Andre Roberts ready for breakout season

Jul 28, 2011, 4:27 PM | Updated: 5:46 pm

The Cardinals lost WR Steve Breaston to the Kansas City Chiefs, and their response to his defection may frustrate people.

The Cardinals, it would seem, are comfortable with the internal options to replace the former starter, with plans to use Early Doucet and Andre Roberts more.

While that may not sound like a good idea, Roberts, in particular, could surprise — in a good way.

According to ESPN, the second-year pro is the 13th-most likely player to have a breakout season.

The Cardinals’ coaching staff became more and more enamored with this third-round pick as the season went on; by the final two weeks, he was basically playing ahead of starter Steve Breaston. With Breaston gone, Roberts’ speed, athleticism and health should give him the No. 2 receiver job ahead of Early Doucet. His poor rookie DVOA rating of minus-39.7 percent can be blamed in large part on last year’s awful quarterback situation. Ten of the 25 incomplete passes to Roberts were marked by our game charters as “overthrown,” including a quick hitch pass behind the line of scrimmage.

Even the most ardent Roberts doubter had to see his improvement as the season progressed, as he grew from a guy who couldn’t catch anything in training camp to a player who the team relied on down the stretch.

Of Roberts’ 24 catches as a rookie, nine came in the team’s final two games, including a 110 yard effort in a win over Dallas.

With good size and speed, Roberts has potential to be a good receiver in the NFL. Getting to that point in year two would really help the Cardinals withstand the loss of Breaston.

Presented By
Western Governors University

Arizona Cardinals

Garrett Williams looks on at practice...

Tyler Drake

Cardinals’ Garrett Williams eyeing full return to action sooner than later

Garrett Williams accomplished a goal on Wednesday with his designation to return from the NFI list. Now, it's about taking that next step.

4 minutes ago

Keaontay Ingram (Jeremy Schnell/Arizona Sports)...

Arizona Sports

Cardinals-Bengals injury report: RB Keaontay Ingram out Wednesday with neck injury

The Arizona Cardinals enter an unlikely matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 5 with both teams sitting at 1-3 on the year.

2 hours ago

Arizona Cardinals HC Jonathan Gannon...

Tyler Drake

Close it out! Cards’ Jonathan Gannon predicts defensive wild card win for D-backs

Defense wins championships, or in this case, National League Wild Card Series. Just ask Arizona Cardinals head coach Jonathan Gannon.

4 hours ago

Garrett Williams introductory press conference...

Tyler Drake

Arizona Cardinals designate rookie CB Garrett Williams for return off NFI

The Cardinals designated rookie cornerback Garrett Williams for return from the non-football injury list on Wednesday.

7 hours ago

Nolan Cooney...

Tyler Drake

Cardinals release P Nolan Cooney, sign 2 to active roster

The Arizona Cardinals released punter Nolan Cooney and added Blake Gillikin on Tuesday afternoon, the team announced.

1 day ago

Dante Stills...

Tyler Drake

New era notes: Cardinals’ Dante Stills impressing as snaps pile up

Rookie Dante Stills is flying under the radar as he slowly but surely gets the chance to prove himself along the defensive line.

2 days ago

Andre Roberts ready for breakout season