Arizona Cardinals: Johnson’s Emergence Fun to Watch Amidst Poor Year


David Johnson continues to put up impressive numbers, and was fun to watch during a season in which the Arizona Cardinals failed to live up to expectations.

The Arizona Cardinals were supposed to run away with the NFC West, march to the Super Bowl, and perhaps walk away with the Lombardi Trophy in Houston, Texas on February 5.

Instead, the Cardinals are currently 6-8-1 and in a position in which nobody could have expected. They’re not playing for a playoff spot like they have in the last several seasons, but rather a draft pick. It’s unfamiliar territory for these Cardinals, and something they should be able to avoid next season.

Regardless of the season in which they failed to live up to the hype, one thing was made clear this year: David Johnson is going to be a star.

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In the second season of his career, Johnson has followed up an impressive rookie year with an even better sophomore season. The Northern Iowa product has compiled 1,233 rushing yards this season, which is good for fifth overall.

Johnson’s 16 rushing touchdowns trails New England’s LeGarrette Blount for the league-lead, as he has 17 of his own. In their win against Seattle on Christmas Eve, Johnson broke several records, and carved himself into Cardinals’ history after another monstrous game.

Johnson rushed for 95 yards, reached the end zone three times and recorded 41 receiving yards on four receptions. It was the 10th time this season that Johnson has scored, and fifth time he has rushed for more than 95 yards.

It’s not just the threat he poses when running the ball, it’s his ability to hurt opposing defenses as a wide out. Johnson has had at least four receptions in every game this season and averages 56 receiving yards per game. In Weeks 10-13, the 23-year old recorded a receiving touchdown in each game to go along with three rushing touchdowns over that span.

DJ averages 82.2 rushing yards per game, too, to complement his 56 receiving yards. Johnson averages 138.2 total yards per game, and has established himself as the best offensive player the Cardinals have in just his second season.

Johnson has compiled an impressive resume in just two seasons. If the Cardinals were on their way to the playoffs, DJ should have easily been a candidate for the league’s Most Valuable Player.

If the Cardinals are able to bounce back next season and compete, Johnson is sure to be the guy that Bruce Arians relies on.