FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Hartington native and long-time NFL veteran Russ Hochstein has signed a one-year free agent contract with the Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals signed the 11-year NFL pro to help fill out depth on their offensive line.
This is the 34 year-old Hochstein’s fourth team in his NFL career.
The former Nebraska Cornhusker All American was originally drafted in the fifth round by the Tampa Bay Bucanneers in 2001.
He played for the New England Patriots for seven years. In his years as a Patriot, Hochstein started in two Super Bowls, and played in a third, narrowly losing. He helped the Patriots earn two NFL titles and now owns two Super Bowl Rings and a college national championship ring from his days as a Cornhusker.
In his years as a Patriot he started in 36 games. The Patriots took full advantage of Hochstein’s versatility and athleticism, starting him at guard, center, fullback and tight end.
He was traded to the Denver Broncos and spent three years in Denver before being released this spring.
In his time as a Bronco, he played in 46 regular season games, starting 16 of those. He also started in both of the Broncos two playoff games last year.
The Cardinals will begin the pre-season with the Hall of Fame game next Sunday in Canton, Ohio against the New Orleans Saints.
The Cards will travel to Kansas City to take on the Chiefs on Aug. 10 in their second pre-season contest of 2012. The Cardinals will also play Oakland and Tennessee in the pre-season before wrapping up the pre-season with an Aug. 30 home game against the Denver Broncos.
The 6-4, 305 Hochstein is expected to be a versatile addition to the Cardinals’ line up. He is a solid veteran to throw into a mix that includes several young players as the Cards drafted linemen Bobby Massie, Nate Potter and Senio Kelemete.
The Cardinals are coached by Ken Whisenhunt, who has been at the helm for five years, now.
Hochstein’s position coach is Russ Grimm, a Hall of Fame lineman with the Washington Redskins. Grimm has been on the Cardinals’ staff for five years, now.
During his long career, he has made starts at center, guard, tight end and fullback.
He has also been a part of the line that provided the protection for future Hall of Famer Tom Brady during the Patriot’s perfect regular season. Hochstein was also on the line during Tim Tebow’s break-out season with the Broncos.
Hochstein is the son of Gayle and Barb Hochstein of Hartington. He is a 1996 graduate of Cedar Catholic High School.