Cardinals won’t be in revenge game against former pass rusher

(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Haason Reddick
(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Haason Reddick /

When they take on the Carolina Panthers this weekend, the Arizona Cardinals will be taking on their former linebacker, Haason Reddick.

Remember when Haason Reddick was selected by the Arizona Cardinals in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft?

A complete stunner of a move, Cardinals general manager Steve Keim selected the linebacker out of Temple of all places instead of drafting a backup for Carson Palmer, who’d retire at the end of the 2017 season. From that point on, Reddick did not do much for Arizona. That was until last season when he set the team’s single-game record for sacks with five.

The decision to as whether or not to keep him after that performance ballooned his sack total to 12 on the year was one of the hottest topics for Cardinals fans. And then Markus Golden came back, J.J. Watt chose Arizona, Isaiah Simmons has blossomed, and Zaven Collins was drafted on top of that.

So when the Carolina Panthers travel to Arizona this week, some are assuming Reddick’s return will certainly make the matchup a revenge game. But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Sunday vs. the Carolina Panthers is not a revenge game since Haason Reddick didn’t do anything with the Arizona Cardinals

Who would’ve thought picking a small school linebacker in the first round would actually contribute to this Cardinals team that had already started to decline? Reddick’s selection is one of Keim’s worst first-round draft picks in his tenure.

Reddick was terrible in pass coverage, allowing at least a 71 percent completion rate when targeted, and that’s including this year as well. There are also the 22 missed tackles in his first two seasons in the desert. Reddick also struggled with bringing down opponents after the catch, as his YAC yards were a big component of the total yards he gave up.

One could argue the only reason he has eight sacks on the season is that the Panthers’ offense is a shaggy-dog story ever since the end of Week 3.

It’s nice to see Reddick succeed in Carolina on the human side of things. But when it comes to the matchup on Sunday, he didn’t do anything before and most likely won’t don’t do anything against his former team.

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Rodney Hudson, it’s time to get your guys in the right spot to neutralize any extra motivation he may have. As for Reddick, have fun tackling this offensive juggernaut.