TEMPE, Ariz. — Arizona Cardinals 11-time Pro Bowl receiver Larry Fitzgerald says he currently doesn’t have the desire to play an 18th NFL season, though he left the possibility open that he might resume his career.

In an interview on SiriusXM Radio with Jim Gray on Mad Dog Sports Radio, Fitzgerald said he’s currently focused on being a radio broadcaster.

“To be honest with you, I just don’t have the urge to play right now,” Fitzgerald said in the interview. “I don’t know how I’ll feel in September, October, November, moving forward, but I just, today, I just don’t have that urge. And I think I have to be respectful of that. Football is not one of those games you want to walk out there and play and not be fully engaged and ready to prepare and do the things necessary that you need to do.”

Fitzgerald, 37, has put together 17 of the most consistent and productive seasons for a wide receiver in NFL history.

He hasn’t been at the Cardinals’ preseason camp in Glendale, Arizona, over the past month. Coach Kliff Kingsbury and teammates have consistently said they’re not sure of Fitzgerald’s football plans. The Cardinals signed veteran receiver A.J. Green during the offseason.

Known by many Cardinals fans as “Larry Legend,” he has played his entire career for Arizona. He has 1,432 catches for 17,492 yards. Those numbers both rank second in NFL history behind Jerry Rice.

He’s proven incredibly durable, even in his latest seasons. He played in every regular-season game from 2015 to 2019 and appeared in 13 games during 2020, catching 54 passes for 409 yards and a touchdown.

BROWNS: Linebacker Jacob Phillips tore his biceps and could miss most of this season, a person familiar with his situation told The Associated Press.

Phillips was hurt Thursday during the first of two joint practices with the New York Giants. For Phillips to come back, the Browns will have to keep him on their initial 53-man roster when final cuts are made Aug. 31, and then place him on injured reserve.

The Browns expected Phillips, a third-round pick in 2020, to be in their rotation and have a large role in their revamped defense. His loss leaves the Browns extremely thin at linebacker and it’s likely they’ll look outside their roster for help.

• Browns tight end David Njoku has changed his mind – again.

After asking to be traded by Cleveland a year ago, Njoku now says he’s happy and comfortable with the Browns and has asked his agent to try and work out a contract extension with the team.

“I’ve been here for four years, knocking on five, I don’t really know anything different,” the 2017 first-round draft pick said. “I’d like to stay here.”

It’s another reversal for Njoku, who recently fired super agent Drew Rosenhaus and went back to Malki Kawa, his original representative. Last year, Njoku was displeased when the Browns signed tight end Austin Hooper to a massive free agent contract and then drafted Harrison Bryant.

But Browns General Manager Andrew Berry held on to Njoku, and after a steady 2020 season and strong performance in the playoffs (four catches for 54 yards) against Kansas City, he feels like he has a more defined role.

The Browns showed their confidence and commitment in him by exercising his $6 million option during the offseason, guaranteeing his deal.

• The New York Giants planned to hit some golf balls as a team bonding exercise Friday night.

They didn’t invite the Browns.

Tempers flared during the second joint practice between the teams, with Browns cornerback Troy Hill and Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard squaring off and throwing punches at each other well after the session ended.

Hill and Shepard were part of a group of players mingling in the middle of the two practice fields following the tense, two-hour workout in humid weather conditions when they suddenly began swinging.

Shepard, who ducked under a wild punch from Hill, then pulled off his shirt as he walked away to do an interview with New York media members. He didn’t mention the incident with Hill before boarding one of the team buses waiting nearby.

“That is news to me. Thank you for breaking that to me,” said Browns Coach Kevin Stefanski, who was unaware of the skirmish when he met with reporters. “I’ll review the tape.”

The two practices were a warm up to Sunday’s exhibition game at FirstEnergy Stadium. Stefanski said quarterback Baker Mayfield will not play and that he intended to rest the majority of his starters for the second straight week.

Giants Coach Joe Judge planned to talk to Stefanski before deciding whether he’ll play starting quarterback Daniel Jones and the other first-teamers.

Judge said he’ll treat New York’s exhibition at New England as more of a dress rehearsal for the season opener.

 

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