It’s roster-trimming season in the NFL, so it’s not particularly surprising to see the news that some players won’t be on a franchise’s official depth chart ahead of the 2022 season. That said, the Arizona Cardinals made a pretty surprising move on Monday. Arizona parted ways with veteran linebacker Devon Kennard, as reported by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
After drafting 2 OLBs, the #AZCardinals are releasing veteran Devon Kennard, source said.
Kennard was penciled in as a starter and had a strong camp, but Cardinals are going go give the young players more opportunities.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) August 29, 2022
In one sense, it’s not out of the question to see Devon Kennard released by the Cardinals, who selected a pair of linebackers in the third round (Cameron Thomas and Myjai Sanders) and another in the seventh round (Jesse Luketa).
However, it’s also pretty unexpected in a sense that Kennard, an eight-year NFL veteran, was cut after he was named a starter on the Cardinals’ first depth chart. The USC product had a strong training camp, which did nothing to change the fact that he was seen as a projected starter at outside ‘backer for Arizona.
But it was not to be. Kennard took to Twitter shortly after the news, saying “Cole world” and that he is going to “see what God has in store for him next.”
Kennard has never made a Pro Bowl but has started 72 out of 111 career games, tallying 26.5 career sacks. He inked a three-year, $20 million deal with Arizona back in 2020. It seems likely that he will land on his feet with another team, possibly even before the start of the 2022 season.
As for Arizona, they’re likely to go with some combination of their rookies in place of Devon Kennard in 2022.