3 lofty expectations for DeAndre Hopkins with the Arizona Cardinals in 2020
What made the trade even crazier is that they didn’t have to give up all that much. In fact, the Cardinals won the trade in lopsided fashion.
Arizona sent running back David Johnson, along with a 2020 second-round pick and a 2021 fourth-round pick to Houston. Meanwhile, the Texans are giving the Cardinals Hopkins and a 2020 fourth-round pick in exchange.
Obviously, this trade has thrust the Cardinals into the spotlight. How will they respond? How will Hopkins impact the team?
Here are three lofty expectations for Hopkins in his first season with the Cardinals in 2020.
100-plus Receptions and 1,200-plus Yards
These might not seem like the craziest numbers. Over his last six seasons, Hopkins has actually averaged 1,300 per year. And over his last three seasons he’s over 100 receptions a year as well.
However, this is a new team — a new team with a second-year quarterback.
So there will be a learning curve for Hopkins. He needs to get acquainted with a new offense, new system and a new quarterback. But also a learning curve for Kyler Murray.
Murray had a very good rookie season, but he’s still early into his NFL career. The quarterback will likely face a few uphill battles. And that could hamper Hopkins’ numbers.
This is one of the best wide receivers in football we’re talking about, though. So the expectations are always high despite the situation.
Due to that, expect him to hit the numbers in 2020 that he is somehow making commonplace throughout his career.
Helping the Young Talent Around Him
This is a big one. Hopkins is now on an Arizona team that has some young wide receiver talent and a young quarterback.
Can Hopkins help them grow?
Yes, they’ve all already had the incredible fortune of having Larry Fitzgerald. And Fitzgerald is still there. However, he’s not the same player he once was.
Fitzgerald has proven he is ageless and can still produce nicely. And his wisdom is only going to grow. The advice he gives is likely more valuable than anything else.
The Cardinals need that star wideout, though. That’s where Hopkins comes in.
He’s the one that makes things easier for everyone on the field. Imagine the attention he will take away from the other receivers. They’ll get much more favorable matchups as Hopkins pulls multiple eyes towards him.
Now imagine Murray having a target he can throw to whenever he’s in trouble. He can throw the ball towards Hopkins and there’s a decent chance he’s the one coming down with it.
Hopkins is a type of weapon very few quarterbacks get to enjoy having. He will do wonders for Murray’s growth.
Finally, we have the postseason. This is an uphill battle because of their division. The Cardinals are in the NFC West, which boasts the Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers and the Los Angeles Rams.
Seattle and San Francisco made the playoffs last year, while Los Angeles missed out despite going 9-7. Arizona was the only team in the division without a record over .500, at 5-10-1.
However, the Cardinals have now added one of the best receivers in football to pair with their young stud quarterback. They also have the eighth-overall pick in the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft.
Could a few big moves position them to make a playoff push?
The Rams aren’t having the best offseason and there are some questions surrounding the 49ers.
While this doesn’t mean the Cardinals are guaranteed to definitely overtake them, both teams could stumble a little bit, especially Los Angeles.
Hopkins is a superstar. He can change a team’s fortunes. Now he has to do that with the Cardinals and help get them back to the postseason. Let’s get Fitzgerald one last Super Bowl push with the help of the newest addition to Arizona’s roster.