The Arizona Cardinals agreed to a trade for receiver DeAndre Hopkins on Monday morning
The tampering period hadn’t even really started and the Arizona Cardinals fleeced the Houston Texans in what may go down as the best trade in general manager Steve Keim’s tenure in Arizona. So how does getting receiver DeAndre Hopkins help the Cardinals?
First of all the trade itself allowed the Cardinals to get rid of running back David Johnson‘s salary. The Texans have agreed to pay all of his salary. They basically ended up even in salary cap, which allows them to still go after top free agent targets.
Secondly, it will allow the Cardinals to free up options in the first round of the NFL Draft in April. The Cardinals gave up their 2020 second round pick in addition to their fourth rounder in 2021.
Now that they have parted ways with their 2020 second round pick, they almost certainly have to pass on drafting a receiver in the first round. Many had wanted or believed the Cardinals were going to try and get Oklahoma receiver CeeDee Lamb.
This opens up the possibility of the Cardinals drafting a player on defense or if they chose not to go that way early on, possibly an offensive linemen. Either option would be better than a receiver.
As for the Cardinals offense itself, it likely opens up future Hall of Fame receiver Larry Fitzgerald his chances to fend off some double teams. This could also possibly make the decision for Fitz to stick around at least 2 more years instead of just 2020.
With Hopkins, Fitz, and Christian Kirk as the top three receivers, the Cardinals immediately vault to the top receiving core in the NFL. Then don’t forget they have up and coming receivers Keesean Johnson, Andy Isabella, and Hakeem Butler behind them.
Having another top receiver also likely opens up the running game more for the Cardinals. The running back situation is fluid right now since David Johnson is gone and in an uncertain status with Kenyan Drake.
This offense will be dangerous in 2020 and beyond. This will allow the Cardinals to go out and spend money on the defense which will definitely need to be shored up if they want to win in 2020, now matter how good the offense looks on paper.