Arizona Cardinals GM Steve Keim addresses team’s struggling running game

Nov 24, 2014, 4:03 PM | Updated: 6:21 pm
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The Arizona Cardinals saw their six-game winning streak come to an end with a resounding thud in a 19-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field.

In the loss, the Cardinals once again struggled to run the football, gaining only 64 yards on 20 attempts. If you take away scrambles from quarterback Drew Stanton, Arizona had only 41 yards on 16 carries from running backs Andre Ellington, Stepfan Taylor and Robert Hughes.

There are many issues with the running game, according to general manager Steve Keim, starting with the health of Ellington.

“I think he’s played the entire season a little knicked up,” Keim told Doug and Wolf Monday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “But we need to get more out of Andre, as we need to get more out of all of our backs.”

Ellington, the second-year back out of Clemson, has played in every game this season despite being bothered with a foot injury. But he has lacked the same explosion he showed as a rookie. In 196 carries, Ellington’s longest run has been 22 yards and he has only three carries of 20 or more yards. Last season, he had eight such gains in only 118 carries.

But the problem is not solely Ellington, according to Keim.

“We need to get more production out of our offensive line,” he said. “We need to get more physical up front. We have to get our guys playing in better unison. You see in the run game, it could be one guy coming off a combination block too early or a back making a wrong read.

“Those are the little things that make the run game.”

Sunday’s output again opens the door for questions about personnel changes — questions that have persisted for most of the season. Do the continued struggles in the running game mean changes are coming on the offensive line?

“I think you’d have to ask Bruce that,” Keim said. “He and I talked after the game, and we’re on the same page. (Tackle) Bobby (Massie) played poorly, I thought. I thought the other guys were up and down. It certainly wasn’t our best game across the board on the offensive line.”

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