Arizona Cardinals position grades: The offensive line wasn’t as bad as you thought

The Arizona Cardinals offensive line wasn’t awful in 2023, as the team doesn’t boast the league’s fourth-best rushing offense without some solid blocking.

Seattle Seahawks v Arizona Cardinals
Seattle Seahawks v Arizona Cardinals / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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The Arizona Cardinals offensive line did its due diligence in opening holes for quite a few capable running backs this season. And while the likes of James Conner, Michael Carter, and Emari Demercado, among others, have their unique talents, the offensive line still deserves credit for the Redbirds finishing fourth in rushing offense

However, we can’t say the same for their ability to pass block, as it seemed no matter who played quarterback, they were often forced to scramble away from pressure. While the Cardinals offensive line allowed just 42 sacks, which ranked 14th-highest in the league, they also allowed a sack percentage of 7.0, which was tied for the 12th-highest.

Much of this poor pass blocking came from the left side of the line, where D.J. Humphries struggled while left guard never boasted a solid starter thanks to injuries and the lack of anyone holding the position down when they were healthy. However, this shouldn’t define the entire unit, as Hjalte Froholdt, Will Hernandez, and Paris Johnson all enjoyed solid 2023 campaigns.

The Arizona Cardinals offensive line wasn’t completely terrible

While the offensive line wasn’t as hopeless in 2023 as you may think thanks to their ability to provide solid run blocking and the fact they didn’t finish top-10 in the league for the highest number of sacks and sack percentages, they must still fix the left side. Therefore, as the NFL Draft draws nearer, expect a lot of talk about general manager Monti Ossenfort fixing the left side of the Redbirds line.

As for the overall grade in 2023, the Arizona Cardinals line receives a ‘C+’, since you can’t help but give them an ‘A’ in the run blocking realm, even if their ability to pass block was below average and hovered around a ‘D.’ However, they were nowhere near the worst line in football - that would be the New York Giants - and the Redbirds may also be just two players away from possessing one of the league’s better units.

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(Statistics provided by Pro-Football-Reference)