Creation of salary-cap space indicates Arizona Cardinals want to contend

Philadelphia Eagles v Arizona Cardinals
Philadelphia Eagles v Arizona Cardinals / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

The Arizona Cardinals are creating room under the salary cap that could allow them to assemble a playoff-caliber roster in 2023.

There's a general opinion circulating that the Arizona Cardinals are going to struggle to compete next season. New head coach Jonathan Gannon's group is supposedly in "rebuilding" mode, but the recent actions of the club's front office would indicate otherwise.

This past Friday, Cards general manager Monti Ossenfort raised a few eyebrows when he restructured the contract of left tackle D.J. Humphries. The move was made for the sole purpose of creating $5.3 million in salary-cap space for a squad that many believe has no shot of making the postseason. Is it possible that Arizona's management crew disagrees with that assessment?

Ossenfort apparently believes that he can put together a playoff-caliber roster for the Cardinals this offseason. In addition to the money that was freed up with the restructuring of Humphries' deal, the Redbirds gained even more cap room by releasing Markus Golden. Cutting ties with the veteran edge-rusher allowed Ossenfort to add another $3 million to the organization's salary-cap allotment.

The Cards actually got the ball rolling last Wednesday when they ended their association with wide receiver Robbie Anderson. The release of the disappointing pass-catcher gave Ossenfort and company a cool $12 million to spend elsewhere.

Arizona Cardinals are armed with an impressive amount of salary-cap space this offseason

According to, Arizona now has almost $37 million to use on reinforcing the roster. It's a growing figure that is the fifth-highest in the NFL at the present time. That's certainly enough cash to get the team back on track, but convincing free agents to sign with a squad that went 4-13 last fall could be quite challenging.

For the Cardinals to have any chance of getting into the playoffs this year, Ossenfort will have to acquire a capable quarterback. The idea would be to find a passer who can basically keep the ship afloat until starter Kyler Murray can return from his knee injury. Free-agent possibilities include Marcus Mariota, Carson Wentz, Baker Mayfield and Gardner Minshew.

Ossenfort is heading into free agency with an ample amount of spending money. If the new GM can make some savvy acquisitions, the postseason dream could become a reality. One thing's for sure, the Cards definitely don't plan on being a punching bag for the rest of the league in 2023.

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