RB James Conner looking to make 2023 the baseline for his production moving forward

Arizona Cardinals running back James Conner enters the final year of his contract in 2024 and is coming off his best season in the pros. Even missing four games when he was on injured reserve with a knee injury, rushed for a career-high 1,040 yards in 13 games.

Conner isn’t content with that.

“That was the floor,” Conner said when he spoke to reporters during OTAs. “I want that to be the lowest I rush for in my career going forward. I’ve definitely got a lot of work to put in, but that’s the floor and not the ceiling.”

The Cardinals had a top-five rushing attack in 2023. They added running back Trey Benson to the roster as a third-round pick, signed DeeJay Dallas and had Michael Carter and Emari Demercado return.

Conner, now 29 years old, is respected around the league like some of the most productive backs in the NFL. His issue has been health. He has averaged 13 games a year since his career started and has yet to play in every game in a season.

Conner’s 1,000-yard season was the first for any Cardinals running back since David Johnson in 2016.

If he builds on 2023 and turns that into a better 2024, Arizona’s offense will be very hard to defend. With a productive run game and better receivers than last season, the offense might not only be a top-five rushing team, perhaps they can be a top offensive unit.

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Story originally appeared on Cards Wire