Cardinals claim 6 players off waivers, focusing on center depth

Aug 30, 2023, 10:07 AM | Updated: 2:07 pm

Monti Ossenfort at training camp...

Arizona Cardinals general manager Monti Ossenfort participates in a team practice ahead of the NFL season at State Farm Stadium on July 31, 2023 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Arizona Cardinals claimed an NFL-high six players off waivers Wednesday following the league’s 53-man roster cut deadline a day prior, the team announced.

ESPN’s Field Yates was the first to report the claims.

Arizona claimed centers Trystan Colon-Castillo and Keith Ismael, safety K’Von Wallace, cornerback Starling Thomas offensive tackle Ilm Manning and tight end Elijah Higgins.

To make room for the new additions, wide receiver Daniel Arias, offensive lineman Marquis Hayes, safety Jovante Moffatt, defensive lineman Ben Stille and tight end Blake Whiteheart were released.

The center position was a focus with Hjalte Froholdt the starter and no depth thereafter. Rookie Jon Gaines II appeared to be in line to play backup but begins the year on the injured reserve with his season lost due to a knee injury.

Hayden Howerton and Lecitus Smith, two other center options, were released Tuesday, while veteran Pat Elflein was placed on the injured reserve on Monday.

Colon-Castillo has 20 games of experience with the Baltimore Ravens and four starts under his belt, while Ismael has 18 games of NFL experience and five starts, all with the Washington Commanders.

Wallace is the most experienced player of the waiver claims with 45 games played and seven starts for the Philadelphia Eagles in the past three years under then-defensive coordinator and first-year Cardinals coach Jonathan Gannon.

He adds depth behind Budda Baker and Jalen Thompson and could be utilized right away with three-safety looks.

Manning (undrafted out of Hawaii) and Higgins (Miami Dolphins sixth-round pick out of Stanford) are the rookies reportedly picked up by the Cardinals.

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