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Pro Football Focus ranks Cardinals backfield third in NFL

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Sam Bradford (9) hands off to running back David Johnson (31) during the first day of NFL football training camp, Saturday, July 28, 2018, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)

Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson has a new role with the team and high expectations going into the 2018 season. In just his fourth year, he’s become one of the faces of the franchise following a 2016 breakout season.

This season, Pro Football Focus ranks the Cardinals backfield the third-best in the league. All of that has to do with Johnson.

While Johnson has yet to receive a new contract extension offer, he still showed up to training camp ready to go.

More importantly, he is healthy.

The 26-year-old missed 15 games last season with a wrist injury and the Cardinals still managed to finish 8-8.

Johnson’s ability to be a dual-threat on the field solidifies him as one of the best, according to PFF.

His 90.0 receiving grade was the highest of any full-time running back. Johnson is also one of the few backs capable of running legitimate receiver routes as he spent nearly 20 percent of his snaps that season from the slot or split wide.

In his breakout 2016 season, Johnson finished with 80 catches for 879 total yards. The former All-Pro that year also ran for over 1200 yards and 16 rushing touchdowns.

With a new coaching staff led by head coach Steve Wilks and offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, and new quarterbacks in Sam Bradford and rookie Josh Rosen, Johnson steps into an unfamiliar veteran leadership role and will be looked at to resemble what he was in his All-Pro season.

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