When the Arizona Cardinals selected Isaiah Simmons in the top ten in the 2020 NFL Draft, it came with an idea that he was more than just an off ball linebacker.
In year one Simmons was just not ready, playing only 34% of the snaps for the Cardinals.
However, in 2021 he was moved up to 92% of the snaps and played over 1000 snaps on the season.
In 2022 he is expected to make the leap to become one of the better defensive players in the league.
Vance Joseph discussed that on Saturday:
“He is our star backer,” he told reporters Saturday.
“Star backer is a guy that plays linebacker, safety and a little bit of dime,” he explained. “He’s a star position and in this scheme, he can be a lot of places.”
One of the things that I talked about when the Cardinals drafted Simmons was patience.
Simmons was lightly used as a freshman at Clemson, was used more as a sophomore and became an All American his junior year before the Cardinals took him in the top ten in the NFL Draft.
The trajectory will hopefully be the same in the NFL and allow the Cardinals to become one of the better and more versatile defenses in the NFL.
It is now on Simmons to make that leap.