Evan Mathis signing in Arizona has far-reaching fantasy/postseason implications

Posted: May 12, 2016 in Football, New entries, NFL

The Cardinals have an explosive offense mostly known for their passing offense: QB Carson Palmer, WR’s Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, and small-school burner John Brown.  What football fans outside of Arizona are beginning to see is their rushing attack come to life. The Cardinals were the 8th-ranked running attack in 2015 with new free agent hires OG Mike Iupati, LT Jared Veldheer, and RB Chris Johnson chipping in. All those guys are still there, and so is OG Evan Mathis, the former Bronco and Eagle who ranked as the third ranked guard in football last year, as well as the number one run-blocking guard (according to profootballfocus.com.)

The Cardinals bevy of running backs (David Johnson, Andre Ellington, Chris Johnson) will give Arizona plenty of opportunity to run all over defenses. January’s contests between Arizona and Seattle and Arizona and Carolina might look very different had Arians’ offense been able to get more of a push at the line of scrimmage. The addition of the best run-blocking guard in football should change that. In their playoff game against eventual NFC champs Carolina, the Cardinals top-10 rushing attack was limited to 60 yards rushing, forcing Carson Palmer to turn to the passing game and eventually throw four interceptions.

Arizona faces Carolina again this coming October 30th, where the Panthers will no longer have literally the easiest schedule in football and l̶o̶u̶d̶m̶o̶u̶t̶h̶ talented cornerback Josh Norman to help them build momentum.

The Cardinals were a very strong roster before this offseason. They should compete again among the NFC heavyweights, among which I expect Green Bay and New York will resurface.

The addition of Mathis also means drafting David Johnson in fantasy is now a viable option. He was a viable option in fantasy last year as well, when he collected over 1,000 yards from scrimmage and 12 total touchdowns (8 rushing, 4 receiving).

The music video for the day is Andra Day’s Rise Up. It may not make you feel manly, but the video was directed by M. Night Shyamalan, the man behind Sixth Sense and the confusing but hilarious(ly bad) The Happening.

 

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