Rookie coach Kliff Kingsbury didn’t hold back when asked Friday about how the former first-round pick showed up to camp.
“Not in shape, I guess,” the usually reserved Kingsbury said. “And that’s kind of where we’ll leave it. I mean, he’s on PUP and he’s working through that. When he is cleared, we’ll work with him.”
Nkemdiche, who is recovering from ACL surgery he had in December, began training camp on the physically unable to perform list. The team announced his release Saturday evening.
Kingsbury’s answer was a detour from his typical responses this offseason. The first-year head coach has developed a reputation for saying little about players and not naming names.
Nkemdiche, the 29th overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft, was arrested on June 6 for speeding and driving with a suspended license. A defensive lineman whose career has been riddled with injuries, he has 44 career tackles and 4.5 sacks — all coming in 2018.
The Cardinals did not pick up the fifth-year option on his contract.