Cardinals’ running back group ranked top 10 heading into 2016

May 23, 2016, 11:00 AM | Updated: 11:04 am
Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson during OTAs. (Photo by Adam Green)...
Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson during OTAs. (Photo by Adam Green)
(Photo by Adam Green)

The emergence of David Johnson revolutionized the Arizona Cardinals’ offense last season.

Johnson stepped up big after Chris Johnson went down in Week 12 with a broken tibia, as the rookie rushed for 99 yards and caught a touchdown pass against the then-St. Louis Rams in his first start the following week.

Johnson exploded onto the scene two weeks later in Philadelphia, amassing 187 yards and three touchdowns on the ground while catching four passes for 42 yards.

His performance at the end of last season, coupled with Chris Johnson returning and Andre Ellington, Stepfan Taylor and Kerwynn Williams being key reserves, has the Cardinals’ running back group ranked No. 10 in the NFL according to Bleacher Report’s Russell S. Baxter.

In 2015, the Arizona Cardinals ground attack was brought to you by Johnson and Johnson.

Thanks primarily to this duo, the Cardinals finished eighth in the NFL in rushing, one year after ranking next-to-last in the league in the same category. Reserves Andre Ellington and Stepfan Taylor have starting experience, and Kerwynn Williams has shown his ability when called upon. This group gives head coach Bruce Arians numerous options.

Being able to effectively run the ball in the playoffs and have a multi-dimensional offense will play a large factor in the team’s Super Bowl aspirations. Taking pressure off quarterback Carson Palmer will be huge next season.

The teams whose running back groups are ranked ahead of the Cardinals are the Green Bay Packers, Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings, Pittsburgh Steelers, Kansas City Chiefs, Carolina Panthers, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys and New York Jets.

Life Changer Loans

Comments

Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Arizona Cardinals

Budda Baker #3 and Kyler Murray #1 of the Arizona Cardinals walk off the field following the NFL ga...
Arizona Sports

NFL Top 100: Kyler Murray gets comped, Rams have Budda Baker rule

Cardinals Kyler Murray and Budda Baker joined teammate James Conner in the NFL Network's Top 100 list of players, as ranked by their peers.
10 hours ago
Running back James Conner #6 of the Arizona Cardinals rushes the football against Leonard Floyd #54...
Sam Graveline

Cardinals RB James Conner comes in at No. 80 in NFL Top 100

After scoring 18 touchdowns in his first season with the Cardinals, running back James Conner got some recognition from his peers in the NFL.
1 day ago
Kendric Pryor #19 of the Cincinnati Bengals makes a catch past Breon Borders #21 of the Arizona Car...
Arizona Sports

Arizona Cardinals release DL Kingsley Keke, CB Breon Borders among 5 cuts

The Cardinals cut DL Kingsley Keke, OL Haggai Ndubuisi, OL Greg Long, RB Ronnie Rivers and CB Breon Borders, the team announced. 
1 day ago
Arizona Cardinals defensive end J.J. Watt walks the sideline during the team's NFL football preseas...
Haboob Blog

Cardinals’ J.J. Watt encounters ‘baby rattlesnake’ in bathroom

Cardinals defensive lineman J.J. Watt found himself in a situation many who call Arizona home never wish to be in. Or at least he thought so.
2 days ago
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) greets San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Sha...
Tom Kuebel

Kliff Kingsbury lends support for 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan in hat ‘beef’

Kliff Kingsbury tendered support for San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan in his ongoing hat drama with the NFL.
2 days ago
Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Ward (29) celebrates his touchdown against the Cincinnati B...
Arizona Sports

Cardinals Corner: Arizona standouts aplenty in win over Bengals

Arizona Sports' Cardinals reporter Tyler Drake and 98.7 FM's Erik Ruby give their top standouts in the team's 36-23 win over the Bengals.
2 days ago
Cardinals’ running back group ranked top 10 heading into 2016