2014 Positional Analysis: Arizona Cardinals Offensive Line

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C Lyle Sendlein 

Nov 2, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer (3) at the line of scrimmage with center Lyle Sendlein (63) against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Arizona beat Dallas 28-17. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Stats: 16 games|1 sack allowed| 11 QB hits allowed

Lyle Sendlein was a Cardinal since 2007, started 109 games, and was active in the local community. There’s no doubt that the Cardinals had to make a tough call in releasing him. To be fair, his 2014 was pretty atrocious.

PFF graded Sendlein as the second worst overall center. He struggled mightily, and was uncharacteristically bad in run blocking especially. This obviously contributed to Arizona’s inability to run inside. Without a center who can successfully open up areas in the A gap, interior rushing becomes much harder, especially for non-power backs like Andre Ellington.

The importance of Sendlein’s leadership obviously can’t be determined by stats. Before his release, Bruce Arians was asked about Sendlein and he said “Lyle’s the kind of guy you want on your football team”. Apparently, he was not wanted enough to pay $4.275 after  a horrible season. His departure leaves a void at center that has not existed in Arizona for a few years. After a horrible 2014 season, Sendlein’s time with Arizona came to a bit of a sad end.