The Cardinals are an up-and-coming team, with some great pieces on offense. Kyler Murray has shown his ability to keep defenses guessing, with his ability to throw deep or get out of the pocket with his legs. The front office have made that into more of a strength, adding some veterans during Free Agency. The addition of AJ Green will depend on what version they are getting of him, and his ability to stay on the field. The addition of Rodney Hudson was incredibly helpful for Murray. Hudson is one of the better centers in the NFL, and should help the protection on the line of scrimmage.
One thing that could hold back the team in real life is the toughness of the overall division, with any of them having a roster that is strong enough to make the playoffs. However, from a fantasy perspective, there is plenty to get excited about.
2021 Fantasy Preview Arizona Cardinals- Projected Depth Chart
- Kyler Murray: Murray is going to be one of the highest-scoring players at the position. His dual-threat ability gives him a solid weekly floor at the position, while the elite play of DeAndre Hopkins gives him a great week-to-week ceiling. The team brought in Rodney Hudson who should give Murray much-needed protection and help in identifying defensive schemes at the line.
- DeAndre Hopkins: Hopkins continued his elite player straight away after his trade from Houston. Commanding the same level of targets with a much better QB than he has had previously in his career has meant that he has continued to be at the top of the position in scoring. In a second year in the offense, we should see more (if not the same) along with a potential increase in TDs.
- Chase Edmonds: Edmonds could well be the lead back for the team come the start of the season, but the addition of Conner is going to do something to the overall role. My current expectation for Edmonds is to be used in a similar way to previous seasons, but with more carries mixed in.
- James Conner: Conner was added to the team during free agency, to replace the departing Kenyan Drake. Conner currently looks to be playing second fiddle to Edmonds, but it could be that the team actually view them to be similar and split the work. Conner has been an effective
Keep an eye on
- Christian Kirk: Kirk has become a role player in the offense. Until the draft, it was expected that he would fill the slot role in the offense, with Larry Fitzgerald retiring. However, with the team drafting Rondale Moore in the second round, that has muddied the situation. We could see Kirk working on the outside rotating in with AJ Green, or see him start in the slot, with Moore on the sidelines. Either way, he should have a role in the offense week to week as a depth piece at least.
- AJ Green: Last season, it was painful to see what Green had become. He struggled to make an impact on the field, and didn’t look to be the elite player he was previously in his career. However, despite that, the Cardinals decided to bring him into the fold. Green should enjoy secondary coverage when on the field, opposite Hopkins. That reduced attention could be what Green needs to get back to a good level of play.
- Rondale Moore: Moore was selected in the draft, as part of an already crowded receiver room on the team. Whether they look to put him straight into the rotation or break him in slowly, there is a role in this offense that Moore can fill. Given the personnel the team has, he feels like he might break into the lineup midway through the season, rather than be an immediate fantasy option.
***Note: All projections and discussions are assuming full PPR formats.***
2021 Fantasy Preview Arizona Cardinals- Stat Projections
***Note Player Projections are only fantasy relevant players. Team totals may not add up as we left out players that may not have a significant impact on the season. Projections provided by Rich King and is based on 16 games.***
|Rush Att||Rush Yards||Rush TDs||Passing Att||Passing Yards||Passing TDs||Total Yards||Total TDs|
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Image Credit: Mark J. Rebilas – USA TODAY Sports