Nate Burleson tabs Cardinals’ A.J. Green as his Comeback Player of the Year
After missing the 2019 season and battling a hamstring injury throughout 2020, new Arizona Cardinals wide receiver A.J. Green was picked by the NFL Network’s Nate Burleson as his Comeback Player of the Year for 2021.
Spending the first 10 years of his career with the Cincinnati Bengals, Green signed a one-year deal with the Cardinals back in March.
Green joined a wide receiver room highlighted by DeAndre Hopkins, but Burleson thinks he can benefit the Cardinals offense in a particular field position.
“I feel like A.J. Green-zone will ball out,” Burleson said. “What’s the green zone? Forty-and-in. When they start sniffing that red zone, they’re going to be able to look at A.J.”
Burleson thinks once the Cardinals reach opposing defense’s 40-yard line, they will turn their attention to Hopkins, Christian Kirk in the slot or focus on slowing down Kyler Murray’s legs, giving Green the chance to make some plays.
There’s been buzz from Cardinals training camp that Green appears to be in the best shape of his career, something Burleson mentioned.
“If you’ve been paying attention to the headlines, what he’s been doing at practice … he is in the best shape of his life,” he said. “I’m saying that A.J. Green puts up 1,000 yards this season.”
If Green were to surpass 1,000 yards this season, it would be the first time he’s done so since 2017.
In his career, Green has reached the 1,000 receiving yards mark six times and did so in each of his first five seasons in the league.
Since 2018, Green has only started in 23 games. In that time he had 93 receptions for 1,217 yards and eight touchdowns.