Cardinals' defensive leaders call players-only meeting

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TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) -- The leaders of Arizona's embattled defense called a players-only meeting to address the unit's lousy performance a week ago.

Pro Bowl cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie says the session, called by outside linebacker Joey Porter, among others, was held before practice on Wednesday.

He says the veterans told their defensive teammates that they have to step it up, that "when somebody punches us in the mouth we've got to be ready to punch back."

The Cardinals surrendered 444 yards in last Sunday's 41-7 rout at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons.

Arizona will play its home opener Sunday against the Oakland Raiders.

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