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Analyzing the initial 53-man roster

The Cardinals have gotten down to the 53-man roster. Surprises? Perhaps a couple, although the way the wind was blowing over the last few days of the preseason, maybe not so much. Once we got to the end of the fourth preseason game, it was looking good for undrafted ILB Lamar Louis, and the knee injury of Kareem Martin might have helped ILB Gabe Martin on to the final roster (as well as his pick-6), although Martin has caught their collective eye for a while. I think cornerback Cariel Brooks had a good chance to make the team until he played so poorly against the Broncos.

The one legit surprise -- in my eyes -- was the Cardinals keeping Olsen Pierre, meaning there are nine defensive linemen on the final 53. Nine! That's on a team with a 3-4 base defense that will use Chandler Jones as a defensive end in some passing situations. Then again, this could be partly for the future, not wanting to lose Pierre (and thinking he can play) when both Frostee Rucker and Calais Campbell are going into the last year of their contracts.

-- The roster breakdown, right now, looks like this: QB - 2 RB - 4 WR - 5 TE - 3 OL - 9 DL - 9 LB - 9 (counting Bucannon; sorry Deone) CB - 4 S --  5 ST - 3

-- So many wondered if Matt Barkley would stick, but as I have said many, many, many times, Drew Stanton was the No. 2 and Barkley simply didn't show enough to pass him up. The Cardinals will have a QB on the practice squad -- it could be Barkley -- but it was clear listening to Bruce Arians over the time in camp he was disappointed Barkley didn't come along faster.

-- The trade for Marcus Cooper underscored the need for a veteran cornerback. I wouldn't be surprised if the Cards kept looking at that position.

-- The same goes for backup tackle, although John Wetzel showed enough to stick for now.

-- Only one draft pick wasn't kept, cornerback Harlan Miller. I wouldn't be surprised if Miller came back on the practice squad, but if you are Miller, knowing how much the Cards needed cornerbacks, you have to be disappointed you couldn't make inroads in making the roster.

-- When in doubt, teams go younger. That's how you stay competitive.

-- Teams will start making waiver claims tomorrow. There is still a (good) chance this 53 won't be the 53 when the Cardinals return to practice Tuesday.

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