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first_img Top Stories “Playing safety is not something that I’ve always beendoing,” he said after a recent OTA practice. “I reallyjust started actually getting to play safety now. I’vebeen playing corner basically all the way up until myjunior year. I really got thrown in to safety my senioryear full time.”The switch from cornerback to safety doesn’t sound like abig deal. After all, the two positions are both found inthe defensive secondary.Yet, Bethel says the transition is much more than just the10 to 20 yards that separate the two spots on the field.“I mean it’s a big jump,” said the 2011 Big SouthDefensive Player of the Year after totaling 87 tackles,four INTs and a sack. “Knowing a lot of corner stuff in college where you don’treally have to know as much, then going to safety in theleague where I’m now responsible for making all the checksand making calls and knowing every where everybody has tobe. It’s just something I’m trying to adjust to and getused to doing.”Through three weeks of OTAs and a rookie mini camp, Bethelhas opened the eyes of defensive backs coach Louie Cioffi. It is hard enough to make the transition from college tothe NFL, even harder when a position change is thrown intothe mix.Welcome to Justin Bethel’s world. The Cardinals drafted the 21-year-old in the sixth round(177th overall) out of Presbyterian College.Bethel played cornerback for much of his time at theprivate liberal arts school in Clinton, South Carolina.The Cardinals, however, are asking him to play safety. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ “He’s done a good job,” said Cioffi, now entering hissecond season with the Cardinals. “He’s in here workingextra, watching film. He asks a lot of good questions.”According to Cioffi, a learning curve is expected withBethel coming from a small school. But his ability toplay multiple positions will only help him see the fieldmore.“A kid that has his athletic ability, that’s what we wanthim for,” said Cioffi. “We want him to be able to moveinside to the hash and play safety and be able to coverthat third or fourth wide receiver that comes into thegame.”Bethel started 43 of 44 games during his career atPresbyterian. A run like that with the Cardinals may takehim some time. “There’s still a lot of things that I need to learn. Thecoaches are helping me and the other players are helpingme. I feel if I just keep getting into my books like I’vebeen doing and keep studying and studying it’ll startcoming second nature.“There’s a lot of things I’m picking up now that I didn’tknow before. It’s getting a little easier every time.” Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away 0 Comments   Share   Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocationlast_img read more