4 contract decisions that will pay off for the Arizona Cardinals in 2023

  • Budda Baker will be a star on defense
  • The Cardinals did the right thing with J.J. Watt's contract
  • It needed to be done with DeAndre Hopkins
Arizona Cardinals
Arizona Cardinals / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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Marquise "Hollywood" Brown

Current status: 4 year, $11,787,340 contract with the Baltimore Ravens - 5th year option picked up

After choosing to move on from DeAndre Hopkins per the receiver's request, Marquise Brown will now be the leading pass catcher for Kyler Murray for at least the 2023 season.

A memorable 2021 season with the Ravens made Brown a household name, totaling 91 receptions for 1,008 yards and six touchdowns. It was his most productive season to date, as far as yards go, but the Ravens still chose to trade the former first-round draft pick to the Cardinals during the spring of 2022.

It was perfect timing for both the Cardinals and Brown, as Hopkins would be suspended for the first six games of the season due to a PED violation. This created a massive opportunity for the young receiver to become the go-to receiver on the team in the veteran's absence.

Unfortunately, Arizona's season didn't go too smoothly, ending with a 4-13 record and Murray going down with a torn ACL in Week 14. However, Brown made the most of his chances, even after Hopkins returned, totaling 67 receptions for 709 yards and three touchdowns.

Now heading into a contract season, it would be wise for the Cardinals to dabble in re-signing Brown, especially as he will be the most seasoned receiver on their team this upcoming season.

As they work through a rebuild, retaining productive players is imperative, and it is challenging to find those types of players in free agency, making it much wiser to keep those you have.

However, it will all have to come at the right price. Despite being a first-round draft pick a few years ago, Brown hasn't necessarily performed like one during his NFL career. If the Cardinals can re-sign him at a reasonable price and potentially move him to be a WR2 (unless, for some reason, he has a mind-blowing performance in 2023), then they'd be getting the most bang for their buck with him.