CARDINALS CORNER

Tough 53-man roster decisions loom for Arizona Cardinals’ Kliff Kingsbury

Aug 27, 2022, 9:37 PM
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury of the Arizona Cardinals calls a play during the first half against the ...
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury of the Arizona Cardinals calls a play during the first half against the Green Bay Packers at State Farm Stadium on October 28, 2021 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

The Arizona Cardinals wrapped up their preseason slate with a 26-23 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Saturday night.

Next stop, the regular season.

But before Arizona can start playing games that count in the win-loss column, there’s a 53-man roster that needs constructing.

For the most part, head coach Kliff Kingsbury has a good feel on the team’s starters. On the backend, however, there are spots to be had ahead of Tuesday’s final cutdown day.

“Over the next 24-48 hours, we’ll have a bunch of discussions,” Kingsbury told reporters postgame. “There’s some deep rooms. We’re going to have to make some tough decisions and we’ll see how it all plays out.”

Among the loaded positions groups is running back. Arizona will likely keep four running backs with five legitimate candidates to consider.

James Conner is locked in as the team’s starter. Eno Benjamin has taken a step forward. Jonathan Ward brings strong special teams play. Darrel Williams has proven he can be a factor in a high-powered offense. And Keaontay Ingram is a rookie with a lot of potential.

Another room where decisions could be difficult is at wide receiver.

Victor Bolden Jr. flashed at times but it was Greg Dortch and Andy Isabella who really cemented their spots at the back of the depth chart thanks to their consistent play throughout training camp and the preseason.

“I’ve always had a tremendous amount of respect for both those guys and how they play the game, how they work,” Kingsbury said. “I thought they attacked this camp. They didn’t take a day off, they didn’t take a rep off.

“Both of them, every day, full speed. You see the results. They’re going against other competition and can’t say enough good things about how they played this camp.”

Those aren’t the only positions that need a closer look, either, with outside linebacker and offensive line being no cake walk at the end of the depth chart.

Life Changer Loans
Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis (7) is stopped by Arizona Cardinals linebacker Zaven Collins (25) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Trace McSorley (19) passes against the Tennessee Titans in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis (7) passes against the Arizona Cardinals in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Arizona Cardinals running back Eno Benjamin (26) catches a pass against the Tennessee Titans in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Arizona Cardinals running back Eno Benjamin catches a pass in the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Arizona Cardinals running back Darrel Williams (24) is congratulated after scoring a touchdown against the Tennessee Titans in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Greg Dortch (83) catches a pass as he is defended by Tennessee Titans safety Theo Jackson (29) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel watches from the sideline in the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Tennessee Titans cheerleaders perform in the first half of a preseason NFL football game between the Titans and the Arizona Cardinals Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans running back Julius Chestnut (36) is congratulated by Racey McMath (13) after Chestnut scored a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans running back Julius Chestnut (36) scores a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Tennessee Titans wide receiver Treylon Burks (16) leaps into the end zone past Arizona Cardinals cornerback Josh Jackson (36) as Burks scores a touchdown on a 14-yard pass completion in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans wide receiver Treylon Burks (16) celebrates with Cody Hollister, left, and Hassan Haskins (25) after Burks scored a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans kicker Randy Bullock (14) kicks a 51-yard field goal against the Arizona Cardinals in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Greg Dortch (83) catches a touchdown pass as he is hit by Tennessee Titans safety Theo Jackson (29) in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Greg Dortch (83) runs to the bench after catching a touchdown pass against the Tennessee Titans in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Arizona Cardinals safety James Wiggins (38) intercepts a pass intended for Tennessee Titans wide receiver Mason Kinsey (12) in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Arizona Cardinals safety James Wiggins (38) celebrates with Jace Whittaker (39) after Wiggins intercepted a pass against the Tennessee Titans in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Arizona Cardinals running back Keaontay Ingram (30) tries to get past Tennessee Titans safety Theo Jackson (29) in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans wide receiver Cody Hollister (8) makes a catch over Arizona Cardinals cornerback Jace Whittaker (39) in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Tennessee Titans quarterback Logan Woodside (5) spikes the ball after scoring a touchdown on a 9-yard run against the Arizona Cardinals in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Tennessee Titans quarterback Logan Woodside (5) dives into the end zone to score a touchdown on a 9-yard run against the Arizona Cardinals in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis) Tennessee Titans quarterback Logan Woodside (5) dives past Arizona Cardinals safety Tae Daley (48) to score a touchdown in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans quarterback Logan Woodside (5) celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) 
              Tennessee Titans running back Trenton Cannon (23) is stopped by Arizona Cardinals linebacker Ben Niemann (56) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis)
            
              Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Andy Isabella (17) does out of bounds a he is chased by Tennessee Titans safety Theo Jackson (29) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)
            
              Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis (7) scrambles past Arizona Cardinals linebacker Ben Niemann (56) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)
            Tennessee Titans quarterback Logan Woodside (5) celebrates with Xavier Newman (67) after Woodside scored a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Jarrett Guarantano, right, is sacked by Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Sam Okuayinonu (68) on the final play of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. The Cardinals recovered the ball on the play. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans quarterback Logan Woodside celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in the second half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski) Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis (7) is stopped by Arizona Cardinals linebacker Zaven Collins (25) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/John Amis)

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