At the beginning of the 2023 season, few had a high opinion of anyone from the Arizona Cardinals offense. Had you asked a random NFL fan who the unit’s biggest impact player was, they probably would have responded with running back James Conner since quarterback Kyler Murray was still on injured reserve, or to be more accurate, the PUP list.
Few, if any, would have named tight end Trey McBride, who was coming off of a solid half-season in relief for the then-injured Zach Ertz. Outside of Cardinals circles, most fans probably wouldn’t have known who Trey McBride was unless they followed the NFC West.
Such is the case when you’re a rookie playing decent but unspectacular football for a team that finished 4-13. This year, the script has flipped, and Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com revealed that McBride is well in the running for the 2024 Pro Bowl among tight ends. Urban also had something else to reveal about McBride’s production this season:
"“McBride has 56 receptions for 610 yards and two touchdowns this season, and with four games left, his next reception will set the franchise record for most tight end catches in a season.”"- Darren Urban
Arizona Cardinals tight end has put the NFL on notice
When you think of the most productive tight ends in Cardinals history, guys like Jackie Smith, Freddie Jones, and Jay Novacek come to mind. McBride is about to surpass all of them as far as single-season numbers go. Ironically, Ertz currently shares the franchise record with 56 catches in a season with McBride and Jackie Smith, per Stat Muse.
The site has former fullback Larry Centers as the tight end with the most receptions in one season, but as you know, Centers was not a tight end, so the record currently sits with Smith, McBride, and Ertz. While the Cardinals have an ultra-tough matchup coming their way vs. the San Francisco 49ers, it’s almost a foregone conclusion that McBride will set a new Arizona Cardinals record this season for receptions.
(Statistics also provided by Pro-Football-Reference)