FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- The Arizona Cardinals released center Pete Kendall on Sunday, less than three weeks after new coach Dennis Green installed the
eight-year veteran as a starter.
"My only comment is that I'm shocked and that I'll be moving forward," Kendall said when he returned to the team's Tempe facility.
Kendall, 31, was due to make $2.75 million this year and $2 million in 2005. Kendall, who signed with Arizona as an unrestricted free agent in 2001,
started 23 games at left guard his first two years with the Cardinals and 13 at center last season. After separating a shoulder Dec. 7 at San
Francisco, Kendall got in on just one play in the final three contests.
Green sidestepped questions about why Kendall was dropped and whether the move was related to player complaints about the intensity of summer
workouts. The NFL made the Cardinals forfeit their final week of workouts last month after a group of players complained to the union that the team
had violated league rules by working the players too hard.
Green, hired to rebuild a 4-12 team after coach Dave McGinnis was fired, said he wasn't going after whisteblowers.
"From the very first day, I've said that the team has not played as well as they could play, and that's the team," Green said. "Along that way, no one
should be surprised at anything."
Green was critical of Arizona's offensive line after watching last season's game film. He already demoted tackle L.J. Shelton from the first unit.
Green said rookie Alex Stepanovich, a fourth-round draft pick, would be moved into Kendall's spot. Stepanovich started 26 games at Ohio State. The
Cardinals also drafted Kansas State guard Nick Leckey in the sixth round, and Green listed him as a center.
Kendall was a first-round pick by Seattle in 1996. He started 75 of 76 games he played with the Seahawks. Offensive lineman Kendrick Rogers, who was
on the 53-man roster for eight games last season before a season-ending wrist injury, also was waived on the eve of training camp.
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