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Haason Reddick Thinks Outside The Box

Posted Oct 3, 2017

With Golden out and Cardinals promoting ILB Wright, rookie will get time at outside linebacker

Rookie linebacker Haason Reddick could be getting more work outside now that Markus Golden is hurt.

As a defensive end his last year in college, Haason Reddick had 9½ sacks and 22½ tackles and made life hard on opposing quarterbacks.

The rookie also showed he could work inside as a linebacker at the Senior Bowl, a potential dual threat for any defense.

“I think that was initially part of the plan,” Reddick said Tuesday. “That’s a reason they drafted me at 13, a guy who you could create different packages for and get a lot of our great players on the field at the same time.”

While the Cardinals like the idea of their No. 1 draft pick continuing on his path as a speedy inside linebacker who sometimes can make an appearance as a pass rusher, circumstances change. So too will Reddick’s role.

With outside linebacker Markus Golden going on injured reserve Monday after tearing his ACL, the Cardinals officially replaced Golden on the roster Tuesday by promoting linebacker Scooby Wright from the practice squad.

Wright is an inside linebacker, with the team eschewing a chance to promote two outside linebackers on the practice squad – Bryson Albright and Obum Gwacham.

With moneybacker Deone Bucannon returning last week to team with veteran Karlos Dansby as starters on the inside, and veteran Josh Bynes an option as a backup inside linebacker – along with Wright – Reddick is ostensibly freed up to play more on the outside.

Reddick said his “rush end” position at Temple actually called for occasional drops into coverage, giving him confidence in working outside.

“I don’t think it’ll be much of a difference,” he said. “I just need to get into the plays … and learn them from a different view.”

On the inside, Bynes did not play a defensive snap last week with Bucannon’s return. Bucannon played 42 defensive snaps, Reddick 48, Dansby 77.

Coach Bruce Arians said Monday Reddick was an option outside, although it would probably only be in special packages at first.

“He can’t learn it all in one day,” Arians said.

Reddick understands that, acknowledging the learning curve has been steep at times at inside linebacker.

“The steps we were taking, I definitely felt were needed, because of the more reps I got at inside linebacker the more comfortable I started to feel,” Reddick said. “Now, unfortunately what happened to Markus, hated that it happened to him, I’ll move to outside linebacker and take the same approach.”

PRACTICE SQUAD MOVES

The Cardinals also filled the two open spots on their practice squad, bringing back tackle Vinston Painter and also signing linebacker Connor Harris. Harris, an undrafted rookie who was with the Jets in the offseason, is the NCAA all-time leader in tackles after recording 633 at Lindenwood.

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