After much discussion during the offseason the Arizona Cardinals decided offensive tackle reinforcements were not a necessity
The 24th pick of the 2015 draft was in, the Arizona Cardinals had made their selection. In somewhat of a surprise, offensive tackle D.J. Humphries’ name was called.
What made the pick surprising was that offensive tackle wasn’t an immediate need. For the Cards’ sake it was a good thing that it wasn’t.
Humphries failed to dress for any regular or post-season game. Not the norm for a first-round pick to say the least. Had the Cardinals botched the pick?
While Jared Veldheer remains entrenched at left tackle, right tackle Bobby Massie has fled the desert. A starting position had opened up for this season and Humphries was next in line to fill the void. The team has basically handed a very important job to a player with zero regular season NFL experience.
Humphries is one part of the revamped right side of Arizona’s line. The signing of ultra-experienced right guard Evan Mathis is a brilliant move. He is arguably the best run-blocking guard in the league and also the perfect mentor for the inexperienced Humphries.
Humphries held up very well in the preseason. The physicality of his run-blocking was especially noticeable. There have been rough spots in his pass-blocking but, overall, mistakes were minimal.
Up until recently, capable veteran Will Beatty remained available. The fact that management didn’t even bring him in for insurance shows the faith they have in the second-year pro. Despite rumors of the Cards being interested in Beatty, he was never brought in for a visit.
The season is now upon us and it’s time for Humphries to reward the team for having faith in him. A big difference this offseason has been his maturity. Here’s hoping he has grown into the man they wanted him to be when they drafted him.