Plenty of safety options available for Arizona Cardinals
If Tony Jefferson and D.J.Swearinger depart in free agency there are quality replacements the Arizona Cardinals could sign
Many NFL experts seem to believe that Tony Jefferson will soon be an ex-Arizona Cardinal. Salary cap restraints and escalating salaries for safeties are making his return to the desert extremely unlikely.
There’s more of a chance that D.J.Swearinger could be back. He’ll likely be offered less than Jefferson on the open market. His contract demands may be more in line with what Arizona will be able to spend at the position.
But General Manager Steve Keim will have other options. Besides Jefferson and Swearinger, there are other solid safeties who are also free agents.
Barry Church has been a tackling machine during his seven seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. He’s by no means a flashy type, but he’d provide stability to Arizona’s secondary. With just five career interceptions, Church’s strength is defending the run.
Bradley McDougald, like Church, is also a sure tackler. But his 21 pass breakups over the last three seasons indicate that he’s a solid pass defender too. He had his best campaign last year, when he recorded 91 tackles, two picks and 10 passes defensed for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
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Johnathan Cyprien may be the best run-defending safety in free agency. He’s tallied no less than 102 tackles in a season during his four years in the league. His coverage skills could use some work.
T.J.McDonald has been a solid performer for the Los Angeles Rams since he was drafted in 2013. The downside to signing the 6’2″, 217lb former USC Trojan is that he may be facing a league suspension. He’s currently on probation after he was found to be driving under the influence of drugs last May.
Quintin Demps has played nine seasons in the NFL for four different clubs. At 31, he’s coming off of the finest campaign of his career. He recorded 55 tackles, six interceptions and nine passes defensed for the Houston Texans in 2016.
Bringing back Rashad Johnson to the organization would be an interesting idea. He’s once again an unrestricted free agent after spending a year with the Tennessee Titans. His knowledge of the Cardinals’ defense would make his return a smooth one.