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Morning Tailgate: Skelton Prepares for Cardinals

Posted Oct 9, 2013

49ers No. 3 quarterback John Skelton spent his first three seasons in Arizona, now his division rival.

John Skelton will likely have as much effect on the 49ers-Arizona Cardinals game in Week 6 that Scott Tolzien had on the 49ers-Green Bay Packers game in Week 1.

That is to say, not much.

“I don’t know what they do on offense compared to when I was there,” Skelton said. “I’ll give the Cards looks (in practice) and try to do my best to simulate Carson (Palmer) back there.”

Skelton, whom San Francisco signed to a one-year free agent contract one week ago, spent his first three NFL seasons in Arizona. (Tolzien, you might remember, was waived by the 49ers on Aug. 26 and promptly signed by the Packers in advance of the teams' season-opening matchup.)

“It’s hard because they’ve so much turnover in the last year: new coaching staff, new offense, new defense, lot of new faces too,” said Skelton, who lived in Arizona and watched his old team on TV while he was ‘out on the streets’ looking for another quarterbacking job. “It’s almost unrecognizable.”

What is recognizable: some of the Cards core players – defensive linemen Darnell Dockett and Calais Campbell to start – and how to prepare for them.


So as likely as Skelton is to be inactive this Sunday at Candlestick Park, he will be very active this week in meeting rooms and on the practice field. When he’s not spending extra time with position coach Geep Chryst, he’ll be helping his new teammates study up on his old ones.

“We always had so much back and forth when I was in Arizona. This week of preparation was always that much more intense, that much more focused,” Skelton recalled. “It was almost the point where everyone was walking on egg shells: ‘We got to do everything right, we got to be perfect.’ Especially last season with all the success the Niners had and the run they made.

“Now to see it on the other side, anytime it’s a divisional game, you’re always focused. I haven’t been here for a Seattle preparation yet, but being here for the first day going over Cardinals stuff, that intensity is there, that focus is there… We’re not taking ‘em lightly.”

For more storylines surrounding the team, check out this edition of Morning Tailgate links, presented by State Farm.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee posted a roundup of the 49ers cornerback prospects.

Bill Williamson of ESPN.com focused on the play of Colin Kaepernick.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com noted a new honor for Tramaine Brock.

Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle said Bruce Arians has help in figuring out the 49ers.

Carl Steward of the San Jose Mercury News wrote about Ray McDonald’s injury status.

Taylor Price of 49ers.com has the details on Tank Carradine’s progress.







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