The Arizona Cardinals are trying to get younger but also better and are doing so by adding seasoned veterans
The Arizona Cardinals already had one strong veteran voice in the locker room in receiver Larry Fitzgerald. We’ve talked numerous times including recently how he has been a leader on and off the field.
On Monday Fitz talked to the attendees at the NFL’s Annual Meeting talking about mentorship and how players and front office need to come together for one another. On the field, he’s about to play his 16th season and still going strong.
Fitz is being joined by other guys over 30 who have had plenty of experience and can bring their knowledge of the game and leadership into a locker room full of young players. The Cardinals now have nine players age 30 or older on the roster.
Center A.Q. Shipley and linebacker Brooks Reed both are 32. Offensive lineman Marcus Gilbert is 31. Defensive tackle Corey Peters, tight end Charles Clay, and cornerback Robert Alford are all currently 30.
Five of these guys have been added to the roster since the end of the season, either through trade or free agency. It is clear that while the Cardinals are rebuilding with young talent, it is important to have talented veterans show them the way.
According to azcardinals.com, Fitz told owners that in order to mentor young players, they have to want to be helped. That is an important factor. Sometimes younger guys don’t want any help and do it on their own.
The one’s that truly want to succeed though will listen. The young guys already on the roster plus all the new draft picks that will be coming in a month will need to lean on these guys.
The Cardinals, despite what it may look like to some on the outside, I believe do know what they are doing. There is a method to the process. Let’s just hope they get the right guys come draft time who are ready to learn how it works in the NFL.