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Bear shot dead after attacking 15-year-old in Arizona cabin:

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Bear shot dead after attacking 15-year-old in Arizona cabin:


A black bear was shot and killed by Arizona fish and game officers after it entered a home through an open door and injured a teenager in a mountain community near the New Mexico state line, wildlife officials said.

The 15-year-old boy, identified as Brigham Hawkins by his family, received wounds to his face and arm when the bear swiped at him, and he was treated at a hospital after the late Wednesday incident in Alpine, the state Game and Fish Department said.

His mother, Carol Hawkins, told CBS affiliate KPHO-TV in Phoenix that the bear attacked her son while he was alone and watching television.

“Never in our wildest dreams did we think (a bear) would come in the home,” she told the station.

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Hawkins said her other son heard screams and went to help. Wildlife officials said the bear entered the home a second time before it fled.

“Not many kids can say they got in a fight with a bear and came out on top,” Hawkins said in a Facebook post that included a photo showing cuts on her son’s nose and arm. Hawkins did not respond to a Facebook message Saturday from The Associated Press.

Wildlife officers found and shot the bear, which the agency said was believed to be about 3 years old and would be tested for disease by department specialists.

“It was thanks to the quick reaction by his brother and his family that they were able to distract the bear from what very easily in a matter of seconds could have turned into a real tragedy there,” AZ Game and Fish Department Law Enforcement Supervisor Shawn Wagner told KPHO-TV.

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The teen was taken to a local hospital with injuries to his face and arm and has started the rabies vaccine as a precaution but is expected to recover.

“Everybody that came into help him, he had a big thank you and so he’s handling it well. And he’ll be okay,” Carol Hawkins told the station.

The attack was the 16th by bears on people in the state since wildlife officials began keeping records in 1990, including two that were fatal, the department said.

A 66-year-old man was killed almost a year ago when he was attacked at a campsite in the Groom Creek area south of Prescott and about 100 miles north of Phoenix.

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Arizona

Arizona forest officials warn of abandoned campfires being found in restricted areas

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Arizona forest officials warn of abandoned campfires being found in restricted areas


PHOENIX (AZFamily) — The Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management says they’ve come across several abandoned campfires still burning in restricted areas.

Officials said they could have led to a catastrophe if they didn’t find them and put them out.

In total, 10 were in areas already under Stage 1 Fire Restrictions. In addition, all were east of Apache Junction in various areas of state land. Some were just off dirt roads but others were in rural regions.

There were all found with no signs of someone attempting to put them out.

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According to forest officials, campfires have caused many wildfires not just in Arizona but across the western part of the country.

Authorities are emphasizing they will be out and about enforcing these restrictions this summer.

“We’ve got prevention patrols going on throughout Arizona. You know, we’re trying to make sure that people are abiding by restrictions, but we’re just asking residents again to be mindful of those restrictions. They won’t last forever. We put them in place to be proactive so we can decrease the amount of starts across the state and for the protection of our firefighters and the public as well,” said Tiffany Davila, an Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management spokesperson.

Breaking these restrictions is not just a minor offense. It can lead to hefty fines and potentially jail time.

Last year, a Tucson man was fined a staggering $180,000 for starting a wildfire while target shooting.

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State officials say so far that 50,000 acres have burned this year, which is twice the amount than this time last year.

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Bruce Arians: No Doubt Cardinals Can Make Playoffs

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Bruce Arians: No Doubt Cardinals Can Make Playoffs


ARIZONA — Former Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians is a believer in this rendition of his former team.

That’s not quite a popular opinion shared across the league, as the Cardinals didn’t seemingly improve far from their 4-13 mark last season – though they upgraded some spots nonetheless.

There’s plenty of reason to believe the Cardinals will be better moving forward under Jonathan Gannon’s guidance. 2023 was Gannon’s first at the helm, and now there’s expectations for improvement going forward.

Arians – who did an interview with PHNX’s Craig Morgan – says he’s a fan of Gannon.

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“I love the hire. He’s been a winner everywhere he’s been,” Arians told Morgan. “Getting Kyler healthy and ready to go is really the key now. Hopefully, he’s matured enough to take over a team. If he has, the sky’s the limit.”

More so, Arians says it wouldn’t shock him to see the Cardinals make a playoff push.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt. A lot of things can change in one season. … When we went in, we were the bottom feeders of that division and then we won the division a couple of years,” Arians said.

“I can see that happening again if they stay healthy and they are bought in.”

The Cardinals themselves certainly seem bought in.

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“We’ve got a bunch of guys that are team-first guys in there that are competitive and want to improve their games,” Gannon told reporters earlier this offseason.

“That’s what the culture is. I think you have to work on that daily because your actions go into culture on a daily basis. So we all got to be aligned, and we got to be on it. And when we get out of alignment, that’s okay, you gotta get back in alignment quick. So that’s what wins. And our guys understand that and I’m happy where it’s at day one.”

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Five Arizona Cardinals players poised for a breakout

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Five Arizona Cardinals players poised for a breakout


With the NFL offseason in the midst of the only truly slow spot in the calendar, it’s a good time to start taking a look ahead to next season. There’s a lot of optimism around this team lately, so I thought I’d add to it by taking a look at players poised for a breakout in the 2024 season.

