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Arizona Cardinals 53-man roster projection before final preseason game

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Cuts are coming Saturday

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I did this not too long ago, but with the final preseason game Thursday night and final cuts coming Saturday, it is time to get one more projection out there for how the roster will look for the Arizona Cardinals.

Offense:

Quarterback (3): Carson Palmer, Drew Stanton, Logan Thomas

No questions here

Running back (4): Andre Ellington, Jonathan Dwyer, Stepfan Taylor, Robert Hughes

There really isn't any question here. Bruce Arians has said maybe five backs, which could add Jalen Parmele for special teams reasons, but I don't think the numbers will allow it.

Wide receiver (6): Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, John Brown, Jaron Brown, Ted Ginn, Walt Powell

I have been firm about keeping six receivers. Powell sticks because he has a higher upside at receiver  than Brittan Golden and he is a plus special teams player, while Golden has actually been not so good.

Tight end (4): John Carlson, Rob Housler, Troy Niklas, Darren Fells

Again, no question here.

Offensive line (8): Jared Veldheer, Ted Larsen, Lyle Sendlein, Paul Fanaika, Bobby Massie, Earl Watford, Nate Potter, Jonathan Cooper

Last season they kept nine linemen. The sixth receiver will keep that from happening this year. I don't know if Cooper or Larsen will be the starter, but Larsen ends up being also the backup to Sendlein. With max Starks cut, it becomes a battle for Bradley Sowell and Nate Potter. I think Potter has been better in camp and the offseason. That gives him the edge, but I think that Sowell will be on the practice squad with the new rules.

Defense:

Defensive line (7): Frostee Rucker, Dan Williams, Calais Campbell, Tommy Kelly, Alameda Ta'amu, Kareem Martin, Ed Stinson

The signing of Kelly locked up this group. That means no Bruce Gaston or Isaac Sopoaga. It will be interesting to see game days. They only played five linemen last season. All seven won't be active, I can't imagine.

Outside linebacker (5): John Abraham, Sam Acho, Alex Okafor, Matt Shaughnessy, Lorenzo Alexnder

Alexander has been playing more outside linebacker, so that pushes Marcus Benard off the roster. If Lorenzo were to play inside, I would have Benard here.

Inside linebacker (4): Kevin Minter, Larry Foote, Kenny Demens, Desmond Bishop

Between Steve Keim and Bruce Arians, I heard enough positive talking about Bishop  that makes me think he will get the final spot. Glenn Carson is a possibility as well. The fact that Demens was starting in place of Minter tells me he is a lock.

Cornerback (5): Patrick Peterson, Antonio Cromartie, Jerraud Powers, Justin Bethel, Bryan McCann

Only five here because Tyrann Mathieu looks ready to play. Teddy Williams is out. His special teams play has been shaky, as he has been flagged three times on "teams". McCann is solid there and is a much better option on defense. Williams was not good in coverage against the Bengals.

Safety (4): Rashad Johnson, Tyrann Mathieu, Tony Jefferson, Deone Bucannon

This was easy, too.

Specialists:

Punter: Dave Zastudil

Kicker: Chandler Catanzaro

Long snapper: Mike Leach

These guys are set. The team released Jay Feely, so that decided it.