Cardinals players clear the air
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Darnell Dockett says he's apologized to teammate Kerry Rhodes for the pair's on-field run-in during the waning seconds of last Sunday's loss to the New York Jets.
Dockett said after Wednesday's practice that Rhodes has forgiven him and the pair is moving on.
What Dockett described as a "very heated argument" stemmed from Rhodes trying to persuade him to allow the Jets to score so the Cardinals could get the ball back and try for the winning touchdown.
"It's something that I don't believe in, something that I didn't understand," Dockett said. "It was frustrating at the time. At the end of the day, I am never, never going to lay down and quit. I've been playing football for over 20 years. I've given this organization, I've given Florida State, I've given my high school everything I've got. I love the game. I play with passion and I'll never quit."
The situation became moot when the Jets purposely downed the ball at the Arizona 1-yard line and ran out the clock for a 7-6 victory.
Rhodes, the Arizona free safety who had two interceptions and a forced fumble against the Jets -- his former team -- was not in the locker room when reporters were there Wednesday, but in an email Tuesday he confirmed the run-in but vehemently denied a report that Dockett had spit in his face.
Dockett said he "had no idea" what punishment he might face from the Cardinals and coach Ken Whisenhunt said only that such matters are handled internally.
Strategy, even if it was the only chance the Cardinals had to win the game, apparently did not trump passion for the emotional Arizona defensive lineman.
"At the end of the day, I just do what I can do to get this team a win," Dockett said. "I'm never going to quit. I'm going to play to the whistle. Until the end of time, if I ever have to come to a decision where I have to quit anything, I think that will be my time to hang the jersey and the helmet up and walk away."
The Cardinals carry an eight-game losing streak into Sunday's game at Seattle.
Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press
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