Arizona Cardinals' punter competition still a dead heat

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- With two preseason games left, neither of the Arizona Cardinals punters have separated themselves from the other.

Coach Bruce Arians compared the competition between Dave Zastudil and Drew Butler to the battle for the Cardinals’ third-quarterback job, meaning it'll go down to the last minute.

“They go back and forth,” Arians said of the punters. “Wouldn’t say either one has an edge right now.”

Butler, 26, replaced Zastudil, 36, after Zastudil injured his groin before the season opener and again in Week 5 in Denver. Butler averaged 42.1 yards per punt in 2014, while Zastudil hasn’t averaged less than 44.3 since 2007.

But Zastudil’s age and recent injury may play into the Cardinals’ decision as to which punter to keep.

“You have to consider it,” Arians said. “Drew did a really good job last year when he had his opportunities until the playoff game (when Butler averaged 34.8 yards per punt). That’s about the only game he struggled, so all those things will be factored in but it’s still the best guy for the job.”

Zastudil will punt Sunday night in Oakland and Butler will kick Thursday in Denver.