More shuffling on Cardinals' O-line

Dec 14, 2017 - 1:00 AM TEMPE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Cardinals' offensive line hasn't been nearly as decimated as the one belonging to their opponent this Sunday, the Washington Redskins, but it's been beaten up and battered just the same.

When the Cardinals play the Redskins, they will be using their seventh starting combination in front of quarterback Blaine Gabbert, who was sacked a season-high eight times last week in a win over the Tennessee Titans.

Two more changes are being made this week as rookie Will Holden gets the start at left tackle for the injured Jared Veldheer, who was placed on injured reserve with a fractured ankle, and Evan Boehm will start at right guard in place of the injured Earl Watford, who is out with a high-ankle sprain.

Boehm gets his second shot at right guard after being demoted following a string of poor performances there earlier in the season.

"He's been great. He's been ready to roll," head coach Bruce Arians said. "He's been really, really good."

Holden has made one start at left guard this year and has filled in as an emergency tight end on one occasion, but this will be his first NFL action at tackle, his natural position.

Asked how ready Holden is to play, Arians said, "We'll find out. He ain't got no more chances to not be ready, so he's going to be starting and he better be ready."

"He's big and he's athletic," Arians continued. "He'll get stronger and stronger as he grows and matures, but he's athletic and he's very smart."

In case he falters, the Cardinals brought in free agent Khalif Barnes, who practiced with the team for the first time on Wednesday. Barnes, an 11-year pro with 117 career starts, hasn't played in an NFL regular-season game since 2015.

He was in Houston, studying to become a medical sales representative while home-schooling his four young children when the Cardinals called.

"Have you ever home-schooled before?" Barnes asked, playfully. "That's worse than any nine-on-seven or (going up against) any player in the league. I'd rather go up against the old-school Dwight Freeney, Lawrence Taylor, Reggie White -- all of them in one game -- than have to home-school and baby-sit these kids. ... It's nonstop."

SERIES HISTORY: 123rd regular-season meeting. Redskins lead series, 74-46-2. This matchup dates to 1932 when the Cardinals were based in Chicago and the Redskins were known as the Washington Braves. The Cardinals have played the Redskins more times than any other team besides the New York Giants (126) -- Arizona's opponent next week in Glendale. The Cardinals and Redskins played in the NFC East together from 1970-2001. This week's meeting will be the eighth since the Cardinals moved to the NFC West in 2002. Arizona won the last two meetings, both at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Cardinals haven't won at Washington since 1998 and are winless in their last seven trips there.

--Free-agent quarterback Robert Griffin III told ESPN he turned down offers this past offseason from two NFL teams -- the Ravens and the Cardinals.

Griffin, the former Heisman Trophy winner and AP Offensive Player of the Year for the Redskins in 2012, apparently drew interest from Arizona even after the Cardinals had signed Blaine Gabbert in May.

"I was willing to come in and work behind an experienced veteran quarterback (Carson Palmer) who's done a lot of great things," Griffin explained. "They had the backup in (Drew) Stanton and they had also brought in Blaine Gabbert.

"Nobody lets four quarterbacks get practice time. That was the issue. It wasn't the coach (Bruce Arians). The coach is a great coach. He's a quarterback whisperer and I wanted to go there and learn from him. And it's a stable franchise, so that was all great. It just wasn't the right decision for me."

--Not practicing for the Cardinals on Wednesday were safeties Antoine Bethea (knee) and rookie Budda Baker (thigh), linebacker Gabe Martin (hamstring), defensive tackle Josh Mauro (ankle), guard Earl Watford (ankle) and running back Adrian Peterson (neck).

Head coach Bruce Arians said there hasn't been any progression with Peterson's injury and when asked if he thought the veteran would play again this season, said, "I have no idea."

--Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians when told snow flurries are in the forecast for Sunday's game against the Redskins in Landover, Md.: "Hopefully it's not Buffalo. That was amazing trying to watch that."

--In three career games at Washington, wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald has 20 receptions for 339 yards and two touchdowns. Of his five career touchdowns of 60 or more yards, two have come in his last two road games against the Redskins - a 62-yarder in 2008 and a 73-yarder in 2011.

NOTES: WR Larry Fitzgerald needs three receptions to reach 90 for the season. If he gets that on Sunday at Washington, it will mark his eighth season with 90 or more catches. No other player in NFL history has more than six seasons with 90 or more receptions. ... LB Josh Bynes has two interceptions in eight career games at University of Phoenix Stadium. He had none in 69 career games played at 26 other NFL venues. ... WR Carlton Agudosi was re-signed to the practice squad on Wednesday. He had been released from the active roster two days earlier.

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