The Cardinals have placed center Rodney Hudson on injured reserve, per a team announcement. Hudson has dealt with knee trouble since training camp, and while he played in the first four games of the season, he has been sidelined ever since.
It is fair to wonder whether this is the end of the line for Hudson, who reportedly contemplated retirement this offseason. In 2021, his first season with the Cardinals, he was one of Pro Football Focus’ worst-rated centers after years of high-level performance. Since he became a full-time starter in 2013, his third professional season, he had not registered a PFF grade below 71.0, but that number fell to 60.9 last season.
2021 also saw the typically-durable blocker miss five games due to rib and shoulder injuries, and combined with this year’s knee ailment, his health is clearly an increasing concern. He is under contract through 2023, though the Cardinals’ interior O-line has been hit hard by injury this year, and the club could seek to remake that unit this offseason.
Arizona first turned to Sean Harlow to replace Hudson, and then to former Bengals first-rounder Billy Price. Price never lived up to his draft status in Cincinnati, which is why he was available for the Cards to pluck him off the Raiders’ taxi squad in early October. While it appears he will continue operating at the pivot in the near-term, his performance has not improved. His dismal 38.6 overall grade, underscored by four penalties and four sacks allowed, is the second-worst mark in the league among players with enough snaps to qualify.
In other Cardinals news, the team signed kicker Tristan Vizcaino to the active roster. Matt Prater, who has battled a hip injury this year, will miss Arizona’s Week 10 contest against the Rams. Vizcaino has made nine of his 10 career field goal tries, though he is just 12-for-17 on PATs.