The Arizona Cardinals allowed David Johnson just one carry Sunday afternoon, but head coach Kliff Kingsbury downplayed the running back's numerous injuries. Johnson's back, knee, and ankle injuries may be more severe than what Kingsbury led on, though, as Arizona is hosting former Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi on a free agent visit. Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the visit -- which will extend into Tuesday -- could result in a signing if all goes well.
Ajayi has been out of the league since tearing his ACL in Week 5 of the 2018 season, but has the resume that many teams covet after having 562 carries for 2,516 yards and 13 touchdowns in four seasons, averaging 4.5 yards per carry. Ajayi began to look like the running back that had a breakout 2016 season with the Miami Dolphins after he was traded to the Eagles in 2017, when he had 260 carries for 1,272 yards and eight touchdowns, averaging 4.9 yards per carry and earning a Pro Bowl berth.
Providing an excellent combination of speed and power for the Eagles during their Super Bowl run, Ajayi finished with 70 carries for 408 yards and a touchdown in seven games with Philadelphia, averaging 5.8 yards per carry. He was the Eagles' No. 1 back in the postseason that year, carrying the ball 42 times for 184 yards (4.4 yards per carry) and having six catches for 70 yards. ACL surgery ended an injury-plagued 2018 season for Ajayi, who ran 45 times for 184 yards and three touchdowns (4.1 yards per carry) in five games.
The Cardinals are depleted at running back with Johnson and Chase Edmonds the only two backs active in Sunday's win over the New York Giants, with Edmonds getting 27 of the team's 28 designed carries. Johnson had the first carry of the game, but took a back seat to Edmonds the remainder of the way. a higher workload, as a precautionary measure.
"Losing D.J. Foster late in the week in practice put us in a bind and we wanted to make sure Dave only played if we really needed him," Kingsbury said. "We were just being smart. It was a knee-based deal. Chase needed to be spelled, but we wanted to make sure Dave came (out of there) clean for later on in the season."
Johnson was a limited participant in practice late last week and was active for Sunday, but the Cardinals working out Ajayi could play into how severe Johnson's injuries are. If Ajayi signs, the Cardinals will either have him back up Edmonds while Johnson heals up (meaning he'll be out a few weeks) or Ajayi will be just extra running back depth behind Johnson and Edmonds.
Johnson's numerous injuries will be something to monitor over the course of the week, especially since the Cardinals are looking to add another back.