ESPN is currently running a series on 2016 projections. Already we have seen rookie guard Jonathan Cooper listed as a projected top 10 lineman and Patrick Peterson as the projected top cornerback.
Two other players in Arizona also get the top 10 treatment.
The first is linebacker Daryl Washington, who already has a Pro Bowl under his belt. In three seasons, he is projected to be the sixth best linebacker in the game, according to Field Yate's Insider post.
Washington did it all for the Cardinals in 2012, leading them in both tackles and sacks. He's a formidable athlete with a solid build at 6-foot-2 and 230 pounds, and he has excellent movement skills to play coverage as well. The concerns for the 26-year old rest in an unkind offseason in which he has been arrested and suspended four games to start the 2013 season. Washington has to clean things up off the field in order to ensure that he can stay on it. He means too much to Arizona (who handed him a loaded extension at the start of the 2012 season) to miss extended time.
Also projected to be very good is tight end Rob Housler, as Gary Horton projects in his Insider post. He is eighth and callled the "sleeper" of the players at his position.
He is the "sleeper" of this list. While he really seems ready to break out and become an elite player, the production isn't there yet. He has excellent size and good receiving skills, but his consistency is up and down with too many dropped passes. The good news for Housler is that he has a new coaching staff that loves to incorporate the TE into the offense. He will be given every chance to succeed, but who will be his QB in 2016?
In 2016, that makes two offensive players and two defensive players projected to be in the top 10 at their position. Who else could there be? Michael Floyd? Calais Campbell? One of this year's rookies?
And what does this say about the team in three seasons?
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