Arizona Cardinals could benefit from new personnel evaluator
The Arizona Cardinals have suffered through four consecutive non-winning campaigns with Steve Keim making the personnel decisions
Back in 2015, the Arizona Cardinals appeared to be in terrific shape. The club had put together three consecutive double-digit victory campaigns, an almost unheard of feat for the organization. Steve Keim, who had become the Cards general manager in 2013, had been named Pro Football Talk’s NFL Executive of the Year following two of those impressive seasons.
In the four years that have followed since, however, the Cardinals have failed to win more than eight matchups. Even more depressing is the fact that the squad won just three times in 2018, and just five times this past fall. Is it fair to wonder if all of that losing should lead to a shakeup in the Arizona front office?
After a sensational beginning, Keim has orchestrated way more hits than misses when it comes to personnel evaluations. Far too many of the team’s draft picks have gone by the wayside after contributing very little. There was also an embarrassing DUI arrest during the summer of ’18 that took Keim away from the Cardinals for five weeks.
Perhaps it’s time for Arizona to move in a different direction. A fresh perspective on the roster could be exactly what’s needed to get Big Red back to the postseason. There are several interesting candidates who could step in for Keim if team President Michael Bidwill decides to relieve his good friend of his duties.
Nick Caserio, who’s contract is set to expire, has been the New England Patriots Director of Player Personnel since 2008. During that time, the franchise has appeared in five Super Bowls, winning three of them. Of course, New England head coach Bill Belichick has final say on personnel moves, but the 44-year old Caserio is considered an up and comer nevertheless.
Another intriguing option for the Cards would be John Dorsey, who was recently fired by the Cleveland Browns. The 59-year old made some solid acquisitions (Jarvis Landry, Nick Chubb, Baker Mayfield, Odell Beckham Jr.) for the Browns, but his hiring of Freddie Kitchens was a big mistake. Dorsey also was the general manager of a Kansas City Chiefs squad that emerged victorious on 43 occasions during his four-year tenure (2013-16).
Former Houston Texans GM Rick Smith left football in 2017 to be with his ailing wife, who eventually lost her battle with breast cancer. The longtime executive is now ready to return, and was almost hired by the Washington Redskins last month. Smith was the Denver Broncos Director of Pro Personnel from 2000-05, and was Houston’s top front office guy from 2006-17.
One of the hottest names on the future general managers list is Ed Dodds of the Indianapolis Colts. GM Chris Ballard’s right-hand man has a reputation for being one of the best talent scouts in the league. Dodds spent several years with the Seattle Seahawks, and was considered by many to be former general manager John Schneider‘s secret weapon.
Admittedly, it’s highly unlikely that Bidwill will give Keim his walking papers this offseason. If that was the plan, it probably would’ve happened by now. One more losing season, however, could result in a trip to the unemployment line for Keim.