The Arizona Cardinals wrapped up its offseason program on June 8 and open training camp on July 29 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Here’s a 53-man roster projection:
Analysis: Palmer and Stanton are gimmes. With a full offseason in the system, Barkley will be ready in case of an emergency.
Analysis: The only thing different in this year’s running-back room compared with last year’s may be the order in which they sit, with David Johnson leaping past Ellington in order of importance.
Analysis: The Cardinals have had the right pieces at wide receiver for the last few years. It’ll take a star to break into this room.
Analysis: These are the four best but last year’s Mr. Irrelevant, Gerald Christian, may end up knocking Niklas out of the way because of his special-teams ability.
Analysis: Watford’s flexibility gives the Cardinals the ability to dress seven players. If they need an eighth, look to Antoine McClain to make the cut.
Analysis: Defensive line is, by far, the deepest position on the roster. With Peters returning from an Achilles injury and the maturation of Williams and Gunter last season, Red Bryant may find himself on the outside looking in.
Analysis: General manager Steve Keim has a bevy of outside linebackers to choose from to bolster a pass rush that was subpar last season, but in this rendition, Shaq Riddick doesn’t make the cut. I think Okpalaugo will show he’s capable of adjusting to the NFL when the Cards go in pads.
Defensive backs (10): CB Justin Bethel, CB Cariel Brooks, CB Harlan Miller, CB Patrick Peterson, CB Brandon Williams, S Tyvon Branch, S Deone Bucannon, S Tony Jefferson, S Tyrann Mathieu, S D.J. Swearinger
Analysis: Arizona will rely a lot on youth at cornerback but their depth at safety will be among the best in the NFL.
Analysis: Picking Dillon over Kameron Canaday was a coin flip. It’s too early to tell which long snapper will make the team because neither has faced a true rush. Wait until training camp for a leader to emerge.