Sep 22, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Arizona Cardinals offensive tackle Bradley Sowell (79) walks off the field at the conclusion of their game against the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports
Who Is Bradley Sowell? I think the Cardinal fans all over the Valley are asking this question, wondering do we have something better than the ex-left tackle Levi Brown after he was traded today to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Most fans would shout a resounding absolute yes! During the course of the season I had heard chatter of most fans saying “anything is better than Levi Brown” and that may have been true.
But when you hear Head Coach Bruce Arians say at that time “If there was someone better than Levi he would have been playing”
I wonder now, has Bradley Sowell just got better over the course of 3 weeks and is now better than Levi Brown? Well, it’s too late to ask now; he has been forced into the spotlight and will be on display this Sunday at home to the Carolina Panthers.
The Panthers have a good defensive line that can really rush the quarterback, just ask Eli Manning, who was sacked six times in the 1st half alone. It will be a tall task for the second year left tackle after three weeks of learning the Cardinals scheme. I think that when the Cardinals signed Sowell they were grooming him in practice until he was ready to step in and take the job from Levi, in other words it was inevitable.
So who is Bradley Sowell? He is a left tackle that played his college ball for University of Mississippi, where he started in all but one of the 37 total games, then moved on to pursue his professional football career.
Ended up as an undrafted free agent and was picked up by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2012.
Five months later he was waived by the Buccaneers and of course cleared waivers 3 days later and was signed back with the Buccaneers on their practice squad.
That says a lot about an undrafted free agent’s talent level, that coaches seen enough to say that he may be able to make it in this league, there has to be some talent there to even get that opportunity.
In fact, Sowell must have showed great promise as the Indianapolis Colts picked him up from the Buccaneers practice squad 8 days later.
Coaches watch tape on every player on every team during pre-season and this kid impressed enough to beat out all of the other undrafted free agent left tackles that were trying to make a team.
Sowell was not just picked up by the Colts as a bench warmer or for the practice squad; he was thrown right into game action as a reserved left tackle, and also played on special teams. He was featured in spot duty in 10 games as a part of the magical season the Colts had in 2012 under Interim Head Coach Bruce Arians, who of course is his head coach now.
Sowell also played in the Wild Card Playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens last year, a game where the Colts offense put up a staggering 419 yards against one of the very best defenses in Baltimore, that I’m sure yielded some big game experience that can go a long way for this kid. Sowell held his ground in that back up role and judging by his upside he must be ready for the big time in Arizona.
Only time and game reps will tell, but you don’t just put anyone in this position knowing that it is the most important position on the offensive line, knowing that he is the blanket for the backside of the quarterback.
He must have showed some promise in practice to force this move and I hope that the coaching staff is right, but then again how much worse can he be from what we have displayed at that position for the last few years.