The Arizona Cardinals may not need to use an early round draft pick on a running back in 2017, but based on the current structure of the team's roster, head coach Bruce Arians' squad will likely be in the market for a ball carrier in next week's NFL Draft.
With star David Johnson under contract through the 2018 season, the Cardinals have a bell cow back to build around, but at this point, it's uncertain how the team's depth behind Johnson will shake out this season.
According to a report by Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle, the Cardinals were one of three teams that watched Indiana product Devine Redding work out privately.
Redding is anticipated to be selected in the later rounds of this week's draft or sign with a team as an undrafted free agent, but the former Hoosiers' back has plenty of upside.
In three seasons with Indiana, the 5-foot-8, 205-pound Redding amassed 508 carries for 2,252 yards and 17 rushing touchdowns. Though Redding wasn't much of a receiving threat for the Hoosiers, he pushed his way into the school record books by notching back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons.
Neither of Johnson's primary backups from the 2016 season --veterans Chris Johnson and Andre Ellington-- have made plans to return to the Cardinals as a ball carrier in 2017 yet. Chris Johnson is still weighing his options while Ellington has re-signed with the Cardinals on a one-year contract, but plans to transition to the wide receiver position this offseason.
The Cardinals have running backs Kerwynn Williams and Elijhaa Penny under contract for the 2017 season, but Williams has yet to spend a full season in the NFL while Penny spent the 2016 campaign on Arizona's practice squad.
Though the Cardinals certainly have more important priorities than finding a primary backup for David Johnson in next week's draft, the decision to watch Redding work out suggests Arizona may consider using a draft pick on a running back.