Arizona Cardinals duo taking up valuable roster spots
By Jim Koch
There are two players on the Arizona Cardinals roster who have yet to earn the right to be in the National Football League
Arizona Cardinals special teams coordinator Jeff Rodgers needs to be asked a question. It has to do with the team’s 2018 kickoff return unit. Any Cardinals fan who has seen this contingent in action should know exactly where this is going.
Why in the world is Rodgers using Brandon Williams to run back kickoffs? It’s getting extremely tiring watching the former third-round draft pick run up the middle of the field, only to get brought down at the Cards’ own 15-yard line. It’s almost as if the organization is desperate to get something, anything, out of Williams, instead of just admitting that the 2016 draftee was an outright mistake.
It wasn’t long into Williams’ rookie campaign that a determination was made. Arizona’s head coach back in ’16, Bruce Arians, quickly realized that the cornerback couldn’t cover anyone. Williams was replaced swiftly, and has logged very little time on defense ever since.
Another selection from the 2016 draft has also been incredibly unproductive. It’s now crystal clear why Robert Nkemdiche almost tumbled completely out of that year’s first round. The Cards prevented that from happening by taking the defensive tackle with the 29th-overall pick, and have gotten very little in return.
Nagging injuries have kept Nkemdiche sidelined for a significant portion of his three-year NFL career. Now healthy, the former University of Mississippi star was just benched because of ineffectiveness. Nkemdiche conceded his job to Rodney Gunter this past Thursday, which may be an indication that his days in the desert are now numbered.
Cardinals’ general manager Steve Keim would do the franchise a favor by parting ways with Williams and Nkemdiche. Countless highly-touted prospects have failed to make their mark in the league throughout the years. Williams and Nkemdiche certainly fall into that category.