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Arizona Cardinals position battles: Drew Butler pushing Dave Zastudil for punting job

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This is a surprise.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

There have been a number of fans who have asked why in the world punter Drew Butler is still on the Arizona Cardinals roster. On Thursday, head coach Bruce Arians expained, and it will surprise you.

While many believed Butler was simply insurance in case Zastudil gets hurt again, Arians revealed that Butler is actually pushing Zasty for the punting job. Arians even said the two were "pretty even" in the competition, according to ESPN's Josh Weinfuss.

"Having seen them both for a season, it's just who kicks it the best and (is) the most consistent," Arians said.

Zastudil missed almost the entire 2014 season with a groin injury that landed him on injured reserve.

Butler handled punting duties last season, but there are some bad memories for Cardinals fans. He had two punts blocked. He had a horrific game in the playoffs. He had a few really bad punts during the season.

In the end, though, he was among the league leaders in punts inside the 20 with 36. He averaged 42.1 yards per punt and had a net of 38.6. The numbers were overall pretty average.

Zastudil is 36, but he is a very accomplished punter. He is also coming off a leg injury. Combine that with age and productivity and effectiveness can drop off in a hurry.

Plus, Butler is still young. He had room to improve. Maybe he is finally coming into his own.

Are you pleased or are you worried? What if Butler wins the job? How confident will you be in him during the season?