The Arizona Cardinals had their last session of organized team activities Monday, and first round draft pick Jonathan Cooper has moved to a starting spot on the offensive line.
Cooper will start at left guard for Cardinals, the same position he played in college at North Carolina. As a result Daryn Colledge will move to the right side. Levi Brown, who suffered a season-ending torn right triceps injury last preseason, will return and play alongside Cooper on the line.
It seems the Cardinals want to keep their 6-foot-2, 311-pound rookie at the same spot he played for the Tar Heels and move Colledge, who is entering his ninth season, to the right side. Colledge has played most of his career at left guard with some time a center as well.
It will be a challenge for Colledge to switch, but having an eight-year veteran switch positions versus a rookie is a simple choice. The move from the left side to the right should not be too difficult once Colledge can get the fundamentals down.
Cooper has been getting familiar with the Arizona heat, as he has been in town for all of the OTAs and separate rookie workouts, although he has not signed a contract. Once the rookie can adjust to the speed and technical part of professional football, he can become a big asset to the Cards’ offense.
The mental aspect of the game is a giant leap from the college to pro level. Head coach Bruce Arians seems comfortable with the way Cooper is coming along, as he has gotten a huge amount of reps.
The Cardinals’ offensive line struggles are nothing new to the fans in Arizona, however this upcoming season could be brighter for the birds. With Arians’ new system, the Cardinals could see some success on the offensive side. The offensive line is shaping up nicely and will have a important job protecting quarterback Carson Palmer.