The Cardinals have released 22 players, including linebacker Chris Harrington, the team’s sixth-round draft pick; plus veteran defensive end Joe Tafoya and veteran linebacker Matt Stewart to get down to the 53-player limit.
Others include cornerbacks Michael Adams and Travarous Bain, defensive end Jason Banks, running back Steve Baylark, tackles Kelly Butler and Peter Clifford, defensive tackle Keilen Dykes, guard Jasper Harvey, safety Dennis Keyes, receiver Lance Long, guard Carlton Medder, tight end Brent Miller, a former Arizona State player; cornerback Demario Minter, linebacker Brandon Moore, a recent free-agent pickup; quarterback Anthony Morelli, receiver Jamaica Rector, center Pat Ross, tight end Alex Shor and running back Chris Vincent.
“There were difficult cuts,” coach Ken Whisenhunt said. “But we feel good about our team.”
Players who won battles for roster spots included receiver Sean Morey and rookie linebacker Ali Highsmith and veteran linebacker Monty Beisel.
In starting position battles, Travis LaBoy beat out Bertrand Berry at linebacker/defensive end and Deuce Lutui edged Elton Brown at right guard.
“It was a tough challenge for Deuce,” Whisenhunt said. “He stood up and proved his consistency.”
The Cardinals have only one healthy center in Lyle Sendlein, so left guard Reggie Wells will back up at center, with Brown backing up at left guard and at center.
The No. 3 receiver spot will be “in flux” week to week, depending on how the Cardinals plan to attack defenses, Whisenhunt said.
As for the Cardinals’ health, nose tackle Alan Branch suffered an ankle sprain Friday; his availability this week is uncertain.
Nose tackle Gabe Watson, who is coming back from knee surgery, will start working out this week. That leaves veteran Bryan Robinson at the spot.
Tackle Mike Gandy suffered a bruised knee, but Whisenhunt indicated he should be OK to play.
Center Al Johnson, also coming back from knee surgery, will start limited work this week. The Cardinals are hoping he’ll be able to play in their second game, at home vs. Miami.
EXTRA POINT: Linebacker Eduardo Castaneda has been moved to the practice squad as part of the NFL’s international program.