4. Trading for Chandler Jones
Keim turned one of his biggest whiffs (Jonathan Cooper) into a trade piece to acquire one of the best edge rushers in the NFL. The Cardinals acquired Chandler Jones for a second-round pick and the 2013 first-round bust. While that was a steep price to pay, Jones has continued to be one of the best players in the NFL at a premium position.
Since coming to the desert, Jones has done nothing but dominate off the edge. In three seasons as Cardinal, the 29-year-old has tallied 41 sacks and was the league leader in the same statistic in 2017. He’s earned two Pro-Bowl nods and an All-Pro nod as an Arizona Cardinal, and I don’t expect him to slow down anytime soon.
Even better; Jones is locked up through the 2021 season, meaning he’ll be a key part of the team for the foreseeable future. Maybe even more impressive, Jones proved that the heavy cost to get him was a steal. That doesn’t happen much when teams deal with the New England Patriots, but Keim did it.
There aren’t many weaknesses to Jones’ game. He’s one of the best pass-rushers in the NFL, but he’s also one of the elite run defenders. The Khalil Mack-Bears trade proved that edge rushers’ value is at all an all-time high, and Keim didn’t pay that high-toll. This is simply one of the best trades in Cardinals history and recent NFL memory.