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Arizona Cardinals Counting Heavily on Linebacker Kevin Minter This Season

June 21st, 2014 at 3:19 AM
By Steve Smith

The Arizona Cardinals will be entering training camp next month with some questions at the linebacker position.

'IMG_8581' photo (c) 2008, donielle - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/
There is no doubt that the 2014 edition of the Arizona Cardinals will miss inside linebacker Karlos Dansby.

The popular Dansby signed a big free agent contract in March to take his talents to the shores of Lake Erie, where he'll play for the Cleveland Browns this coming season.

Dansby paced the Red Birds with 122 tackles in 2013. However, life and players move on in the NFL and now it's time for second-year linebacker Kevin Minter to step up and produce for Bruce Arians' squad.

The LSU product was drafted in the second round by the Cards in 2013 and played almost exclusively on special teams last year. In 13 games, Minter recorded four tackles.

Minter has been active in team OTA's so far. He needs to be – he'll have a much bigger role in 2014.

Head coach Bruce Arians has already noticed the difference between this year and last year.

"He's a different person," Arians told artesianews.com. “Checking back with his folks at LSU, his freshman year he was kind of like he was last year — lost. His sophomore year he was thrown into a leadership role and really relished it. He has done a really nice job of accepting the role he’s got and trying to expand on it.”

Minter will be given the added responsibility of calling the defensive signals as well.

"You're the leader of the defense, big shoes to fill," Arians said.

Learning the defensive signals was not that difficult, according to Minter.

"Once you get used to doing it, after you do it throughout high school and college and stuff, it kind of just comes to you,” he said. “You’ve got to learn their language, their terminology and how they call different things and stuff like that, but other than that it’s almost the same here (as it was at LSU).”

Now that Dansby has departed, Minter seems poised and ready to take on the new opportunity that he's been given.

“It’s exciting when you’re able to actually do what you were brought in here to do,” Minter stated. “I paid my dues last year, I feel like, just standing by Karlos and watching him, watching a true professional work, and I feel like it’s my time now.”

Yes it is.

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Tags: Arizona, Arizona Cardinals, Bruce Arians, Football, Kevin Minter, NFL

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