Breakouts come in all shapes and sizes. You could have an undrafted player make huge contributions out of seemingly nowhere (think Dennis Gardeck’s 7-sack season back in 2020). Or you could have a young player put it all together like David Johnson back in 2016. Or even an established starter become a star like Kyler Murray making his first Pro Bowl (also in 2020).

I won’t try to predict any “out of nowhere” breakouts—those are so fun precisely because you *can’t* predict them—but I’ve identified a few young players who could be ready to become big contributors and some established starters ready to become stars. Let’s start with a couple players on the defensive side of the ball ready to really contribute to this team.

Note: I’m not considering rookies in this article, as you can’t really “break out” if you haven’t played yet, right?

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Young Players Ready to Make a Leap

LB Mack Wilson Sr.

Wilson has taken an interesting path to the desert. He was a 5th-round pick by the Browns in 2019 and started 14 games as a rookie. But he quickly fell out of favor there and has spent the last two seasons mostly playing special teams with the Patriots. But a lot of scouts liked what they saw out of him on defense, and he certainly caught GM Monti Ossenfort’s eye, as he gave him a 3-year deal worth almost $13M (with $6.5M guaranteed). He figures to slide into one of the starting LB spots, where he’ll bring a unique blend of experience and potential (he’s only 26) to the front seven. Could he be the missing piece DC Nick Rallis has been searching for?

EDGE BJ Ojulari

This one is almost too easy. Ojulari, a 2nd-round pick last year, dealt with some injury problems last offseason and took a while to get going. He played sparingly until Week 8 (less than 33% of the defensive snaps), but from that point on he played more than 50% of the snaps on defense and totaled 4 sacks (tied for second on the team for the season), 5 TFLs, 6 QB hits, and 1 pass defended without starting a single game. With a starting gig, a fully healthy offseason, improved D-line talent around him, and natural improvement in Year 2, he looks like a double-digit sack guy waiting to happen—something the player himself is already targeting.

WR Michael Wilson

Here’s another 2nd-year player ready to break out. Unlike Ojulari, Wilson was a starter from the get-go. He played well in his rookie season, even if his final numbers weren’t all that impressive: 38/565/3 TDs. Of course, his QB was Josh Dobbs for most of the season, and then he was injured in a few games when Kyler came back. It took him a couple games to get healthy and click with Kyler, but he went 10/130/1 TD over the final two games of the season. That’s an incredibly small sample size and these numbers shouldn’t be taken entirely seriously as he’ll have more competition for targets this season, but those numbers prorate to 85/1100/9 TDs over a full 17-game season. I don’t think we’ll pass enough for Wilson to really challenge those numbers, but something like 65/900/5 could certainly be obtainable.

Established Starters Ready to Become Stars

TE Trey McBride

This is another no-brainer. And if you wanted to argue that McBride has already broken out, I wouldn’t argue too much. He went 81/825/3 TDs last season with Dobbs, Clayton Tune, and a recovering Kyler throwing him the ball. The 81 receptions are a Cardinals franchise record, and the 825 yards are the second-most in franchise history (behind Jackie Smith’s 1,205 way back in 1967 when the team was in St. Louis). So he’s already one of the best tight ends in Cardinals history. But he should be even better this year with a fully healthy Kyler and an improved offensive ecosystem around him. Many fantasy analysts have him the third TE off the board, and he should challenge for his first Pro Bowl berth this season. McBride is on the very cusp of stardom, and he’ll fully get there in 2024.

LT Paris Johnson Jr.

Yep, another second-year player—that Ossenfort guy must’ve had a pretty good first draft as GM. Johnson’s play wasn’t especially impressive in his rookie year (an average 60 PFF grade, for whatever that means to you), but he did play every single offensive snap, which *is* quite impressive. He also played most of the season at RT instead of LT, which was his projected position coming out of college. Well, he’ll be switching to LT this year and is saying all the right things. The man wants to be the next D.J. Humphries, which is hopefully his floor. If we can get steady LT play for the better part of a decade, we’d take it. But PJJ could—should?—be even better than Hump. And that will hopefully start with him fully coming into his own this year in an all-around improved Cardinals offense.

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Final Thoughts

If all of these players break out like they could, it could be a good season of football in the desert. Especially if we get one or two of those “out of nowhere” breakouts. It’s a good time to be a Cardinals fan.

Speaking of which, it’s time for you to weigh in. What do you think of these breakout candidates? Do you have any others in mind? Vote in the poll and drop a comment.

Poll

Which Cardinals player do you think is most ready to break out in 2024?

  • 0%
    LB Mack Wilson Sr.

    (0 votes)

  • 0%
    EDGE BJ Ojulari

    (0 votes)

  • 0%
    WR Michael Wilson

    (0 votes)

  • 0%
    TE Trey McBride

    (0 votes)

  • 0%
    LT Paris Johnson Jr.

    (0 votes)

  • 0%
    Other (explain in comments)

    (0 votes)



0 votes total

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