Defensive end Darnell Dockett was introduced as a newly signed member of the San Francisco 49ers and he already can’t wait to play his old team.
After 11 seasons as a member of the Arizona Cardinals, Darnell Dockett has moved on from the team that moved on from him this offseason. Following an ACL injury that cost him his 2014 season, Dockett was released this winter and received immediate interest from their division rival San Francisco 49ers. He signed a two-year deal with them and his remarks since suggest that while Dockett appreciates his time in the desert, he’s ready to get to work at beating his old team.
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“My time in Arizona is over, and now it’s time for me to take my work ethic, my heart and my passion to another team,” Dockett said per the 49ers team website. “And unfortunately for them, it’s for a rivalry team. Now it’s all business; I’m coming to win.”
Dockett had previously expressed appreciation for his time in Arizona and the team offered fond parting words in kind. But it’s all business, as Dockett says, and football is a business of winning, first and foremost.
In addition to offering a competitive roster, Dockett cited the 49ers’ head coach, former defensive line coach Jim Tomsula, as a big reason for his move.
“For me, the head coach is a defensive line coach, and people fail to realize, man, this guy is awesome,” Dockett said. “After every game I played against San Francisco, he was one of the guys who always came over and we talked it up. He admired my game and admired what I bring to the table.”
The Arizona Cardinals sported one of the best defenses in the NFL throughout the whole year in Dockett’s absence, so it makes sense that the team felt it could move on without Dockett’s big cap hit. However, that doesn’t make things all good between the two parties. Dockett took his release seriously and he’s ready to prove his old team wrong.
“All I can say for San Fran is that they won the lottery,” Dockett said. “The biggest thing is I get to play Arizona two times a year, so you know what time it is.”
We don’t, but the Cardinals offense sure will come fall 2015.
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