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Competition for offensive line is 'wide open' for 2 starting spots, bench

Harold Goodwin thinks he knows who the starting five will be. 

NFL: Washington Redskins at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Arizona Cardinals offensive line is mostly set. However, two starting spots are in "open competition," according to offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin. The team is happy with three spots where they have highly paid, established veterans.

Jared Veldheer will man left tackle for the third season in a row. Mike Iupati enters his second year with the team as the starting left guard. Free agent addition Evan Mathis takes over at right guard, where Jonathan Cooper and Ted Larsen played last season.

The two other positions -- center and right tackle -- are "wide open."

"D.J. (Humphries) is in open competition. A.Q. (Shipley) is in open competition," Good win said. "I think the other three spots are set unless something happens."

Goodwin mentioned some other young players who are doing well so far in spring work -- Taylor Boggs, who plays center, Antoine McClain, a guard, and rookie Evan Boehm, a center.

How open is the competition? That remains to be seen. The team is counting on Humphries to start. Surely Earl Watford, who started two games last season at right tackle, and Rob Crisp are in the mix. Perhaps even undrafted rookie Clay DeBord will get some looks. At center, it is Shipley, who starts with the first team now, battling Boggs and Boehm.

Goodwin said they will need seven guys on the roster. In years past, that has been more like eight or nine.

"Right now I think I have a clue who five are, but I don't know who six or seven are going to be," he said.

If we have to pick seven guys right now, it is likely Veldheer, Iupati, Shipley, Mathis, Humphries, Watford and Boehm. Adding an eighth player would probably be a tackle -- maybe Crisp, but McClain might fit in if he can do more than play guard.