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As Heavy Workload Awaits, Chase Edmonds Now A Proven Product

Notes: Kenyan Drake, Dre Kirkpatrick out Sunday; COVID-19 hits Dolphins

RB Chase Edmonds had another nice showing last time out against the Seahawks.
RB Chase Edmonds had another nice showing last time out against the Seahawks.

Chase Edmonds astounded everybody when he rushed for 126 yards and three touchdowns as a last-minute replacement for David Johnson in New York last season.

Twelve months later, the Cardinals' backup running back gets a second act as the fill-in, but the element of surprise is long gone.

Edmonds is averaging 6.1 yards per carry and is third on the Cardinals with 222 receiving yards this season, so expectations are high that he will replace Kenyan Drake (ankle) capably against the Dolphins.

"I have that confidence that I can be a player in this league," Edmonds said. "Right now, it's moreso not making anything of it, going out there and executing how I execute. It's just going to be at a higher volume.

"When players make a certain situation more than it is or buy into the hype, that's when you start pressing the issue or having unnecessary pressure. There's no unnecessary pressure. I'm very confident and we're very confident as an offensive unit. We're jelling right now and we want to keep that momentum going until K.D. gets back."

Edmonds is projected to get the lion's share of the carries, while veteran D.J. Foster is expected to be promoted from the practice squad to back him up. Undrafted rookie Jonathan Ward is another option, Kingsbury said.

"(Foster) knows (the system) inside and out, can catch it, can run it, can do anything we need him to do as well as contribute on special teams," Kingsbury said. "We have a lot of confidence in him."

While the other running backs may give him a breather, this should be Edmonds' show, as he has proven to be one of the team's most explosive skill players in 2020.

There were positive signs of Edmonds' rushing potential throughout 2019, but it's his pass-catching which has hit a new gear. He has compiled more receiving yardage in seven games this year (222) than he did in his first two seasons combined (208) and trails only DeAndre Hopkins and Christian Kirk in that category.

"That was the biggest thing I worked on this offseason, was my receiving ability," Edmonds said. "I watched a whole lot of (Alvin Kamara) and Christian McCaffrey film and went to grinding. … I realized I could be a difficult matchup coming out of the slot for some 'backers. I feel like I've come a long way. Still got a long way to go, though. I really want to become one of the best receiving backs in the NFL, if not the best."

KIRKPATRICK WON'T PLAY AGAINST DOLPHINS

Dre Kirkpatrick (thigh) has been ruled out for Sunday, leaving the Cardinals thin at cornerback. Nickelback Byron Murphy will also miss the game after testing positive for COVID-19.

Reserve Kevin Peterson will likely see a full-time role, while newly-signed cornerback De'Vante Bausby will also be active, Kingsbury said. The Cardinals have cornerbacks Prince Amukamara and Jace Whittaker on the practice squad and could use Isaiah Simmons or a third safety in nickel packages as well.

Outside linebacker Devon Kennard (COVID-19) won't play, while defensive tackle Jordan Phillips (hamstring) and linebacker Ezekiel Turner (toe) are questionable. Tight end Maxx Williams (ankle) could return from injured reserve if he feels good enough to play, Kingsbury said.

For the Dolphins, running back Matt Breida (hamstring) has been ruled out and cornerback Jamal Perry (foot) is questionable. Miami's leading rusher, Myles Gaskin, was placed on injured reserve earlier in the week.

DOLPHINS ASSISTANT TESTS POSITIVE FOR COVID-19

Miami is dealing with a COVID-19 situation of its own, as an assistant coach is quarantining after testing positive and wide receiver Lynn Bowden Jr. was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list Friday afternoon.

The Dolphins are in the NFL's intensive protocol guidelines like the Cardinals, but were still scheduled to travel to Arizona on Friday.

Coach Brian Flores told the Miami media that the team feels like the issue is contained and it is not worried about an outbreak.

Images from practice at the Dignity Health Training Center, presented by Hyundai.

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