Watching football practice isn’t a tradition. It’s a waste of time.
Sorry, Flagstaff. I’d miss the wailing trains and occasional waft of skunk as much as the next guy. But we can do without training camp in the pine trees.
We might even do it better.
Most football fans understand the necessity of change. By moving training camp to Glendale, the Cardinals would solve many logistical issues. They wouldn’t waste hours on the interstate. They would expose their players to a much wider base of fans, the ones who don’t have gas money or time for a high-altitude excursion.
Last June, the team held a minicamp session at University of Phoenix Stadium on a Wednesday night and drew 15,000 people. Why?
Answer: It was free, convenient, and something for the entire family to experience. And if the Cardinals put some thought into this, they could make training camp in Glendale a victory for the entire Valley.
By old-school standards, Flagstaff is considered a jewel among cow pastures, a favorite among visiting NFL writers. The scenery can be idyllic. But times are changing. Teams everywhere are going local with their training camps, saving on shipping costs and aggravation. Consolidating the operation is the method of business in today’s NFL, where 19 teams essentially stay home for training camp.
In Arizona’s case, the players would get hotel rooms and not dorm rooms. Westgate gets a boost of summer customers. Glendale gets a much-needed revenue stream, a little something to offset the price of the Coyotes.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals promise free parking and free admission. And they swear they’ll be cognizant of the spectator experience.
This is where the matter gets tricky.
Arizona Cardinals’ camp quandary
Arizona Republic | Mar 6