Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim and head coach Bruce Arians both took questions from the media after the team announced it had traded tackle Levi Brown.
Arians had previously called Brown "elite". Apparently, he was looking back at the last half of 2011. "The tackle we evaluated (from) 2011 was a heck of a left tackle," Arians said. "The tackle that got back isn't the same guy."
That Brown was the one that, after being released, was re-signed to a five-year contract.
Unfortunately, Brown just wasn't playing well enough and was paid too much money. He was traded because he "was not living up to our expectations on the field," Keim said. That would explain why the Cards also had to pay almost all of his salary.
The next question is now what Bradley Sowell can do in his place. After all, as frustrating as Levi Brown could be, we all saw how life could be without him in 2012, and it was ugly.
Arians was quite blunt about the change. "I don't think there's any risk (in the move) because of the problems that have occurred," Arians said. "I don't think it can get any worse and hopefully it can get better. Not just in pass protection but in the run game as well."
I guess Arians may be wishing he never called Brown "elite."
Hopefully it can get better. Unfortunately, you get the feeling that they are okay with Sowell doing a poor job because he makes less and perhaps has more upside.
"All young players are going to take their lumps," Keim said of Sowell. "I don't think it'll be any different for Bradley. We don't expect him to jump in and look like Joe Thomas from Day One. He's going to have his issues from time to time. But what we are banking on is a guy who will grow."
Cardinals fans...the line play isn't going to be better, you only no longer have Levi Brown to be the whipping boy.
Carson Palmer will still get hit by the rusher over left tackle. At least he will feel more comfortable because Sowell was hand-picked by Harold Goodwin.
How confident are you in the move to Sowell?