Arizona Cardinals from A to Z: J.J. Nelson
By Scott Allen
Player profile of WR J.J. Nelson as Arizona Cardinals training camp has opened
As we have reached the second week of Arizona Cardinals training camp, we continue our annual look at the roster player by player. I look at what they’ve done, where they are now and how I project each player’s status at the end of camp.
We go from A to Z and continue with WR J.J. Nelson. Nelson was drafted in the fifth-round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Cardinals out of the University of Alabama-Birmingham.
2014 season: 38.3 yards. As a kickoff returner, that’s all you need to know. That was his average yards-per-return in 2014. That lead the NCAA and ended up being the fifth all-time in NCAA history. He was 10th in NCAA punt returns with a 10.7 yards-per-return average. He was 10th in all-purpose yardage with 1,820 yards. He had three 100 plus yard receiving games last season.
2015 season projection: I don’t know how he doesn’t make the team, at least from a special teams standpoint? He ran the fastest 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine back in February at 4.28 seconds. He has already shown his quickness in training camp practice. He’s fast off the line of scrimmage. He is projected to be the Cardinals number five receiver, for now.
The praise has been high for Nelson during the first week of practice from both coach Bruce Arians and quarterback Carson Palmer. Those are the two guys, if you are Nelson, that you want to hear the praise from. I think he’s solidified a spot, even before the first preseason game this upcoming Saturday night. It’s just a matter of where on the depth chart he falls and how much time he sees on special teams.
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