No, the Arizona Cardinals aren’t tanking in wake of recent trades

The Arizona Cardinals made a trio of trades yesterday, and it’s hard to make sense of any of them. But it still doesn’t imply they are tanking. Yet, anyway…
Jul 27, 2023; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals general manager Monti Ossenfort watches practice
Jul 27, 2023; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals general manager Monti Ossenfort watches practice / Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY

The Arizona Cardinals pulled off three trades yesterday, acquiring a seventh rounder for Isaiah Simmons to start things off. This may have come as a shocker to some, but as noted in a previous article, there are a multitude of reasons general manager Monti Ossenfort wanted to get rid of Simmons. 

Then Josh Jones and a seventh rounder went for a fifth round pick to the Houston Texans, before Ossenfort sent another fifth rounder to the Cleveland Browns for Josh Dobbs and a seventh. In short, the trades were puzzling, even if I at least tried to find reason in each of them. 

Of course, that infamous word known as ‘tank’ has once again entered the Cardinals lexicon, but in all honesty, if you thought that these aforementioned trades imply a tank, it’s not entirely true. The Cards traded two players, both in the final year of their respective contracts, and one of whom they rightfully lost complete patience with - Simmons. 

Regarding Jones, he showed us multiple times that he can play tackle and guard, but should probably just stick to tackle. That said, he wasn’t beating out Paris Johnson or D.J. Humphries anytime soon, and it wouldn’t surprise me if we eventually find out he privately asked for a trade. Jones has the caliber to be a starting tackle in the league, and it wasn’t happening in the desert.

Arizona Cardinals aren’t tanking, so let’s stop talking about it

If the Cards were tanking, then chances are, they would still have Isaiah Simmons on the roster, as he would have taken Budda Baker’s spot in the lineup. Zaven Collins wouldn’t be playing EDGE, as he would have likely gone somewhere else too, and you may even say the same for Marquise Brown, assuming someone liked him enough to sign the 26-year-old to an extension. 

So unless we see another trio of trades happening today involving those three players, there is no tanking going on. Even if news breaks that Kyler Murray will miss the entire season because of his knee still wouldn’t convince me, because the Cards have a promising one-two duo in James Conner and Keaontay Ingram in the backfield capable of carrying the offense.

They have incredible route runners at receiver, plus a pair of tight ends (assuming Zach Ertz isn’t traded next) who can catch and block. Once again, there is too much talent on this Arizona Cardinals team to believe they are tanking. 

Could they finish with an awful record and land the first pick? Absolutely. But if we are talking about a deliberate tank, it’s way too farfetched unless Ossenfort moves star, or potentially star players. Yes, I did mention the team could be looking to tank in wake of the Simmons trade in the piece involving him, but remember, I also stated it was the "least-likeliest scenario," and it will take a lot for them to change my mind.