of “Star Trek”?

Edgerrin James' cousin on same route to Miami

CORAL GABLES, Fla. - Javarris James has plenty of speed.

He uses it to dart through small holes in the line of scrimmage, dodge pursuing linebackers and blow past defensive backs. He rushed for 300 yards in one high school game and finished his prep career with 72 touchdowns, even though nearly every defense was loaded up with the singular goal of slowing him down.