There are a group of players with expiring contracts who may not be offered new deals by the Arizona Cardinals front office
Over the next several weeks, the Arizona Cardinals decision-makers will be putting in long hours down at the office. With free agency just around the corner, rest assured that general manager Steve Keim and his helpers are up to their ears in player evaluations. Figuring out which of their own free agents they’d like to retain in 2020 could be the first order of business on the Cards offseason agenda.
After spending the past five years in the desert, veteran A.Q. Shipley may be forced to move on from the Cardinals. The presence of two young centers, Mason Cole and Lamont Gaillard, could make the 33-year old expendable in the eyes of the organization. Arizona was impressed with Cole after his 16 starts for them in 2018, and the coaching staff appears to be high on the 24-year old Gaillard as well.
Another experienced member of the Cards, Charles Clay, may also be looking for a new employer when the signing period gets underway in March. Two of the franchise’s other tight ends, Maxx Williams and Dan Arnold, are both under contract for the upcoming campaign. An upgrade at the spot could also be in order after head coach Kliff Kingsbury‘s “Air Raid” offense got very little out of the position in 2019.
Brett Hundley is a decent option for the Cardinals backup quarterback gig, but management could certainly do better. There are two attractive free agent passers (Marcus Mariota, Case Keenum) who would be excellent fits for Kingsbury’s offensive system. Recently-acquired Chris Streveler, an athletic signal-caller from the Canadian Football League, could also be in line to assume Hundley’s second-string role with the team.
After four extremely disappointing years with Arizona, it’s almost a certainty that cornerback Brandon Williams will finally be handed his walking papers. It was clear from the beginning of his career that the former college running back was not cut out to be an NFL cover guy. Williams is the last remaining piece from Keim’s 2016 draft class, a group that is arguably the worst batch of picks in Cards history.
In a few short weeks, the shaping of the Cardinals 2020 roster will begin to catch fire. Various free agents will be flocking to the nest, while others will be leaving it. Arizona’s braintrust obviously has a plan that the rest of us will become aware of in due time.