Cardinals C Rodney Hudson a top-10 interior O-lineman based on players, coaches, execs

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The Arizona Cardinals got arguably the best center in the NFL this offseason when they acquired Rodney Hudson in a trade from the Las Vegas Raiders. They then extended his contract so he is under contract through 2023.

He was recognized by Touchdown Wire as the best center in the league.

In rankings from ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, calculated with votes from NFL players, coaches and executives, Hudson is not best center or best interior lineman, but he makes the top 10.

He ranks ninth overall. He fell from sixth overall to ninth in one year.

Voters had him ranked as high as fourth and as low as 15th.

Hudson is still regarded as one of the game’s best centers despite a 66.3% pass-block rate and an offseason trade from Las Vegas to Arizona. The Cardinals are banking on his intangibles to impact Kyler Murray’s game.

“At Florida State, we used to call him Mr. Velcro: ‘Please don’t slam me, Mr. Velcro,'” said a former Seminoles teammate and longtime NFL player. “He’s just always been a different level athletically, and that hasn’t really changed.”

As an AFC defensive coach added, “When I found out [Las Vegas] was trading guys like that, I was like, why didn’t we get him? He still has something left — at least two to three really good years.”

The Cardinals are confident he is a significant upgrade over Mason Cole, who was the starter last season. They now have him for three years, which matches the window the AFC coach believes he will still be very good.

He is 32 years old and a three-time Pro Bowler. He was not penalized even once last season.

Among centers, he is ranked second behind Detroit’s Frank Ragnow.

His presence should pay dividends offensively for Arizona in 2021.

Listen to the latest from Cards Wire’s Jess Root on his podcast, Rise Up, See Red. Subscribe on Apple podcasts or Spotify.

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