The Arizona Cardinals are in a predicament regarding their cap space.
With the talks surrounding Kyler Murray’s contract extension continuing, the future of the other players in Arizona is starting to get a little cloudy. Especially with the Cardinals’ newest wide receiver, Marquise Brown.
The NFL has seen a wide receiver change unlike ever before, and most (if not all) of those wide receivers who found new homes got paid handsomely. But can the Arizona Cardinals really afford to do that with Brown?
There were reports that Murray could get close to a Derek Carr-like amount of money. That wouldn’t be the worst-case scenario as it’s not the gaudiest quarterback contract out there (a.k.a. Deshaun Watson).
But what would Murray’s contract do to the 2023 cap space, which currently sits around 34 million per OverTheCap?
Kyler Murray deserves to get paid, but it must be team-friendly
Murray’s extension could take a massive chunk out of the next few years regarding the salary cap. Brown’s contract is set to expire in 2024, along with DeAndre Hopkins. How are the Cardinals going to pay two big-name wide receivers on top of Murray’s first significant contract extension?
We’ll see if Brown produces, but a first-round draft pick for a guy that only had a handful of more yards than Christian Kirk makes him the more preferable one to not sign.
Keeping Hopkins should be a priority, and utilizing more cap-friendly options to fill in the depth chart behind him is the better way to go. But, on top of that, what is J.J. Watt going to demand down the road- especially if he returns to his prime?
Steve Keim may have created a situation that is going to force the Cardinals to choose between a competitive team and a competitive quarterback. It’s a long ways away, but it needs to be in the back of Cardinals fans’ heads.