D.J. Humphries

Cardinals To Extend D.J. Humphries

Shortly after Steve Keim indicated the Cardinals were confident they’d retain D.J. Humphries in free agency, Arizona’s left tackle has agreed to terms to stay with the franchise that drafted him.

Humphries agreed to a three-year, $45MM extension on Monday, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets. The former first-round pick will receive $30MM over the first two years of that deal, and the pact contains $29MM guaranteed. This takes one of the top offensive linemen off the free agent market.

The second year of Humphries’ deal – worth $15MM – will become guaranteed on March 21 of this year, Kent Somers of The Arizona Republic tweets. That means the first two years are effectively guaranteed; a big win for the lineman and his camp.

Humphries, 26, now becomes the NFL’s fifth-highest-paid tackle, in terms of per-year salary. He’s also one of five $15MM-AAV offensive linemen. A Humphries franchise tag would have cost Arizona nearly $15MM; that certainly played a role in these extension talks.

While Humphries has battled injuries and inconsistency, the Cardinals are sold he can be Kyler Murray‘s blind-side protector for years to come. The Cardinals had not seen Humphries play 16 games until this past season. From 2017-18, he played five and nine, respectively. Knee issues sidelined Humphries during those slates, which came after a 2015 rookie season in which he was inactive throughout. This is a big bet from Keim, whose record on first-round picks between Humphries and Murray has not been great.

From 2016-18, the Cardinals used first-round picks on Robert Nkemdiche, Haason Reddick and Josh Rosen. None were starters by season’s end; Reddick is the only member of this trio who remains with the Cards. He will almost certainly see his fifth-year option declined come May. Humphries has outperformed this trio, but other than a brief 2017 work sample, Pro Football Focus has not raved about the ex-Florida blocker’s work. That has not stopped teams from big tackle investments, however. The Buccaneers gave Donovan Smith a major extension last year, despite frequent down reviews from PFF.

Humphries began his career as Arizona’s right tackle in 2016 but switched to the left side a year later, moving Jared Veldheer from his long-held left tackle post. Humphries has played for three head coaches, but despite Kliff Kingsbury being early in his Texas Tech tenure when the Cards drafted the 6-foot-5 tackle, the second-year Arizona coach has entrusted him to protect the franchise’s top investment for a while.

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Cardinals ‘Very Optimistic’ About Re-Signing LT D.J. Humphries

The Cardinals weren’t very good this past year, but the first season of the Kliff Kingsbury/Kyler Murray partnership was by all accounts a modest success relative to expectations. They now have a pivotal offseason ahead of them, and it sounds like locking up Murray’s blindside protector is a priority. 

Arizona GM Steve Keim said during a recent radio interview with 98.7 FM that he’s “very optimistic” about the team’s chances of bringing back left tackle D.J. Humphries, via Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic. Keim added that the entire organization is “very confident” that Humphries is “one of the better tackles” in the league. The Cardinals drafted Humphries in the first round back in 2015, and his career got off to a very shaky start.

His rookie season was a disaster, as he couldn’t move past third-string on the depth chart and was inactive for all 16 games. He started his second season at right tackle, starting 13 games. He was the left tackle the following year, but knee issues limited him to only five appearances. In 2018 he started nine games at left tackle before another knee injury ended his season. This past year he finally stayed healthy, starting all 16 contests.

Humphries received solid grades from Pro Football Focus, and the Cards clearly don’t plan on letting him walk. When asked about using the franchise tag on him, Keim indicated he would rather work out an extension. “You always want to tie up your players that you feel good about and you want to come to an agreement moving forward to a longer-term deal than having to use those things,” he said. McManaman thinks that Arizona will have to pay the 26-year-old around $14MM annually.

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Cardinals Undecided On D.J. Humphries Extension

Cardinals left tackle D.J. Humphries is playing out the fifth-year option of his rookie contract and will be eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2020. But even though Humphries has opened each of the past three seasons as Arizona’s starting LT, Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic writes that the Cards are undecided as to whether they will attempt to retain the Florida product long-term.

Humphries did not play a single snap in 2015, his rookie season, and then-head coach Bruce Arians criticized Humphries for his work ethic and commitment. Somers notes that no one doubts Humphries’ dedication at this point, and Humphries has played well in stretches, but he has not been able to consistently sustain a high level of play.

He has also been unable to stay healthy, having not played a full season of football since his freshman year of college. And, given the level of compensation that even league-average LTs are making these days — Somers estimates that Humphries would earn at least $12MM per year on the open market — the Cardinals’ reluctance to engage in extension talks is understandable.

When asked about Humphries’ performance this season, new head coach Kliff Kingsbury was non-committal. Kingsbury said that Humphries is “continuing to improve, and that’s what we’ve asked of him. We just have to keep him coming. He’s still getting comfortable in our system, and we’re getting comfortable with him, but I like what I’ve seen so far.”

One way or another, the Cardinals will have to invest either big money or premium draft capital into the left tackle position in 2020. For his part, Humphries is trying not to think too much about it.

