Cardinals 53-Man Roster Projections

Arizona Cardinals defensive end Cap Capi (61) against the Los Angeles Chargers during a preseason game at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The final preseason game brings the race to fill out roster spots for every team around the NFL. The Arizona Cardinals finish their preseason schedule against the Broncos, but have until Saturday to make final roster cuts. Before the team plays their last tune-up game, here is a look at what the roster could look like after cuts on September 1st.

Quarterback (3)

Sam Bradford, Josh Rosen, Mike Glennon

The big question here is whether the veteran Glennon can hold of the young Chad Kanoff. Glennon was brought in to be the second quarterback heading into the season while a likely second or third round rookie learned the game. The selection of Rosen changed that, putting Glennon in a battle with the likely back-up of the future in Kanoff.

Running Back (3)

David Johnson, Chase Edmonds, TJ Logan

The injury to D.J. Foster shook things up in the running back room. Losing Foster means more playing time for T.J. Logan but also likely means the team keeps just three running backs. Rookie Chase Edmonds is slotted as the backup for David Johnson, but his lack of experience may prompt the team to bring in a veteran after final cuts.

Fullback (2)

Derrick Coleman, Elijhaa Penny

The Cardinals added some beef to the offensive backfield. The fullback position is something new but has already proved positive in the ground game. Coleman is the traditional fullback. Penny is a versatile option who has special teams ability.

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Wide Receiver (6)

Larry Fitzgerald, Brice Butler, J.J. Nelson, Christian Kirk, Chad Williams, Greg Little

Finding the team’s first four receivers is pretty simple with Fitzgerald, Butler, Kirk, and Williams getting the nod. Nelson and Little are included, but this is dependent on the team keeping Nelson on the roster heading into the season. Cutting Nelson would save nearly $1.5 million, although there are rumors the Patriots may be interested. Little has been the more consistent of the remaining receivers, but the special teams play of Trent Sherfield could cause the latter to take the last spot.

Tight End (3)

Ricky Seals-Jones, Gabe Homes, Jermaine Gresham

Gresham remains out with an injury. However, the veteran will be available at the beginning of the season. Offensive coordinator Mike McCoy enjoys two tight-end sets. Gresham and Seals-Jones will see plenty of time on the field. The Cardinals will likely look for another option at the third tight end spot but could keep Homes if no other options come up.

Offensive Line (9)

Andre Smith, Justin Pugh, Mason Cole, Mike Iupati, D.J. Humphries, John Wetzel, Evan Boehm, Daniel Munyer, Will Holden

When it comes to the offensive line, it is all about versatility. Munyer can play along the line but could be the last man out if the team finds someone after Saturday’s cuts.

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Defensive Tackle (4)

Corey Peters, Rodney Gunter, Olsen Pierre, Robert Nkemdiche

Peters is by far the best lineman against the run. Pierre has the makings of being a major talent and could take major steps this season. Nkemdiche is likely looking at his final chance to show his worth.

Defensive End (5)

Chandler Jones, Benson Mayowa, Vontarrius Dora, Cap Capi, Jacqueis Smith

The largest omission on the list is talented pass rusher Markus Golden. Golden continues to rehab and come back from his injury last season. He will be placed on the PUP list but this opens the spot for fan favorite Cap Capi. In his first three preseason games, Capi has registered four sacks and two forced fumbles. Capi has earned his spot.

Linebacker (5)

Deone Bucannon, Josh Bynes, Haason Reddick, Gerald Hodges, Dennis Gardeck

The starting unit is set with Bucannon, Bynes, and Reddick. Hodges is a solid depth linebacker and can assist on special teams alongside Gardeck.

Cornerback (5)

Patrick Peterson, Bene Benwikere, Jamar Taylor, Christian Campbell, Deatrick Nichols
The cornerback position has been murky for most of preseason. Free agent signing Benwikere has put his stamp as the third cornerback on the field. Taylor is the likely starter opposite of Peterson. Campbell and Nichols round out the unit on special teams but could see time in certain sub packages.

Safety (5)

Tre’ Boston, Rudy Ford, Budda Baker, Antoine Bethea, Ezekiel Turner

Boston has been a great addition to the defense. He and Baker are the likely starters ahead of veteran Bethea. Expect all three to be on the field in nickel packages. Ford and Turner are special team aces who will find a way to contribute.

Specialists (3)

Matthew McCrane (K), Andy Lee (P), Aaron Brewer (LS)

McCrane is a rookie out of Kansas State. He has shown a strong leg and more importantly been accurate. He is a cheaper option than veteran Phil Dawson, saving the team roughly $3 million. Dawson has struggled since coming to the desert and is likely to be searching for work after final cuts. Lee continues to be a talented punter with a monster leg. Brewer is a consistent long snapper and has made his share of tackles downfield.

Enjoy the last preseason game of 2018 and the fight to make the roster. What are your predictions for the final roster? Are there any surprises you’re expecting?

– Ryan Adverderada is the Managing Editor for Full Press Coverage Cardinals. Like and follow on and Facebook.


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