Voted the 14th best player in the league (which seems really low for him), Fitzgerald has ties with Haley. First, Haley's from the Pennsylvania area and Fitzgerald went to Pittsburgh. Second, Haley eventually coached Fitzgerald while with the Cardinals.
"Being a Pittsburgh guy, growing up in Western PA, and my father's a Pittsburgh guy, played at Pitt, I always pay attention to the Panthers
," Haley said. "All of a sudden, you had this guy who looked like he was going to be pretty good.
"I was coaching receivers with the Cowboys
at the time so I had done a significant amount of film work on Larry and gave him a good grade, a real good grade but probably not good enough. At the Combine we did an interview with him and I said, 'What are your goals?' He said, 'I want to be the greatest ever.'
"And I said, 'Well you don't block like it. I don't ever see you open.'
"We got to Arizona a few years later and he said, 'I remember you coach.' We kind of got into it right there but it ended up being a good connection for us."
That sounds about right. One of the best receiver prospects to ever come out of college and Haley tells him he's not much of a blocker. WR Dwayne Bowe can empathize with Fitz.