Major network tabs Sam Bradford as Arizona Cardinals worst free agent signing since 2018

Chicago Bears v Arizona Cardinals
Chicago Bears v Arizona Cardinals / Jennifer Stewart/GettyImages

The Arizona Cardinals have had plenty of free agent flops over the past five seasons, but few compare to Sam Bradford’s ill-fated tenure.

If there was ever a season in recent memory worse than what the Arizona Cardinals went through in 2022, it was 2018. That year, the Redbirds finished 3-13, and looked like a franchise with absolutely zero direction. 

Per SpoTrac, the Cards signed Sam Bradford to a one-year, $20 million contract with $15 million guaranteed. Of course, the team drafted Josh Rosen in April of that year, so Bradford was only in town to run things while the rookie acclimated themselves to the NFL. 

Unfortunately for Bradford, his career with the Cardinals lasted three games. He posted 400 passing yards, a 62.5% completion percentage, threw for two touchdowns, four interceptions, and had a passer rating of 62.5, a career low. 

Sam Bradford was the Arizona Cardinals worst free agent signing since 2018

Following the porous start, the Cards had seen enough, leaving for Rosen to take the reins. Unfortunately, the rookie looked just as overmatched as Bradford, so perhaps the duo were just the respective products of a bad situation. 

Whatever the case, the Cards cut ties with Bradford in November of that year and he never played in the NFL again. Meanwhile, Rosen flamed out after one season with the Cardinals, before they traded him to the Miami Dolphins. 

Since then, Rosen spent time on another five NFL rosters and practice squads, and he will likely remain an NFL journeyman. So this just adds to the possibility that Bradford and Rosen were thrown into a poor situation and given zero chance to succeed. 

The only upside in all of this? It paved the way for Kyler Murray. And while Murray regressed unlike any other young quarterback in 2022, at least his play never sunk to the level that we saw from Bradford and Rosen. 

Related. 3 ultra-bold predictions for Arizona Cardinals free agency in 2023. dark

Source: NFL free agency: Best, worst signings for every team since 2018 by NFL Nation with contributions from Josh Weinfuss, 

(Statistics provided by Pro-Football-Reference)