3 players the Arizona Cardinals gave up on way too soon

Los Angeles Rams v Arizona Cardinals
Los Angeles Rams v Arizona Cardinals / Christian Petersen/GettyImages

The Arizona Cardinals could have had even more talent on the roster had they not given up on the following three players so early in their respective careers.

The Arizona Cardinals seemed to run through draft picks like none other during the Steve Keim era. But if they held onto a few of them? 

Below, you will meet three players who could have altered the state of the franchise. One player listed will surprise you, while the other two were there for the keeping had the Cardinals simply done a better job of valuing their younger talent over aging veterans. 

3 players the Arizona Cardinals shouldn’t have given up on

1 - Josh Rosen, QB

I know I’ll take a lot of carnage for this, but how many times do you see a franchise give up on a quarterback after just one season? Especially a first round pick?

After two seasons? Of course! That’s normal. And while Rosen would have been terrible in 2019, the odds of the Arizona Cardinals landing either Joe Burrow or Justin Herbert for 2020 and beyond would have skyrocketed. 

Imagine Burrow or Herbert stepping in for the 2020 season and throwing to the likes of DeAndre Hopkins, Larry Fitzgerald in his swan song season, and Christian Kirk. Yeah, history may have played out differently had the Cardinals held onto Rosen and let him get even worse for another year.

2 - Haason Reddick, LB/EDGE

When the Arizona Cardinals declined Haason Reddick’s fifth-year option, the writing was on the wall. There was no way the much-maligned linebacker was going to return to the desert, even after posting 12.5 sacks in 2020.

Reddick has since become one of the best, if not the best, EDGE rushers in the NFL while the Cardinals are stuck with intriguing yet unproven talent in 2023. Yeah, Reddick’s presence would have easily upgraded the Cardinals defense in 2023.

3 - Chase Edmonds, RB

Following a lackluster rookie season, Chase Edmonds went on to enjoy three productive years as the Arizona Cardinals RB2. But instead of trying to convince Edmonds to stay, the Cards let him walk and sign with the Miami Dolphins, where he struggled before being traded to the Denver Broncos. 

As with Reddick, Edmonds would have filled a prominent role in the Cardinals backfield this season behind James Conner. And for a team looking to run the ball often this season, Edmonds would see more than his fair share of touches.


(Statistics provided by Pro-Football-Reference)