The Arizona Cardinals’ defensive line will be tasked with doing a better job against the run in 2022.
The run defense was a major problem last season, and many of those issues originated in the lack of stopping power along the defensive line.
Allowing an average run of 4.6 yards and almost 2,000 yards on the ground is not a recipe for sustained success. Moreover, it significantly impairs the ability of the secondary to defend through the air as well.
Even with these issues, the team only made one real move with this position group signing free agent Kingsley Keke. This could be an underrated signing, as he is ranked 43rd out of 109 NFL interior defenders by PFF.
They re-signed DE Michael Dogbe, and DT Corey Peters is still unsigned today.
The major hopes for this group will have to be that J.J. Watt is healthy and available through the entirety of next season. Additionally, it has to be hoped that Watt will mentor the young players at the position like Zach Allen, Leki Fotu, and Rashard Lawrence and that they will grow into their roles.
Better, Equal, or Worse?
This one is a bit hard to judge, considering so much has to be assumed about the health of Watt, but the addition of Keke is interesting, and he brings some additional tools to the room to supplement the other young players.
Overall, I would judge this position group to be Equal. No better, no worse.