Five Obstacles the Arizona Cardinals Must Overcome in 2017

Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

Odds are, the Cardinals are going to lose a really good player on defense

Free agency alters the NFL landscape on a yearly basis. Sometimes tough decisions have to make big decisions on veteran players, weight cost vs value, and sometimes they make the wrong choice. It’s an unenviable task, deciding who stays and who goes.

This off-season is going to be a tough one in Arizona. A defense that ranked second in yards given up, fifth in takeaways, and first in sacks has a large number of free agents they’ll have account for.

Chandler Jones was a key acquisition for the Cardinals in the last off-season, and had a terrific year, with 11 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, and 15 tackles for a loss. He seems an almost certain candidate for the franchise tag.

Calais Campbell has been the catalyst on the Cardinals defense for a number of years, but he could be the odd man out. He has earned a big contract, and there just might not be enough money to go around in Arizona. He would be a big loss.

The secondary also has some big free agents, including safety Tony Jefferson and cornerback Marcus Cooper. Replacing starting talent isn’t easy, but the Cardinals seem destined to have to find new starters at at least a couple of spots on defense.