One of the most important issues for the Arizona Cardinals is to figure out who to try and keep and who to let explore free agency.
After they hire a head coach and decide on what kind of schemes they want to implement offensively and defensively, the front office will have a better idea of who to retain.
Following Steve Keim’s resignation, the Arizona Cardinals hired Monti Ossenfort as their general manager. Formerly the Tennessee Titans director of player personnel, Ossenfort will have to decide what direction this franchise will take and that direction begins with free agency. Here is a list of players for the Cardinals to consider.
Byron Murphy Jr. is one player the Arizona Cardinals should re-signin
The Arizona Cardinals must prioritize signing Byron Murphy Jr. once the free agency signing period begins. He is undoubtedly their best cover corner and it would be a wise decision to secure one of their best players for the future. He can play zone coverage and can also play press coverage as he is often matched up with the opponent’s best receiver.
It will be important for the Cardinals to ensure his position on the roster is secure, especially knowing that they will have to face the likes of Cooper Kupp, DK Metcalf and Deebo Samuel twice a season. Murphy Jr.’s versatility sets him apart as he is capable of lining up on the outside as well as in the slot.
Therefore, he can matchup with whoever, no matter where they are lined up on the field. Murphy Jr. is one of the more underrated cornerbacks in the NFL, but has struggled with injuries which only limited him to nine games on the season.
This is a player who was mentored by Patrick Peterson when he first arrived in Arizona. And he has also had to cover the likes of Larry Fitzgerald, A.J. Green, and Deandre Hopkins during practices.
Murphy Jr. also is a good tackler with great hands and good concentration. The only concern about him is when he’s defending receivers on short routes but he could improve in that area with the right coaching.
He plays with aggression and attitude, and possesses the one attribute that every elite cornerback has to have: fearlessness. The Cardinals secondary underperformed this season as they had the third most completions allowed, allowed the highest completion percentage, allowed the ninth most passing yards, and is tied for the third most TD’s allowed through the air. Signing Murphy Jr. to a long term deal is imperative.