Left tackle market should be robust

Posted by Darren Urban on March 3, 2014 – 2:49 pm

Today was the deadline for teams to use the franchise tag. There is still a week before free agency officially begins — although teams and free-agents-to-be can start talking Saturday — and there is still time for any of these players who are set to become free to still sign extensions and avoid hitting the market. That said, the tag was a possibility for a handful of prospective left tackle free agents, and all of them ended up dodging that tag Monday.

That means the left tackle market, barring a late extension, will include Kansas City’s Branden Albert, Baltimore’s Eugene Monroe, St. Louis’ Rodger Saffold, Oakland’s Jared Veldheer and Cincinnati’s Anthony Collins. (There are reports out of Oakland that think Veldheer’s non-tagging means he’s close to a deal, but if that is true, why not tag him just in case?) ranked the tackles on the market in this order: Monroe, Albert, Veldheer, Collins, Saffold. The money to sign these guys will not be insignificant, and the need remains high for such players across the league. But if the Cardinals are looking to grab a vet to plug in, there not only will be options but the ability to have a solid backup choice. That can’t be a bad thing.


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Posted in Blog | 33 Comments »

33 Responses to “Left tackle market should be robust”

  1. By azjam on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    This is good news for the Cards. They will have competition from other teams for sure but its good to have several options.

  2. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    What I find interesting is that last year, in the draft, The Jags took Joeckel and sent Monroe to Ravens, Fisher was taken by Chiefs and now Albert is available and Valdheer could be available after the raiders drafted Menelik Watson.

    Now the raiders should and probably will bring back Valdheer to have bookend tackles,
    But think about this; Every team is always looking for guys to protect their QB and these three teams have guys who are pretty good. But instead of keeping them, they draft and replace them.

    I know money plays a big part, but it seems odd to me.

  3. By D on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Oakland must be close to a deal with Valdheer because they have tons of cap space…Watch out for MIA, they have a lot of cap space and need almost an entire Oline (among many holes to fill on defense). They will go hard after Albert.

    Saffold and Albert do have injury histories, I don’t see Keim give a huge deal for a player like that…
    Rams don’t have alot of cap space but they do want Saffold back….

  4. By Darrel on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    I think veldheer makes the most sense long, , Athletic has good feet and hand place ment and he’s younger than all the guys listed crossing my fingers for jared veldheer ill be happy just to get one though hope the cards don’t over pay too much

  5. By lou pickerson on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    They should not offer too much.if need be,let the other teams sign these guys and eliminate the competition for the top tackles of the draft.

  6. By Dre on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Would love to see Eugene Monroe, Brandon Albert or Anthony Collins inked in for Arizona Cardinals starting LT. Great News, Darren…Thanks!!!


    With the NFL salary cap set at 133 million for 2014, near ten million more then 2013, do you thinking cutting Daryn College would be a good decision? It seems counter productive at this point since we are trying to improve our entire o-line.

  7. By Darren Urban on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Dre —

    RE: Colledge

    I think teams are averse to paying a guard $4.8 million in salary. Yes, it might hurt a bit in the short term and there will be dead money, but there would be cap savings with such a move. We’ll have to see how it plays out.

  8. By Todd Brown on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    I’d prefer Monroe partly because he’s 26 and Albert is 29. But Monroe will probably be the most expensive FA this season.

    Whomever we pick, I hope we get one of the lineman that’s 26 and not 29. It would be nice to have this position solidified for the next 3-4 years with the option for a new contract when the player is then 30 and not 33. I’m just glad our GM is a former offensive lineman!

  9. By joe holst on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    They went 7-2 With Bradley Sowell protecting the blind side. He deserves to build on last years success. The Cards could use that money in the secondary instead, Jarius Bryd.

  10. By Islandofmisfitcards on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Hi Darren,

    I am a fan who has lived my whole life in Tucson, AZ. I am wondering if the Cardinals have ever considered or could consider moving one pre-season game down to the University of Arizona ?

