Part 2 of our breakdown of the Arizona Cardinals roster consists of looking at players we have that are deemed to be the “future” of the franchise. So, who falls under this category?
Last time we looked at the ‘Elite’ Arizona Cardinals players and today we’re moving onto those players who could one day be considered as such – or simply be cornerstones of the roster for years to come.
THE FOTF –
Another group of young guys here that have shown a lot of positive signs in their short-ish time in the desert.
Maybe one day they’ll be considered ‘elite’ but, for now at least, they’re the foundations of the Arizona Cardinals’ future – the FUTURE OF THE FRANCHISE.
Markus Golden, OLB – On one side, the Cardinals have the elite Chandler Jones. On the other, a rising star that many on the internet thought was “a massive reach.”
Well, the haters were proved wrong and Golden had a spectacular sophomore season before his 3rd season was cut short with the dreaded ACL injury.
If he bounces back, he’s bound to be a key player in the Arizona Cardinals’ future.
Budda Baker, SS – The Arizona Cardinals obviously loved Budda a lot in the 2017 NFL Draft class, because they traded away several selections to ensure they could pick him up in the 2nd round.
So far, so good – though he was used sparingly earlier in his rookie season, he has taken full advantage of an injury to Tyvon Branch to showcase his ability.
On the field he reminds me a lot of a pre-injury Tyrann Mathieu – if he can reach the levels that Tyrann has in the past, maybe we could have yet another exceptional talent on the defensive side of the ball.
DJ Humphries, LT – DJ Humphries has had a rollercoaster ride of a career to date – inactive all of his rookie season and with a poor attitude that earned him the “knee deep” moniker, thrown into action in an unusual RT position before injuries saw him flipped back over to his more-natural LT position…before injury cut short this season.
He’s shown flashes of being the franchise LT for years to come (which is more than some first-round selections!) so he earns a spot here. If he can figure out how not to get injured almost every week…
Haason Reddick, LB – Another first-round selection but one who was thrown into action from the get-go due to injuries in the defence.
The former college DE was drafted to play LB for the Cardinals but was then switched to the outside when Golden went down with his season-ending injury.
He’s a player that has played a lot, but not had many stand-out moments so far in his rookie campaign…still, as a first-round selection, you’re hoping he’s going to be a cornerstone of the Cardinals franchise going forward.
Deone Bucannon, $LB – Deone Bucannon is a player that the Cardinals invented a position for, given his status as a hybrid linebacker/defensive back he’s now down as a “dollar linebacker”.
Whatever they call him, he’s a guy that’s already shown to be a productive player on the Cardinals defence and likely to earn a lot of dollars when the franchise is able to extend his rookie deal – unless they don’t see him as worth it?
Ricky Seals-Jones, TE – Seeing as offensive players have been pretty outnumbered on this section, allow me to add another for consideration.
Sure, he’s only had a handful of games on the main roster but he has shown himself to be a handful for many a defender.
In a position that has had nothing but disappointment in it, perhaps RSJ could have a big future on the offence.
Or he could flame out and be released in the off-season…who knows?
Evan Boehm, C/G – OK, so Boehm has had a rough start to his time in Arizona.
The former college Centre has seen a massive, AQ Shipley-shaped roadblock in his way at the position in Arizona so has had to move out to RG to get game time.
He’s had an up=and-downtime of it there, but I’m interested to see how he does if he ever gets the opportunity to be the Cardinals’ C.
If he works out there then, coupled with DJH at LT, that would give Arizona 40% of an offensive line.
Which is good by usual standards.