Now that the pads have come on, Arizona Cardinals training camp is in full force and things are just now heating up as the Redbirds prepare for their first preseason game next week. But that doesn’t mean a few players haven’t already set themselves apart from the pack.
Below, you will meet three young players - two rookies and a veteran who really hasn’t had much of a chance, turn a few heads during the early going. These are names that have popped up time and again over the past week, and if they stay healthy, you may be hearing about them even more.
3 Arizona Cardinals already turning heads in camp
1 - Noah Togiai, TE
One of my five underrated players slated to shine in camp, Noah Togiai has been outstanding so far both as a blocker and as a pass-catcher. Togiai is also in a perfect position to take advantage of an opportunity not only at H-back, where he’s been playing at times, but also at tight end, thanks to Trey McBride and Zach Ertz being limited or unable to participate.
In a worst-case scenario, Togiai could earn a spot on the team thanks to his blocking ability, which will work wonders in a run-first offense. But if he keeps making plays in camp, then the Cards have a solid consolation if Ertz is forced to miss time in the regular season.
2 - Michael Wilson, WR
Michael Wilson has been turning heads since mini-camp, and the big target from Stanford hasn’t stopped. In Tuesday’s practice, he got the best of the rangy Christian Matthew, a sign that Wilson could perform just fine against some of the game’s bigger corners.
While Matthew is a former seventh round pick, we also noted that he has been seeing time with the first team defense in the secondary. That said, Matthew has made strides of his own, so we’re seeing Wilson hanging in there with some decent corners.
3 - Clayton Tune, QB
There is hardly a practice that has gone by when we haven’t seen someone mention Clayton Tune’s name in a positive light. Tyler Drake of Arizona Sports reported that Tune saw time with the First Team offense on Tuesday and looked good, and that foreshadows well with my bold predictions regarding the rookie quarterback.
I expect Colt McCoy to remain the QB1 at least until the first preseason game, and likely the second. But if Tune keeps performing at a high level in camp, he will get an eventual crack in working with the First Team in a preseason game.
Source: New era notes: Pads come on, intensity ratchets up at Cardinals camp by Tyler Drake, Arizona Sports