Some of the biggest moves of the off-season have involved players leaving the Arizona Cardinals. This includes the Miami Dolphins' acquisition of ILB Karlos Dansby. Dansby is a very athletic playmaker, but the Cardinals were unwilling to pay him the kind of money he got from the Dolphins. He signed a 5-year $43 million contract.
Arizona also released FS Antrel Rolle. The move was an effort to avoid a $4 million roster bonus that would have brought his 2010 salary up to $12 million. While Rolle is a very talented player, he's certainly not worth that much. The New York Giants signed Rolle to a 5-year $37 million deal.
The Cardinals lost another big name when they traded WR Anquan Boldin to the Baltimore Ravens for a 3rd and 4th round pick in this year's draft. Boldin signed a 4-year $28 million contract with the Ravens. Arizona traded the 4th round pick they acquired in this trade to the New York Jets for FS Kerry Rhodes.
The team agreed to terms with QB Derrick Anderson after he was released by the Cleveland Browns. Anderson signed a 2-year $7.25 million contract, and he is expected to compete with incumbent Matt Leinart for the starting job. However, it appears that the starting position is Leinart's to lose. Anderson has only completed 47.9% of his passes the past two seasons, but he will be one of the highest paid backup quarterbacks in the league.
The only other free agent acquisition of note has been OLB Joey Porter, who signed a 3-year $17.5 million deal with the club. The contract also includes up to $7 million of additional incentives. Although Porter has been productive, this is a very rich deal for an aging 33 year old player. Especially when you consider that they did not want to pay Karlos Dansby.
Since joining the Cardinals Porter has had a run-in with the law. He was arrested in Bakersfield, California under suspicion of driving under the influence. But it turns out that the police were the ones at fault in this case. Porter will not be charged with a D.U.I., and the arresting officer is under investigation for police brutality.
Let's take a look at the team's needs and their 2009 draft after the jump...
- Inside Linebacker: The departure of Karlos Dansby has left a gaping whole at the TED position. The team has depth but they will need to find a starter in the early rounds of the draft.
- Right Tackle: Levi Brown is expected to move over to the left side of the line this year. Opposite him the team may start Jeremy Bridges, who filled in admirably at left tackle last season, but there could be better options available in the draft.
- Cornerback: Arizona has some good depth in the secondary already, but they could use some more youth at the position. Despite re-signing Ralph Brown and Michael Adams, they may decide to take a cornerback in the later rounds of the draft.
- Tight End: The Cardinals re-signed incumbents Ben Patrick and Stephen Spach, both of whom are capable blockers, but they still lack a player with pass catching ability. This is still an option for them in the draft.
2009 Draft Results