Addition of top-level center shows that Arizona Cardinals have a pulse

General manager Monti Ossenfort acquired savvy veteran Pat Elflein to take over as the anchor of the Arizona Cardinals offensive line.

Atlanta Falcons v Carolina Panthers
Atlanta Falcons v Carolina Panthers / Lance King/GettyImages
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Throughout the entire offseason, a large percentage of Arizona Cardinals followers have been clamoring for a top-notch center. With training camp literally just hours away, first-year general manager Monti Ossenfort has finally given the "Red Sea" what they were asking for.

On Tuesday, the Cards added veteran blocker Pat Elflein to the offensive line mix. The team was in desperate need of some experience at center, and now they have it. The 29-year-old Elflein has been credited with 64 starts, far more than any other candidate for the position in the Arizona locker room.

Following an outstanding collegiate career at Ohio State University, Elflein entered the NFL as a third-round draft pick of the Minnesota Vikings back in 2017. During his three-plus campaigns with the Vikes, the 6 foot 3, 303 pounder started 28 games at center. Elflein was moved to left guard in 2019, where he was credited with 15 starts for Minnesota.

Veteran Pat Elflein brings credibility to the center position for the Arizona Cardinals

Following a short stint with the New York Jets in late 2020 (six starts at left guard), Elflein inked a three-year deal with the Carolina Panthers in March of 2021. Unfortunately, injuries limited the Ohio native to just 15 starts in his two seasons with the club. Elflein was released by Carolina back in March, a move which opened the door for the Cardinals to acquire the veteran's services.

For the past four months, Arizona has been trying to convince their fanbase that Hjalte Froholdt could anchor the squad's offensive line. That was a little hard to believe, when you consider the fact that the native of Denmark had been in the starting lineup a measly six times during his professional career.

Elflein is also a clear-cut upgrade over other Redbirds centers such as Lecitus Smith and rookie Jon Gaines II. After weeks of inactivity, Ossenfort has finally come to life with a badly-needed addition. If Cardinals fans get their way, several more free-agent acquisitions will be following Elflein to the desert in the coming weeks.

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