Arizona Cardinals best moves of the 2023 offseason
By Sion Fawkes
Although they weren’t active in free agency, the Arizona Cardinals had one of the better offseasons in 2023 than they’ve had in a long time.
Earlier in the year, we covered the best and worst moves for the Arizona Cardinals during the offseason’s early stages. And while the Cards could always add to their roster during the second wave of free agency, the offseason, for the most part, is complete.
So of all the moves general manager Monti Ossenfort made, which ones were the best? Keep reading to discover more.
Best moves of the Arizona Cardinals 2023 offseason
1 - Acquiring draft capital
The Arizona Cardinals currently have 10 picks for 2024, and six of those 10 selections could easily wind up as top 100 picks. When it comes to building a team in any sport, the tried and true method is through the draft, THEN sign free agents when your draft picks have built the necessary foundation.
Ossenfort understood that, and he pulled off several spectacular trades to put the Arizona Cardinals in an advantageous position next season. At this point, he just needs to scout and ultimately select the right prospects.
2 - Refusing to overspend in free agency
If Steve Keim were still in control, I’d have cringed, given the amount of money the Cards had in cap space coupled with what we saw was a weaker roster. Chances are, Keim would have signed a few players in either their late 20s or early 30s, which could have given the Cards hope for a successful year or two. But then what?
Ossenfort, as touched on earlier, realized free agency won’t get you far in the way of winning championships. At least not with a roster that just finished 4-13 that has a new coaching staff at the helm.
So really, why even spend money on guys who are about to exit their prime in a season or two? By resisting the urge to spend money on top-tier talent in free agency, Ossenfort further increased the Cardinals odds of success long-term, assuming he gets it right with the draft.
3 - Refusing to create a quarterback controversy
You got a new coach, a new general manager, and a polarizing quarterback with a large contract. If this doesn’t have disaster written all over it, I don’t know what does. But Ossenfort went out, re-signed David Blough and brought in Jeff Driskel, hardly legitimate threats to take over the starting job at quarterback, telling me he handled it better than most first-time general managers would have.
While he drafted Clayton Tune in the fifth round, the rookie, at this point, anyway, isn’t going to find himself playing alongside the projected starters any time soon. Now, if Tune ends up having a good camp and preseason, that could change. But as it stands, the addition of Tune doesn’t necessarily scream quarterback controversy at the moment.