Former Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt liked the idea of breaking up duties for the backs – adding in LaRod Stephens-Howling as well – new coach Bruce Arians has a different philosophy.
“Backs by committee, one of them gets hurt you’ve lost half your committee or a third of your committee,” Arians said. “I like guys who can play every down.”
Arians doesn’t see his running backs as primary receivers. They will get some receptions, yes, but they are there as an extra line of protection so the quarterback has time to look down the field and complete passes for the “big chunks” the new coach loves so much.
“Can they run the football, do they have vision, patience,” Arians asks of his backs. “Second, can they pass protect on second down? Can they pass protect on third down when it really gets complicated?
“Will we throw to the backs? Yeah. But the receivers are the ones paid to catch it.”
Arians is familiar with Ryan Williams, who figures to get first crack at the starting job in Arizona.