“Thinking about it is not going to do anything for you,” Humphries said. “You can think all day about a paycheck — it’s still not Friday. Friday is going to come when it comes. It’s inevitable, if you’re working all week like you’re supposed to, Friday is inevitable.”

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Cardinals Place D.J. Humphries On IR

The Cardinals placed left tackle D.J. Humphries on injured reserve, according to a team announcement. In related moves, the club signed offensive linemen Joe Barksdale and Rees Odhiambo from the Colts’ practice squad. 

It has been a disastrous year for the Cardinals on the whole, but their offense line has been hit particularly hard by injuries. So far this year, the Cardinals have trotted out eight different combinations of starting offensive linemen, lost four different linemen to IR, and are presently starting none of their projected front five. Heading into camp, the Cardinals’ line was comprised of A.Q. Shipley, Justin Pugh, Mike Iupati, Humphries, and Andre Smith. The first four were knocked out by injury and Smith was released in November due to inconsistent play in his eight starts.

Humphries, who turns 25 on Dec. 28, has been out of action since suffering a knee injury in the club’s Week 10 loss to the Chiefs. It’s a disappointing way for his season to end, and the Cardinals now have a decision to make regarding his future. The Cardinals can control him through 2019 thanks to his $9.625MM fifth-year option, but the deal is guaranteed for injury only. If the Cardinals want to move on from Humphries, they can cut him loose, provided that he can pass a physical early next year.

The former No. 24 overall pick pick in the 2015 draft is no stranger to the injury bug. He was inactive for every game as a rookie and a knee injury limited him to just five games in 2017.

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Cardinals To Exercise Fifth-Year Option on D.J. Humphries

The Cardinals are expected to exercise the fifth-year option in left tackle D.J. Humphries‘ contract, AZ Central’s Kent Somers writes

Taken with the 24th pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, Humphries will be owed $9.625MM in 2019 with Arizona exercising the option.

The move isn’t a surprising one, as the Cardinals have been impressed with Humphries’ progress at the position after picking it up in 2017. Though he shows solid potential, he has had trouble staying on the field.

He was inactive for every game as a rookie and began the following season at right tackle before moving to the opposite side of the line. After playing in 13 games in 2016, Humphries was limited to just five games in 2017 after suffering a knee injury against the 49ers in November.

He underwent surgery to repair a torn MCL and dislocated knee cap and expects to return to the field at the start of the 2018 season.

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Cardinals Sign QB Matt Barkley

With quarterback Drew Stanton suffering through a knee injury, the Cardinals have added some reinforcement at the position. The Cardinals announced this evening that they have signed quarterback Matt Barkley. The team has also promoted safety Harlan Miller from the practice squad. To make room on the roster, the team has placed safety Tyvon Branch, offensive tackle D.J. Humphries and tight end Ifeanyi Momah on injured reserve.

Matt Barkley (Vertical)We learned last week that Stanton had suffered a sprained knee during Thursday’s loss to the Seahawks, and there were reports that the team could turn to Barkley for a backup role. A former fourth-round pick, Barkley played in seven games (six starts) for the Bears last season, completing 59.7-percent of his passes for 1,611 yards, eight touchdowns, and 14 interceptions. The 27-year-old inked a two-year deal with the 49ers during the offseason, but he was released at the end of the preseason. Barkley also had a stint with Arizona between 2015 and 2016.

Assuming Stanton, who was filling in for the injured Carson Palmer, misses time, Blaine Gabbert will get the first shot at the starting gig. The 28-year-old appeared in six games (five starts) for the 49ers in 2016, completing 56.9-percent of his passes for 925 yards, five touchdowns, and six interceptions. He’s yet to appear in a game this season.

We learned earlier this week that Branch, Humphries, and Momah were likely to miss the rest of the season. Branch suffered a torn ACL during Thursday’s contest, and considering his impending free agency, his injury-filled tenure with the Cardinals could be over. Humphries dislocated his kneecap and suffered MCL damage on Thursday night, ending the third-year edge blocker’s season prematuraly. Momah, a former undrafted free agent out of Boston College, injured his knee against the Seahawks.

Miller, a 2016 sixth-round pick, started two games for Arizona as a rookie, compiling seven tackles and one interception. He was waived by the organization in early September but ultimately landed on the team’s taxi squad.

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D.J. Humphries Dislocates Kneecap

The Cardinals will be without their starting left tackle for the rest of the season after D.J. Humphries suffered a severe knee injury Thursday night.

Bruce Arians said Friday (via Mike Garafolo of NFL.com, on Twitter) that Humphries did not tear his ACL but instead dislocated his kneecap. Humphries, who also has MCL damage, will miss the rest of Arizona’s season. Arians said Thursday night he thought Humphries tore his ACL. While he dodged that, an extensive rehab process will be in store for the third-year edge blocker.

Arizona will move Jared Veldheer back to left tackle, Kent Somers of AZCentral.com tweets. Veldheer and Humphries switched positions going into this season. Veldheer played left tackle throughout his career coming into this season. John Wetzel, who stepped in for Humphries at left tackle against the Seahawks, will move to the right side going forward.

