Tight end has become a major part of the Cardinals offense
By Jim Koch
The addition of Trey McBride indicates that the tight end is rapidly becoming a featured part of the Arizona Cardinals offense.
Those who follow the Arizona Cardinals were blindsided this past Thursday night when the team traded away its first-round pick. The deal that brought Marquise “Hollywood” Brown to the desert was a stunner, but the Cards’ front office wound up and threw another curveball to the fans just 24 hours later.
With the 55th-overall selection of the 2022 NFL Draft, Arizona elected to grab the highest-ranked tight end in the nation. Trey McBride, a 6-foot-4, 260-pounder out of Colorado State University, provides quarterback Kyler Murray with yet another pass-receiving option. Does the acquisition of the youngster indicate that the Cardinals are ready to make the tight end a major component of the “Air Raid” offense?
What made the move for McBride so surprising was the fact the Redbirds already have two productive tight ends on the roster. Both Zach Ertz and Maxx Williams are projected to play a significant role for the squad this coming fall, but keeping the talented McBride on the bench will not be easy.
Arizona Cardinals have a plethora of talent at the tight end position in 2022
McBride figures to be the third man on the depth chart when training camp gets underway in July. Ertz is the undisputed starter, with the scrappy Williams situated as the number-one backup. For the first time in years, the Cards have the firepower to implement a two-tight end attack on opposing defenses.
There’s a possibility that McBride could be thrown into the fire sooner rather than later. Williams is currently rehabbing the torn ACL he suffered last October. When asked about the 28-year-old’s status last week, head coach Kliff Kingsbury couldn’t give a prediction on when Williams would return.
Last fall, McBride hauled in an eye-popping 90 passes for 1,121 yards and a touchdown for the Rams. In his three previous collegiate campaigns, the Colorado native tallied 74 receptions, 979 receiving yards, and nine scores.
Arizona was thrilled that McBride was still available in round two, being that the organization had a much higher grade on the 22-year-old. At last, the Cardinals are placing value in a position that had been an underused part of the scoring attack for far too long.