Bruce Arians on RBs: “I’m just not pleased with where we’re at right now”

GLENDALE, Ariz. – Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians is not happy with his running back situation. Andre Ellington, David Johnson and Marion Grice have all missed big chunks of time at training camp with hamstring injuries. You add that on top of how the existing and healthy running backs performed on Saturday at the Red and White practice, and they both total a long Monday evening for Arians and general manager Steve Keim, as they’ll be in search of more help for Arizona’s backfield.

“Yeah, we’ll search and see what’s available. I’m just not pleased with where we’re at right now at that position,” Arians said.

Although Arians said he wasn’t concerned with Ellington from an “assignment” standpoint, the fact that he continues to stand on the sidelines without pads alongside Johnson and Grice has Arians frustrated. Arians couldn’t stress how important it is for Ellington to do what he needs to do to get out on the field and get some reps in, especially with the Kansas City Chiefs coming to town on Saturday.

“Extremely important,” Arians said. “I’m not pleased with the amount of time that he and David (Johnson) have lost.”

The remaining running backs didn’t get the job done to Arians’ satisfaction in the goal line scrimmage on Saturday.

“The balls (were) on the ground, not hitting holes, (I) thought we should’ve scored on a couple of those runs where we were one on one with the safety or the backside linebacker, and we got stopped,” Arians said.

Arians says Johnson’s hamstring injury should’ve been “a two week deal,” instead it’s stunting his growth. Johnson can use all the Virtual Reality technology, and get all the mental reps he wants to. Until he gets out there with his teammates on a consistent basis and hits and gets hit, he’s missing the total experience, and Arians can’t have that.

“We’ve got to make plans in case it does (keep Johnson out longer), but sometimes those things reoccur,” Arians said. “He’s (Johnson) an unproven player, so we’ve got to see somebody.”

That somebody will not be running back Ray Rice, who Arians said he will not be taking a look at, nor will he consider bringing him in for a physical/workout/signing.

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