Three players the Arizona Cardinals must retain in free agency
I really debated about adding Peterson, given the fact he’s lost a step and his fan-favorite status in the desert is the primary reason fans want to see him return. No fault there. But the NFL is a business and if a player can no longer perform, they need to move on.
But despite Peterson’s decline, he can also become a versatile puzzle piece in the defensive backfield. His days as a legit number one corner are over and both he and the Cardinals must realize that. But as with so many corners whose skills at the position diminish, he can not only provide depth but move into a more versatile role. Perhaps rotating in at safety.
One reason to keep Peterson around is because of his availability. He’s only missed six career games, per Pro Football Reference. He missed six games in 2019 because of a suspension. But other than that, he’s never missed because of injury.
That says a lot considering the fact he’ll be starting his 11th season in the desert if the Cardinals hold onto him either on a year-to-year basis, or lock him up for what may be the remainder of his career.
It will come down to money. And if another team believes Peterson is still a number one corner, they may pay him like one and he’ll go elsewhere. But if the Cardinals can still eek out the best deal to keep Peterson around, they need to.