Three Arizona Cardinals poised for a breakout season in 2021
Simmons saw limited playing time during the first seven games of 2020. Against the Seattle Seahawks in week seven, he played just five snaps, but made perhaps the Play of the Game and even the Play of the Year had it not been for a Hail Murray a few weeks later.
Over the first seven games, Simmons had just 13 combined tackles. Just 10 tackles if you’re counting solo only. Over the final nine games, his playing time increased substantially and he responded with 41 combined tackles, and 2 sacks.
With De’Vondre Campbell potentially leaving in free agency, Simmons may take over a full-time starting role on defense. But even if Campbell stays, Simmons can continue his role as a utility. He can play multiple positions. And with a season of experience under his belt following a stellar second half of 2020, it may be a foreshadowing of things to come in 2021.
Regardless if Simmons plays inside linebacker exclusively or if he lines up all over the field, expect him to look more like the eighth overall selection. And expect him to anchor a prominent role on defense for seasons to come.