Arizona Cardinals: Defeat Denver Broncos, cuts loom

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The Arizona Cardinals defeated the Denver Broncos 22-20 in the final preseason game

20. 45. 22. 32. Final

It wasn’t pretty but then again it was more about the performances on the field than the final score for the Arizona Cardinals and Denver Broncos on Thursday night.  The game itself saw the Cardinals defeat the Broncos 22-20 to finish the preseason 2-2.

Now the Cardinals must cut their roster down to 53-players by 1:00 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.  The formation of a practice squad will follow within the days that follow.

We take a look at the positions where there was still the most competition and where the player stand in my view after Thursday night.


My original projection was that the Cardinals would keep two quarterbacks and it would come down to Phillip Sims, who started Thursday night, and Logan Thomas.  Thomas played the second half on Thursday night.

Sims gets a B- from me for Thursday night.  I don’t think he did enough to make the final 53.  Did he do enough to win a practice squad spot?  Maybe.  Thomas, who I give a B+ for Thursday night, had a nice touchdown pass to receiver J.J. Nelson in the second half.  Thomas went 9-10 for 116 yards and one touchdown.

I thought Thomas might have held the ball too long a couple of times but overall I thought he did well Thursday night.  Was it enough to erase the mediocre preseason and camp?  Again, maybe.  Sims didn’t do himself any favors though.  At least he certainly didn’t separate himself like many thought he would.

Final prediction: Thomas on practice squad, Sims cut.

Running back:

Chris Johnson ran pretty well for his first game.  I’d say he gets a B for Thursday night.  He rushed 11 times for 45 yards but got 16 of those yard on one carry.  He’s not in danger of being cut at this point.  He showed enough to stick around.  Kerwynn Williams ran seven times for 32 yards and a touchdown to help his cause.  Stepfan Taylor ran three times for 12 yards.

My original prediction had Taylor making it and Williams being cut.  I am sticking with that prediction, though it’s close.


Another tough spot for coaches.  J.J. Nelson certainly cemented his spot on the roster.  What about Jaron Brown?  I think so.  Jaxon Shipley?  Brittan Golden?  Very close but ultimately I think Golden wins the spot IF they keep six receivers.  Shipley will get a practice squad spot either in Arizona or with another team.  You haven’t heard the last of either Shipley or Golden.

Tight end:

Now the real tough question is who is healthy enough to make the initial 53-man roster?  Rookie Gerald Christian was projected to make the squad but now he could be facing a long-term injury suffered Thursday night.  No news yet.  If he’s injured though, Fells and Momah are your only healthy tight ends.  Jermaine Gresham and Troy Niklas will both make the squad.  I originally thought Gresham might not but numbers say they will need him if he is healthy enough.

Next: Tough decisions on defense as well