Five Cardinals Set to Break Out in 2014
After a 10-6 record in 2013, the Arizona Cardinals look set to make a playoff run 2014. Here are five players that are set to break out and lead the charge for the Cards.
G Jonathan Cooper
As the seventh overall pick in last year’s draft, guard Jonathan Cooper had a stellar camp and preseason. But unfortunately, Cooper broke his leg in the Cards third preseason game and missed the entire season. Cooper looks primed to make a return this year, and resume the Pro Bowl caliber play he showed in the limited time he had on the field.
T Bobby Massie
Bobby Massie was a fourth-round pick in the 2012 draft. After being thrust into action due to injuries and poor play on the offensive line in 2012, Massie initially struggled. But after a few weeks of experience, Massie turned into one of the best right tackles of the 2012 season. Prior to the 2013 season, the team signed Eric Winston who started over Massie, but now that Winston looks to be headed to free agency, look for Massie to shine in his starting role.
ILB Kevin Minter
As a second-round pick this year, Kevin Minter looked ready to take over the starting inside linebacker role. However, when the team signed Karlos Dansby and he played at a level that had him in the Defensive Player of the Year discussion, Minter spent most of his playing time on special teams and on the bench. However, Dansby is headed to free agency, and if the Cardinals can’t manage to resign him, Minter will be thrust into the starting role, and will be hungry to prove why he should have started from day one.
RB Andre Ellington
Andre Ellington is ready to have a huge year. He showed flashes of greatness every time he stepped onto the field this season, but his playing time was cut short by starter Rashard Mendenhall, and by Bruce Arians’ concern that too many carries would get the 200-pound back injured. Ellington has expressed his plan to gain 15 pounds this offseason, and with Rashard Mendenhall’s contract expiring, Ellington is ready to become the franchise back that the Cardinals have been looking for.
WR Michael Floyd
In his second year in the league, Michael Floyd flourished. He led the team in receiving yards, with over 1,000 on the season. However, you can expect an even bigger year from Floyd this year. It will be his second year working with Carson Palmer, and Floyd will be entering his third season in the league. This season, Floyd will make the transition from a good #2 wide receiver to receiver 1B next to Larry Fitzgerald.
Sports-Kings Down and Distance contributor Dylan Veltkamp @DylanVeltkampSK
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