Calais Campbell uses OTAs to get back in football groove, adapt to new teammates

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Coming off his first Pro Bowl appearance, Arizona Cardinals defensive end Calais Campbell has narrowed his focus during the first two weeks of organized team activities.

He's working on regaining his technique.

"During the offseason you don't really work technique drills before OTAs, you kinda just work on conditioning and getting your power and explosion and all that good stuff in the weight room," Campbell said. "And now when you get on to the field, you want to work on your technique so you're almost like starting brand new again, just getting a feel for it again."

Campbell is also using OTAs to get a feel for his new teammates, especially those who'll line up next to him on the defensive line. The Cardinals didn't re-sign Dan Williams and cut Darnell Dockett, both of whom who, along with Campbell, comprised the Cardinals' defensive front from 2010-2013.

Arizona signed Cory Redding and Corey Peters in their place, and the last week-and-a-half have given Campbell an opportunity to see how they rush and how the three complement each other.

"You can sort of start here," Campbell said. "It's sort of different, though, without pads on and without going 100 mph. Everything is so much different.

"So, now you just scratch the surface on how it's going to be and you get a feel for it. We're still a long way's away."

Part of getting new teammates is adjusting to their leadership styles.

After years of watching Dockett and Williams in the locker room, Campbell is finding out how a veteran like Redding commands respect. Replacing Dockett, Williams and even Antonio Cromartie will be left up to the new faces as well as returning vets like Jerraud Powers and Rashad Johnson.

"It happens," Campbell said. "It's part of the game. Those guys were really good for the team the last couple years.

"Cory Redding coming in is a natural leader. Frostee [Rucker]. Even Sean Weatherspoon is a guy that is very well spoken. On the defense, we're not missing any leadership."

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