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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Jess Root

Eno Benjamin ‘looks like he could be a starting running back’

Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury is not typically to single out praise for individual players, especially in the offseason program. However, he has been effusive about his praise of third-year running back Eno Benjamin.

Twice in the final week of OTAs, he had unsolicited compliments for the former seventh-round pick out of Arizona State.

He had more to say during mandatory minicamp.

“Eno Benjamin has been tremendous,” Kingsbury said Tuesday. “(He is) another guy who never had an offseason and he’s out there and looks like he could be a starting running back.”

That is the strongest statement we have heard yet about Benjamin, a player Kingsbury said last year he was unsure would make the final roster as a rookie in 2020.

With Chase Edmonds having departed in free agency, there is a role on offense open. James Conner, who signed a three-year deal to return to the team, is the lead dog. He will be the workhorse like Kenyan Drake was in 2020. But Benjamin appears to have the inside track to be the guy who spells Conner.

The comments we are hearing about Benjamin now remind us of what was said by coaches for three seasons about Edmonds, who was a starter last season.

Benjamin seems to have greatly benefitted from the line reps of the offseason program this year, something there was none of in 2020 and very little in 2021.

It isn’t to say he is going to be a breakout player this season and rush for 1,000 yards, but he appears to be putting himself in a position to not only make the team but force Kingsbury to use him on offense in 2022.

Listen to the latest from Cards Wire’s Jess Root on his podcast, Rise Up, See Red. Subscribe on Apple podcasts or Spotify.

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