  11. By Darren Urban on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Island –

    RE: Tucson

    I don’t see them taking a game out of UoP stadium.

  12. By Andy Kw on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Unless Pro Bowl WR Larry Fitzgerald can go back to his 2011 form in the 2014 NFL season, I think this should be his last year as an Arizona Cardinal. I love the contribution his has had on this team. He works hard, he is willing to give up money for the team’s success, he donates to the people in need, and he cares for others. He is a future Hall of Famer and will be inducted in the Arizona Cardinals’ Ring of Honor when he retires but he has regressed too much in the last two seasons. He is an elite player I have admired since I first watched Cardinals football and he is a great person on and off the field. Maybe in year 2 of Arians system, he will flash a little more. But if he doesn’t, this is the end of the road for him with the big Cap Hit in the 2015 season. Please, give us that over 1000yd season and double digit touchdowns. You need to be that Go To receive again and this season can show that.

  13. By Coach K on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    If we can sign an offensive tackle in free agency, this is how I see things falling in the draft:

    Rd.1- Aaron Donald, DT
    Rd.2- Marcus Smith, OLB
    Rd.3- Deone Bucannon, SS
    Rd.4- Bruce Ellington, WR
    Rd.5- James Hurst, OT
    Rd.6- Joe Don Duncan, TE

    If someone grabs Bucannon before pick #84, the other option is Loston from LSU. This would be a great group and fill many need positions.

  14. By Dr. G. on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Good news on the supply-and-demand front when considering the lottery these active OT’s ((Albert, etc.)) hope to win…and in reality, probably will. …Not to panic – the cost will go down as the patient teams will get the best Banger for the buck. I counted some 50 – OT’s that are listed in the draft – Keim will be able to pluck one in the 2nd or 3rd round that will be very good to keep Palmer upright and learn some run blocking schemes.

    I’m thinking that Keim will make sense of upgrading this position by drafting and keeping the cost in mind. OT is not like learning quantum physics; a man with good basic instincts will be ready to go after camp and a few preseason games. And for the money spent on a FA OT, Keim could have a giant TE to add to our arsenal, all for perhaps less $$$$… Elementary, my Dear Watsons…. We’ll see…..G’day…

  15. By Big Ken on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Things are going to get interesting between now and March 11, 4:00PM.

  16. By ben1 on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    what about the cards signing the guy from and blind side! itll be the start to the blind side part 2, signs with the cards and finds a hall of fame form. another hollywood ending for that cat

  17. By Dr. G. on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    With mine and others’ crazy hours, some of us post at odd hours – Thank you, Darren, for monitoring at variable hours of days, and to bring forth some very pertinent topics for discussion. We’re all figuratively on the edge awaiting things to move along with FA and this draft… I know I speak for the others to keep this little exchange ongoing…. Kudos…

    Please comment sometime on the depth of Michael Bidwill’s input/involvement…

  18. By jakeplummersghost on Mar 3, 2014 | Reply

    Fitz has not regressed significantly. he was catching passes on a historically awful offense in 2012. He played almost all of 2013 with one or BOTH injured hammies while learning a new offense and positions. I’d say that MIGHT have something to do with it…

    years of elite production, and then your coach and gm screw up so that you spend a season catching passes from three QBs that don’t even belong in the league (kolb, lindley, skelton), and then you tweak your hammy in practice one day the next year and it lingers but you tough it out while still leading your team in recs and tds and people still won’t give you a break. sheesh.

  19. By ored on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    three big needs…o-line…safety to cover TEs…speed reciever/kick returner,fixing the o-line would be the most beneficial,improving ground game,TE play,and QB play,so stands to reason we’ll either pay more or draft higher there.but in the end if needs be we can rely on sowell improving this off season and just give him more TE help,that leaves lots of options to make the defense even better.

  20. By Jack on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    Better to sign a veteran LT since Cooper is having a rookie redo and coming off major injury. Not sure about Winston/College… Perhaps Massie Potter are ready to claim a starting spot… perhaps Sowell could go over to right side? A lot of moving parts here and we just don’t know all of the details unfortunately.

