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Graphic shows Cardinals' poor usage of David Johnson this season

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Football News

This week's Thursday Night Football game for the Arizona Cardinals against the Denver Broncos was one for them to forget very quickly, but they only have themselves to blame.

The Cardinals suffered a 45-10 loss to the Broncos. Denver was so dominant that they jumped out to a 14-0 lead in less than seven minutes, which grew into a 28-3 lead in less than 16 minutes, before cruising to a dominant blowout.

The Broncos' defense was able to cause the Cardinals offense to turn the ball over five times throughout the game through three interceptions and two fumbles. They simply weren't able to get anything going throughout the game.

Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen finished the night with 194 yards, a touchdown, and three interceptions after completing 21 of his 39 passing attempts. The team only managed 69 rushing yards off 21 attempts.

What's embarrassing though is just how badly they've underutilized running back David Johnson this season. Thursday night was no different.

Johnson finished the game with just 39 yards off 14 carries, averaging 2.8 yards per carry. His longest carry only went for 10 yards.

The running back is one of the best in the NFL, but the Cardinals simply aren't using him to his fullest potential.

The Cardinals are not using David Johnson to his fullest potential

One graphic provided by James Koh through NFL Next Gen Stats clearly shows just how badly the Cardinals are underutilizing Johnson.

Koh blended all of Johnson's Next Gen Stats run charts together, revealing that the vast majority of his runs are between the tackles, which is crazy play calling for a back with his speed.

The Cardinals usage of David Johnson is baffling for a player of his talents

Koh posted tweeted this alongside a graphic of Melvin Gordon's runs for the Los Angeles Chargers vs Cleveland Browns in Week Six, just to show how badly Arizona is using their running back.

Johnson is being seriously underutilised when compared to a similar player in Melvin Gordon

For further comparison, here is Johnson's running chart from the game last night, showing the vast majority of his runs were once more between the tackles, which is ridiculous for a player of his ability.

Johnson's Next Gen Stats vs Broncos

The Cardinals' offense as a whole this season so far has been terrible, and Thursday night's embarrassing loss against the Broncos which saw five offensive turnovers may be the final straw for the team's offensive coordinator, Mike McCoy.

After the game, Arizona's head coach Steve Wilks said to ESPN that it was "premature" to talk about any changes that could be coming to the team, but it's clear that some must be made.

McCoy will likely be out the door soon at the Cardinals, especially when you take into account the poor usage of running back Johnson so far this season.

He could be gone before the team plays their Week Eight game against the San Francisco 49ers on October 28.

Mike McCoy
David Johnson
Arizona Cardinals
Melvin Gordon
San Diego Chargers
Denver Broncos

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