ARIZONA CARDINALS

Cardinals activate J.J. Watt and Dennis Gardeck from PUP, among other moves

Aug 23, 2021, 12:04 PM

Most significantly among a series of roster moves Monday, the Arizona Cardinals announced that they activated defensive end J.J. Watt and outside linebacker Dennis Gardeck from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list.

Arizona also pulled receiver Andy Isabella off of the COVID-19 reserve list, released tight end Ian Bunting and wideout Rico Gafford, then waived cornerback Luq Barcoo with a failed physical designation.

Watt, who signed with the Cardinals after being released by the Houston Texans before the end of the 2020 league year, went through Arizona’s conditioning test on July 29 and felt “a little soreness” in his hamstring. That put him on the PUP list.

Gardeck is back after he injured his ACL in Week 15 of last season. He did not undergo surgery on his knee until mid-January.

The special teams captain made his defensive debut in Week 5 of last season and thrived as a situational pass-rusher — he finished the year second on the team with 7.0 sacks on just 94 defensive snaps. Though he ended 2020 with a serious knee injury, Gardeck was retained as a restricted free agent by inking a tender at a second-round value.

Isabella was placed on the COVID-19 reserve list a week ago this Monday. It was the third-year pro’s second time being put under protocols for either testing positive for the virus or being a close contact.

Bunting and Gafford likely found themselves on the outside looking in at their respective position groups as a roster cut deadline looms Tuesday.

Barcoo was acquired via waiver claim on Friday before his release.

Teams must be at or below 80 players by 1 p.m. MST Tuesday.

Arizona Cardinals

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 26: Jessie Lemonier #52 of the Detroit Lions celebrates a fumble recovery ag...
Wills Rice

Cardinals claim LB Jesse Lemonier off waivers, release DL LaRon Stokes

The Cardinals announced that the team has claimed LB Jesse Lemonier off waivers from the Lions and released DL LaRon Stokes.
16 hours ago
(Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)...
Arizona Sports

Arizona Cardinals donating 200,000 meals to United Food Bank

The Arizona Cardinals and Albertsons/Safeway are partnering to donate 200,000 meals to the United Food Bank.
16 hours ago
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury of the Arizona Cardinals calls a play during the first half against the ...
Arizona Sports

Cardinals Corner podcast: Is Kliff Kingsbury ready for a gauntlet schedule?

Following last season's epic collapse to end the season, a lot of the focus and criticism shifted toward head coach Kliff Kingsbury.
16 hours ago
An Arizona Cardinals helmet on the grass during Arizona Cardinals training camp on July 30, 2021 at...
Arizona Sports

Cardinals sign 6 players to roster following tryouts at rookie minicamp

The Arizona Cardinals signed and released six players following tryouts at rookie minicamp, the team announced Monday.
2 days ago
Arizona Cardinals' Keaontay Ingram (30) runs drills at the NFL football team's rookie minicamp, Fri...
Wills Rice

Cardinals RB Keaontay Ingram excited to prove himself on the field

Cardinals RB Keaontay Ingram said he is ready to prove that the running back position is still the engine of the team.
3 days ago
Running back James Conner #6 of the Arizona Cardinals rushes the football against the Houston Texan...
Wills Rice

PFF’s Cole: Cardinals’ James Conner is a fantasy football post-draft winner

The Cardinals added to their offensive arsenal in the 2022 NFL Draft, but PFF thinks RB James Conner came out as the fantasy football winner.
3 days ago
Cardinals activate J.J. Watt and Dennis Gardeck from PUP, among other moves