  21. By John The Draft Guy on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    Could this be the start of the niners cap problems?

    Kaepernick is wanting 18 million a year. They right now have around 10 million in cap space and starting CB Tarrel Brown and starting safety Donte Whitner are free agents.

    There is a chance that the niners cut their other cb Carlos Rodgers to make some room.

    Next year, Iupati and Aldon Smith become free agents and will demand large paychecks.

    As I have been saying, as those QBs come up as FAs, the cap will become a issue for the niners and next year, you will see Russel Wilson become a 100 million dollar guy.

    The draft becomes so important for the niners to land some guys in the secondary. It is time for the cards to make their move.

  22. By Andy Kw on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    We can all agree that SS Deone Bucannon (Washington St.) should be drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the 2nd or 3rd Round. To be safe, we should draft him in the 2nd Round since he is one of the best Strong Safeties in the Draft.
    But who are we going to draft in the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, & 6th Round?

  23. By georgiebird on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    The LT situation is totally overblown. CP is a stationary target and he will be harassed big time in 2014 now that the Cardinals are on everbody’s radar.
    One word of advice to SK- DON’T get an LT (in the draft or FA) who has blocked for a mobile QB. Mobile QBs make LTs look good by dissuading defenses from rushing the passer and mobile QBs can cover for a bad LT play..
    Instead, find an LT who has been able to keep a stationary QB upright- fat chance!

  24. By VaCardsFan on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    Georgie —

    You talk as if Carson Palmer is the only quarterback in the league that likes to stay in the pocket or that a qb can not be successful doing such a thing. Hell I think all the left tackles mentioned in the article are from teams with a non mobile quarterback, so please tell me why this only seems to be some malign problem that the Cardinals only have?

  25. By Big Ken on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    JTDG, Niners and cap problems, as a bonus the funny coach stories. Sounds like mutiny! I’m glad our coach(s) is a total professional. Arians is a class act.

  26. By Dr. G. on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    JTDG – 9’ers? The Cap is becoming a secondary problem. There seems to be a covert mutiny looming for the coach. According to reasonable sources, the players are not thrilled. And Harbaugh doesn’t respect the neophyte ownership.

    AKw – Don’t think we have a 6th pick this year… Raiders have it? We need a stallion TE, and a QB of the near future so we don’t have Kap/Wilson $$$$ problems in the immediacy.

    gbird – Stationary QB? You might want to watch the guy in Denver… We need a starting OT and a backup for him…I like the draft for 1, and keep Sowell. You may like a good book on NFL basic strategies, formations and player responsibilities.

    BigKen – you beat me to it – – yep… but keep in mind – Arians is not a push over. He could teach Harbaugh something about respect for players however.

    G’day Cards Fans!

  27. By georgiebird on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    In your reply to Dre (re: Colledge)- it should be “averse” not “adverse”.
    Minor point – but just for future reference in your work. It’s because I like you …..

  28. By Darren Urban on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    Georgie —

    RE: averse

    Of course you do.


  29. By Eazy E on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    We better get one. I prefer Albert.

  30. By ored on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    target on our qb is nothing new,been that way since least the qb spot is improved for the time being,now just need to give him room/time to make something happen,we’ll get chances between FA and the draft.

  31. By warnerHOF on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    i agree jake. i dont respond on here usually because people including darren dont have a clue about football or the mentality of it.

  32. By clssylssy on Mar 4, 2014 | Reply

    Addendum to jakeplummersghost: Because of the Card’s weakness at TE, Fitz proved an invaluable asset at blocking and opening up lanes. sacrificing his personal stats for the run game and the greater good…sheesh!
    I wonder how many fans posting on this sight have ever turned down a merit increase for the good of their employer …and ended up getting kicked to the curb for their loyalty?

  33. By Louisville Card on Mar 5, 2014 | Reply


    I don’t understand why you and others for some reason think Fitz has taken a paycut? He restructured his contract to get paid all at once not take a pay cut…

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