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Friday, December 6, 2013
FTP: Ballard waiting for playing time

By Josh Weinfuss

Flush the Pocket will be your daily morning dose of the Arizona Cardinals. It'll recap the top storyline from the previous day and give you a look at what everyone is saying locally and nationally.

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Jake Ballard's tenure in Arizona started out better and faster than even he could have imagined.

Just six days after he was signed on Nov. 4, Ballard played 22 snaps in his first game since Super Bowl XLVI in 2012. But since then his appearances have dropped each game. He played 15 snaps at Jacksonville, including one that featured a 29-yard catch, and 12 against Indianapolis before seeing the field for just four snaps Sunday in Philadelphia.

While it's better than sitting on his couch, where he spent the first eight weeks of the season looking for a team to pick him up after he rehabbed his ACL, there hasn't been a real reason for the decrease in his snaps.

“I'm going to do what the coaches are going to ask me to do and whatever I can do to help the team,” Ballard said. “We've been playing pretty well with what they had going. (TE) Robby (Housler) and (TE) Jim (Dray) are doing great jobs. I'm just going to bide my time and wait until I get a chance to do whatever they ask me to do, I guess.”

Ballard has a better feeling for the playbook and the scheme, he said. He also feels like the coaching staff is starting to trust him more.

When he'll start getting a bigger role is still to be determined, and it may not happen Sunday against the Rams.

“We'll wait and see,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said. “See what his role is in the game plan.”

In other news…

Kent Somers of AZCentral.com writes about Andre Roberts’ decreased role.

Craig Morgan of FoxSportsArizona.com writes about the Cards’ need for an NFC West win.

Kyle Odegard of AZCardinals.com writes about Bradley Sowell’s challenge.