The Drive with Jody Oehler

The Drive with Jody Oehler

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Where Is Rodney Hudson?

We are mostly doomed as a society because we almost never give attention to the stories that we should be talking about and almost always give attention to stories that create a superficial emotional response.

For example, earlier this week a Google engineer claimed an AI system had become self aware. Kind of a big deal. Yet, trending that same morning on social media was Kim Kardashian ruining Marilyn Monroe's dress!

Kind of feels like a bigger deal robots might be alive but I digress.

We aren't going to make the same mistake with the Cardinals minicamp. While Kyler Murray no-showed his media availability, becoming the only starting QB in the NFL to shirk their responsibility after minicamp the much bigger real story was Rodney Hudson no-showing the entire mini-camp.

What are those things? Does Hudson want more money? Do the Cardinals want him to accept less money? Has he lost his passion for football? At 33, does he just want a longer summer break?

We don't know. We do know the Cardinals signed him to a 3 year, $30 million dollar deal last offseason after acquiring him. We also know that at the time that made him one of the five highest paid centers in the league. We also know that Hudson is now the 7th highest paid center in the league after a flurry of market re-setting deals in the last year.

Does Hudson want the same no frills bag drop that Aaron Donald got from the Rams? The Rams set a new precedent by giving a current player a bunch of new money without extending his deal. Of course, Rodney Hudson and Aaron Donald aren't the same kind of players but precedent is precedent.

Or maybe the Cardinals are enamored with creating some more cap wiggle room by cutting his salary after Hudson missed five games due to injury and finished the season as the 31st ranked Center in football, as graded by PFF?

At this point, it doesn't really matter. The Cardinals need Hudson on the field or their entire season is in jeopardy. Hudson embodies the physicality this offense thrived with last season. He's an invaluable resource for Kyler Murray. He's a devastating physical presence when healthy. The Cardinals offense needs Hudson to be at their best.

Their only alternative is Justin Pugh, a career long guard. Pugh, in fact, sounded a little too excited about a position change earlier this week.

Of course Pugh moving to center just creates a hole at guard so I'm not sure how anyone wins in that scenario.

All eyes this offseason have been on Kyler Murray and his contract but if Rodney Hudson isn't on the field when the season begins, all of our eyes will have a hard time staying on Kyler Murray as team after team flushes him from the pocket.

Whatever issues the Cardinals have with Rodney Hudson need to be fixed ASAP or else the Cardinals season will already be in jeopardy.

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