Earl Watford's flexibility gives Cardinals ability to dress seven offensive linemen

TEMPE, Ariz. -- The more Arizona Cardinals versatile offensive linemen Earl Watford plays center, the better chance, it seems, he has of being part the team’s offensive line rotation on game day.

“We’d like to only dress seven linemen on Sunday,” coach Bruce Arians said. “If you can play three spots you have a lot of value in this league; you can play for a long time.

“If he can handle the center position, it’s more hats off to him. That’s just better for him we don’t have to dress eight guys.”

Watford already has experience playing tackle and guard. His only two career starts came at right tackle last season in place of Bobby Massie, and he was drafted as a guard after playing it at James Madison. Cheap nfl jerseys He’s added center to his repertoire this offseason and was described as a “Swiss Army knife” by offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin last week.

Watford, who was drafted in 2013, played in just eight games last season while being active for 12. If he continues to impress both Arians and Goodwin at center he can, at the very least, be the Cardinals' swing offensive lineman at all three positions next season. And that means he might be active for all 16 games.

But Arians made it clear that Watford is still competing for a starting spot.

“If you’re a backup,” Arians said, “you’re a starter.”
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