New Cardinals guard J.R. Sweezy: ‘I feel like I’m supposed to be here’
Mar 15, 2019, 2:15 PM | Updated: 2:16 pm
(Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)
When looking at the respective records of the Cardinals and the Seahawks in 2018, it would be fair to assume that the latter would be the more attractive destination for free agents this offseason.
This was not the case for new Cardinals guard J.R. Sweezy, though. The 29-year-old was officially introduced after finalizing his contract with Arizona on Friday, and according to him, the decision to leave Seattle and join the Cardinals was not a tough one at all.
“To an extent, yes, I could’ve made a choice to [stay in Seattle], but it wasn’t,” Sweezy said at his press conference when asked whether it was hard to leave the team he had spent the majority of his career with. “I feel like I’m supposed to be here. I got really good vibes about everything, and I’m just excited to get started.”
Sweezy started 15 games for the Seahawks last season in his return to the team after spending two years with the Buccaneers. He was named a Pro Bowl alternate for his efforts, and was a big reason as to why Seattle had the league’s top ranked rushing attack in 2018.
Sweezy is expected to play right guard, his primary position for every year of his career except last season, which will allow Justin Pugh to move back to his more natural position of left guard. According to Sweezy, he is comfortable with both, and will play wherever they need him to.
“I’m here to win ballgames, so whatever they want me to do, I’ll do it,” Sweezy said. “It’s as simple as that.”
Sweezy joins a revamped Cardinals offensive line, which features another new addition in Marcus Gilbert, whom they acquired from the Steelers earlier in the week. Last year’s injury-ravaged unit was tied for fifth in the league in sacks allowed with 52, which made upgrades a necessity this offseason.
One thing Sweezy will have to adjust to in his move to the Cardinals is Kliff Kingsbury’s Air Raid offense. Sweezy said that he has never played in that type of system before, but believes that he can pick up on it quickly.
“I’ve ran pieces of it, but I haven’t been fully in it,” Sweezy said. “I’m pretty comfortable, and I truly feel like I can adapt to anything, so I’m excited to take on the challenge.”
As for what Cardinals fans can expect from Sweezy, he gave a simple explanation as to what his playstyle is like and what they should look forward to.
“I play through the whistle every play as hard as I possibly can,” Sweezy said. “That’s just me. I don’t mean to do it, it’s just me being me.”