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Arizona head coach Steve Wilks acknowledged Monday that the team needs to be more "creative" in finding ways to get Johnson the ball in space, Darren Urban of the Cardinals' official site reports. "We talked about that," Wilks said, referring to his conversations with offensive coordinator Mike McCoy regarding Johnson's usage. "We've got to utilize David from the standpoint of getting him out of the backfield, putting him in the slot, putting him out there to try and create that matchup that we need."
After making a full recovery from a dislocated wrist that cost him nearly all last season and signing a lucrative contract extension ahead of Week 1, Johnson appeared primed for a massive three-down role heading into his fourth NFL campaign. Unfortunately for fantasy owners, Johnson has only managed 118 total yards and a touchdown on 28 touches (22 carries, six receptions), with his limited work in the passing game particularly alarming. The Cardinals' puzzling decision to deploy Johnson primarily as a between-the-tackles runner rather than utilizing him in space -- where his high-end speed and agility make him a game-changing mismatch -- seems to have hindered the 26-year-old's effectiveness thus far, so it's at least encouraging that Wilks is receptive to adjusting the team's playcalling. It's unclear if any schematic changes would also be accompanied by a switch at quarterback, as Wilks was unwilling to say Monday whether he would replace incumbent starter Sam Bradford with first-round rookie Josh Rosen ahead of Sunday's game against the Bears.
Added 10:19 am (EST)
Added 10:19 am (EST)
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