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Cardinals Need More Trey McBride, Maxx Williams With Ertz Done

Notes: Humphries, Murphy remain day-to-day

Tight ends Maxx Williams (left) and Zack Ertz after a play in Carolina earlier this season.
Tight ends Maxx Williams (left) and Zack Ertz after a play in Carolina earlier this season.

Kliff Kingsbury confirmed on Wednesday that tight end Zach Ertz's season is over after he suffered a knee injury, but the coach expressed confidence in rookie Trey McBride to produce in his absence.

"There's no doubt he's got a great skill set," Kingsbury said. "We're not going to try and make him replace Zach Ertz. That wouldn't be fair to a young player. But we're really excited about his upside and what he can do. The more reps he gets, the better he will get."

McBride is considered the future after the Cardinals drafted him second round in April's draft. Still, with Ertz's season over with seven games remaining, McBride will receive more playing time than expected. McBride has four catches for 31 receiving yards in 2022.

There's also the possibility veteran Maxx Williams will get elevated from the practice squad.

"We're going to see what it looks like game plan-wise," Kingsbury said. "I would say he's definitely in the mix to be one of the guys called up."

Williams started on the active roster, but lingering injuries led the Cardinals to move him to the practice squad. Now he may be needed. And Williams' personality and aura in the locker room have not changed. The veteran has remained professional, which is why the organization respects him.

"I'm just going to do what they ask," Williams said. "I'm here to play football, win games, and have fun with the team. So prepare for whatever they want me to do, game plan this week, and Monday night, let things roll."


Kingsbury didn't share many details about the release of running back Eno Benjamin, which came Monday afternoon.

Benjamin rushed for 299 yards and had two touchdowns, while producing 184 receiving yards and 24 receptions in 10 games this season.

"We're always going to do what's best for the organization," Kingsbury said. "I'm not going to get into a lot of details on it, but it's just one of those cases."


Kingsbury said tackle D.J. Humphries and cornerback Byron Murphy remain day-to-day with back injuries. Safety Budda Baker had some soreness after playing through an ankle injury Sunday against the Rams but seems OK.

"He didn't do too much (Wednesday) and I'm hoping throughout the week, he feels good to go," Kingsbury said.

The first injury report of the week is released Thursday.