Arians said Humphries faces a three-month recovery timetable but will be ready for OTAs, and the fifth-year Cardinals coach believes the new left tackle’s chronic MCL troubles can be fixed.

The Cardinals will soon have two of their starting offensive linemen on IR. Mike Iupati remains on the injured list due to an elbow ailment.

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West Rumors: Chiefs, 49ers, Hoyer

Chiefs starting guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif exited Monday night’s game in the first quarter with an apparent knee injury. Tests on Tuesday morning will determine the extent of the injury and the team is hopeful that it is an MCL injury and not an ACL tear, Terez Paylor of the Kansas City Star tweets.

The Chiefs and Duvernay-Tardif agreed to a five-year, $41.25MM extension in the offseason, making him one of the league’s highest-paid interior linemen. Losing him for a lengthy period of time would be a setback for KC.

Here’s more from the West divisions:

  • 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan says he not given any consideration to a quarterback change, as Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee writes. For now, the Niners are sticking with Brian Hoyer, but it sounds like Shanahan will not hesitate to yank him if he feels it would benefit the team. “I think he needs to play better,” Shanahan said of Hoyer. “And I think we can play better around him. … When you have the time and you have guys open, you need to hit them. I thought he struggled with that at times (Sunday). I know he can do better. But I also know when he did make throws, guys weren’t great at catching them for him, either.” If Hoyer gets the hook, rookie C.J. Beathard will get a chance to show what he can do.
  • The Rams will add Mike Thomas to the roster and go to seven wide receivers when he returns from suspension this week, coach Sean McVay said (Twitter link via Alden Gonzalez of ESPN.com). Thomas was hit with the ban in July for PED use.
  • Cardinals tackle D.J. Humphries is still out with an MCL injury and coach Bruce Arians doesn’t expect to see him back until two weeks from now, Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com tweets.

NFC Notes: Cousins, Foster, Scandrick, Cards

The Redskins are using the franchise tag arrangement with Kirk Cousins once again, and some more information about how the franchise planned its negotiations this past summer has emerged. Washington submitted the offer Bruce Allen referenced — a five-year proposal worth just less than $110MM, with $53MM fully guaranteed at signing — in May, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports. But Rapoport adds the team did not do anything to sweeten its offer in the months that followed, leading to the stalemate dragging past July 17.

This lack of a notably different second offer came in spite of Allen meeting with Cousins’ agent in Chicago and the Redskins president meeting with Cousins and his father in a four-plus-hour summit Rapoport describes as friendly. Allen, per Rapoport, said he would make another proposal between then and the July 17 deadline. But it did not arrive, and the same offer ended up being a take-it-or-leave-it submission.

Washington cannot renegotiate with Cousins until after the season, when the price for a tag will skyrocket — up to approximately $34MM — and put the Redskins to a higher-stakes decision.

Here’s the latest from the NFC as the conference’s Week 1 slate winds down.

  • Orlando Scandrick broke his hand during the Cowboys‘ Sunday-night win over the Giants, Rapoport reports (on Twitter). However, the veteran slot cornerback underwent surgery on Monday and is adamant on playing in Week 2. Scandrick’s goal might have been a bit optimistic, though. The surgery was a success, per ESPN.com’s Todd Archer, but the Cowboys don’t sound like they’re counting on him next week. Week 3 looms as a target, Archer notes. Scandrick missed four games last season and struggled with foot trouble. He’s back in his primary role, though, and is a key cog on a Cowboys defense that lost multiple cornerback regulars in free agency.
  • While an official timetable for Reuben Foster‘s high-ankle sprain isn’t yet known, Kyle Shanahan is expecting the first-round pick to miss at least a month. The rookie 49ers coach said Monday, via Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter), the four-to-six-week range would be the typical hiatus length. The 49ers are down to their third option at outside linebacker after Malcolm Smith tore a pectoral muscle and was lost for the season in training camp.
  • Cardinals coach Bruce Arians told reporters on Monday morning that left tackle D.J. Humphries will miss a week or two with a sprained MCL. John Wetzel is expected to start in his absence. Humphries debuted on the left side on Sunday after he and Jared Veldheer switched positions in the offseason.

Zach Links contributed to this report.

Cards’ D.J. Humphries Out A “Few” Weeks

Cardinals left tackle D.J. Humphries is believed to sprained his right knee during today’s contest against the Panthers, and will likely be sidelined for a “few” weeks, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link).D.J. Humphries (vertical)

Arizona moved Humphries, a former first-round pick, from right tackle to left tackle heading into the 2017 season, shifting veteran Jared Veldheer from the blindside to right tackle in the process. As such, the Cardinals could potentially place Veldheer back at left tackle while Humphries is out, but that’s not what the club did today.

John Wetzel, who started eight games for Arizona a season ago, replaced Humphries against Carolina on Sunday. In 67 offensive snaps, Wetzel earned a sub-par 35.4 graded from Pro Football Focus, which ranked Wetzel as the third-worst tackle among 39 Sunday participants.

Over the next four weeks, the Cardinals face the Colts, Cowboys, 49ers, and Eagles.

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