Although it was pretty much that way in 2013, officially Arizona Cardinals General Manager Steve Keim said the Cards won’t rely on just one running back in 2014. His reasoning is that the Cards want to avoid injury. I get it. They practically ran the offense that way in 2013 but to flat out admit it is a little surprising.
So what does this mean for Rashard Mendenhall, who is a free agent? In my opinion it could mean there is a better chance of him returning. The Cards also have Andre Ellington, Stepfan Taylor, and Alfonso Smith. If the Cards don’t retain Mendenhall, I can almost certainly suspect they will draft someone. I honestly can’t see anyone in free agency coming over and helping the way the Cards want that guy to help.
Many clamored for Ellington to get more snaps in 2013 including yours truly. I get wanting to avoid injury however what consistency can a player build up if he’s only in part of the time. I think in Ellington’s case it could workout given he can catch the ball too. The jury is still out on Taylor and we play a waiting game with Mendenhall.
Speaking of oft-injured running backs, officially Ryan Williams is still on the roster too. I could be interesting if he plays any roll at all in the decision-making. They haven’t let him loose yet. That could change in the next couple of months but as of now he’s still a Cardinal.