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Cardinals Position Overview 2020: Defensive Line

Marquee addition of Jordan Phillips brings needed boost to interior

DT Jordan Phillips had a breakout season in 2019 and will aim to duplicate it with the Cardinals.
DT Jordan Phillips had a breakout season in 2019 and will aim to duplicate it with the Cardinals.

With July here and training camp scheduled to start soon, will take a look at the Cardinals' individual position groups during this quiet time in the NFL, and give our opinions about where the groups stand prior to camp. The series begins today with the defensive line.

LOCKS: Jordan Phillips, Corey Peters, Zach Allen, Leki Fotu, Rashard Lawrence.

Phillips was the Cardinals' marquee addition in free agency and will be relied on to sustain the consistent interior pressure that was missing in 2019. Peters returns to anchor the middle of the run defense, while Allen aims to shake off an injury-plagued rookie season and become a key piece. Fotu and Lawrence, a pair of fourth-round picks, are expected to make the team, but need to get up to speed quickly in order to see the field consistently.

WORK TO DO: Jonathan Bullard, Trevon Coley, Miles Brown, Michael Dogbe, T.J. Carter, Adam Shuler.

Bullard re-upped with the Cardinals this offseason and has an inside track on making the roster. Coley -- who was added in free agency – and second-year players Brown and Dogbe will aim to impress during camp to secure a spot. Carter and Shuler are undrafted free agents who must catch the coaching staff's attention quickly after losing out on offseason work.


This was arguably the weakest position group on the team a season ago, which is why GM Steve Keim made it a priority in free agency and the draft. The top-end talent and depth looks much better than it did at the end of 2019. Beyond Phillips, though, there is not much proven pass-rushing ability. If a player with that skillset is available at the right price, the Cardinals could still add to the position.

Images of the defensive linemen on the 53-man roster heading into training camp