Cardinals LT D.J. Humphries Suffers ACL Tear

D.J. Humphries had bounced back from an injury-limited 2022 season, lining up at left tackle in 15 games this year. But his 2024 offseason will include extensive rehab after another injury.

Jonathan Gannon confirmed Wednesday (via’s Josh Weinfuss) the ninth-year blocker suffered a torn left ACL. Humphries will head to IR and need surgery. The timing of this injury, as Kyler Murray‘s 2022 ACL tear did, creates questions about Humphries’ availability to start next season.

A back injury limited Humphries to eight games last season, one that saw an aging Cardinals O-line decimated by injuries. Humphries, 30, returned to practice this summer and has protected Murray’s blind side since the Pro Bowl quarterback returned at the midseason point. Humphries is under contract for the 2024 season, but a stay on the reserve/PUP list could come to pass by September.

Drafted in the 2015 first round, Humphries is one of the longest-tenured O-linemen in Cardinals history and one of the longest-tenured players in the franchise’s Arizona years. Since debuting in 2016, Humphries has started 98 games. That puts him 12 away from moving into the top 10 among O-line starts for the 100-plus-year old organization. Before he can move past 100 career Cards starts, Humphries will be on the shelf for a while.

The Cardinals have given Humphries three contracts. The most recent, agreed to during the summer of 2022, runs through the 2025 season. Humphries’ three-year, $51MM deal checked in a bit below expectations, given where the LT market was at the time, but it provided $32MM in total guarantees. All of Humphries’ fully guaranteed money has been paid out, however. While he would be entitled to a small amount by way of injury protection, the Cardinals could consider a 2024 cut and pick up more than $15MM in cap space (via a post-June 1 designation). Though, it is too early to make assumptions there.

Humphries signed all three of his Cardinals contracts during Steve Keim‘s GM run. Monti Ossenfort‘s first draft choice as a GM went to a tackle, Paris Johnson, whom the team placed on the right side opposite Humphries. Johnson closed his college career at left tackle. The team traded Humphries’ 2022 injury fill-in, Josh Jones, to the Texans in August. The team still has Kelvin Beachum as potential insurance, having re-signed the veteran to a two-year, $5.2MM deal in March.

The Florida alum had struggled with injuries during his early years but stabilized his career in 2019, beginning a three-season stretch of 16-game seasons. The 2021 campaign, which snapped a Cardinals playoff drought, produced a Pro Bowl berth. But injuries have again stalled Humphries. With ACL recoveries generally requiring at least nine months of rehab, Humphries’ availability for the ’24 campaign will need to be monitored over the offseason.

View Comments (0)