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Cardinals’ Justin Pugh Talks About Humbling Free Agency Process

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Arizona Cardinals new offensive lineman Justin Pugh was brought in to help bolster the Cardinals offensive line, but Pugh experience quite the free agency process that he says “humbled” him.

“It was a crazy process,” Pugh said this past weekend, according to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan. “I thought I would get all these calls. Saw [Andrew] Norwell get signed [to a 5-year, $66.5 million deal with Jacksonville] and thinking I’m breaking the bank. And, you know, coming off an injury, coming off the season that we had, you get humbled a little bit. That is kind of what happened. You win three games in a season, not many things are going to go well for you.”

Pugh was with the New York Giants since they drafted him, but as new general manager Dave Gettleman and coach Pat Shurmur started rolling out their plans for a bigger, more physical offensive line, Pugh found himself on the outside, not a part of the Giants’ plans moving forward.

Pugh, 27, also missed eight games last season with a back injury, and had to be looked over by the Cardinals before they officially signed him to a deal. His back was a complicated part of his free agency process, as teams were hesitant to bring him in.

“It started to worry me when it was going on because I was like, ‘Norwell signed. I think I’m as good if not better than him. He’s a run blocker.’ So once I knew New York was out of the question — I didn’t even talk to New York — once I knew it wasn’t going to happen I was like, ‘Norwell, go to New York so every other guard team is out there.'”

Pugh was also disappointed that the Giants didn’t show any interest in bringing him back.

“Of course. It was the team I started with,” Pugh said. “I always use the analogy it’s like your high school girlfriend. You think it’s going to last forever and then reality kicks in and it’s a business.

“I don’t blame the Giants at all. Everyone got fired. There was nobody there who had any allegiance to me whatsoever. I don’t even know those guys. If I was in New York it would be a new team anyways. Then I got to Arizona and it felt like the right place.”

Arizona Cardinals

Three Takeaways from the Detroit Lions road victory against the Arizona Cardinals 17-3, somehow keeping their playoff hopes alive

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1. Zach Zenner showed up to play this week

Late in the game, Zach Zenner got a few series at running back and he made an immediate impact. He helped the Lions drive down the field and score their only offensive touchdown of the game. Not only did he do that, but he helped ice the game by getting first downs late in the 4th quarter. Zenner finished with 54 rushing yards on 12 carries and a touchdown. 

2. Jarrad Davis was all over the place on defense

Davis is really starting to get in his zone on defense. He was breaking up pass plays, stuffing the run, and even got himself a sack in this game. Davis finished with eight tackles, one sack, and pass deflection. Throughout his first two years in the league, Davis is improving week by week and it is a great sign of things to come at linebacker for the Lions.

3. The offense continues to struggle each week while the defense has improved each week

If it wasn’t for Zenner’s spark and Darius Slay’s interception for a touchdown, the rest of the Lions offense was only able to manage three points. While fans should understand that the offense will struggle due to injuries, etc. it shouldn’t be as bad as it is. Stafford only threw for 101 yards because every pass was short and everybody struggled to get open. As long as Marvin Jones and Kerryon Johnson are still on the sidelines, there is nothing really positive going for the Lions offense.

With this victory, the Lions still somehow have a chance to make the playoffs. While they will need lots of help from other teams, the possibility is still there. Now, this victory wasn’t against a very good Cardinals team, but the defense still looked really good and was a major factor in the Lions winning. With three games left in the season and two of those being divisional games, it will be very interesting to see where the 2018 season pans out for the Lions.

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Cardinals Place D.J. Humphries On IR

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The Arizona Cardinals have placed left tackle D.J. Humphries, who has been out of action since Week 10’s loss to the Kansas City Chiefs due to a knee injury, on injured reserve, according to an official team announcement.

In corresponding moves, the Cards have signed offensive lineman Joe Barksdale and Rees Odhiambo from the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad.

Arizona now has to decide if they will keep Humphries beyond this season, as they have a $9.625 fifth-year option they can opt to pick up on his contract.

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Cardinals Release Jamar Taylor

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The Arizona Cardinals have released veteran cornerback Jamar Taylor who will be subject to the waiver process, according to NFL Network insider Mike Garafolo.

Taylor rebuild his career in 2 strong seasons with the Cleveland Browns, including setting career highs in 2017, but was lost in the shuffle in Arizona where he collected only 17 tackles and one pass defended in 10 games this season, including 3 starts.

Taylor will now look to latch on to a team for the stretch run of the season. Perhaps a return to Miami could be in the cards?

 

 

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