Will the Cardinals pursue __________?

Posted by Darren Urban on March 3, 2015 – 5:04 pm

It’s as regular as taxes being due in April — a player is released, especially this time of year, and within minutes (seconds, sometimes) someone on Twitter asks if the Cardinals will be interested in him. It does not seem to matter the circumstances upon which the player was released, or where he might be in his career, or even that he’d probably just be redundant on the Cardinals’ roster with a player they already have. The questions come anyway. There have been times — few, but they have happened — when a guy is reported to be released and when I look into it, my sources hadn’t even heard he was cut yet. (Because sometimes he hasn’t officially been yet and the agent is leaking info.)

Here’s the thing: If a player is released, there usually is a reason. And while it can be for strictly monetary reasons, often, there is usually a parallel that includes some variation that the team doesn’t think the player is worth the current contract anymore — and so he’s cut.

Once in a while, it’s mostly about the money. The Cardinals want to keep Darnell Dockett, but at a price they deem better than what he was going to make, and Dockett wanted to test the market. That makes a ton of sense from Dockett’s perspective. But almost all the other guys released thus far aren’t going back and never were wanted back. That doesn’t mean they can’t contribute to a new team, but no matter how glittery the name, the players at the peak of their careers aren’t just cut. They guys flooding the market now are older, their play is declining, injuries have taken their toll, or all of the above.

Plus, when free agency starts, there will be even more players from which to pick and choose. Some are worth a lot of dough, others are like the guys being cut — they aren’t worth what they might be asking for anymore.

Just something to keep in mind the next time you see that the _____ just released ______ and want to jump to “Will the Cardinals try and get him?”

Posted in Blog | 39 Comments »

39 Responses to “Will the Cardinals pursue __________?”

  1. By BigAL on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    Yeah Darren…
    Like Haloti Ngata?

  2. By Andy Kw on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    Let’s get CJ Spiller, Orlando Franklin, Trent Cole, James Casey, Samson Satele.

  3. By CreditCard on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    The devil you know vs. the devil you don’t know syndrome or the grass is always greener on the other side of the hill

  4. By cactus jeff on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    Number 1 FA = Mike Iupati G niners

    He eats DD for breakfast and I really like DD, but this guy is awesome. Put him at LG and BA has the offense he wants, play action all game long. Get another RB in the draft. Added bonus, losing Iupati would really hurt the niners.

  5. By georgiebird on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” – it can happen. But you are right, Darren, most of the time it is a pipe dream.
    The Cardinals are an 11-5 team. To get to 12-4 or even stay at 11-5 requires a lot of shrewd personnel decisions.
    Bad organizations like the Cardinals of yesteryear have made poor decisions with guys like Thomas Jones, Garrison Hearst and Ken Harvey among many others.
    So today, it may be time for a very good Cardinals’ organization to find a jewel or two being cut loose by today’s very poor organizations.

  6. By Skiptim on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    Darren, I’ve been reading your blogs and articles on here for years. You may even recognize my name. Truth be told, I’ve seen changes in you. Over the years, your patience and tolerance for perceived ignorance has been deteriorating. I hate to see you like this, honestly. You just need to understand that no matter what you say, no matter how it makes you feel, there will ALWAYS be people asking these questions. You are in the public eye (sort of), and you will always have a steady flow of traffic and repetition. Even if everyone got the message that us signing Suh, A.J. Hawk or even Derek Anderson is idiocy, there will at the very least be trolls trying to push your buttons.

    Just think about this. Try not to let it get to you. Embrace the trolls, the ignorant people, everyone. Think about how blessed you are to have these people talking seeking information from you… a person who gets to be a part of an NFL organization!

    Good luck, Darren.

  7. By CardinalChris on Mar 3, 2015 | Reply

    Cardinals free agent targets if I was in charge (still waiting for my callup Steve…):

    Jason Worilds – 27yrs set him free to rush the passer!!

    Frank Gore – wouldn’t it be nice to not have to tackle him

    Dan Williams – home grown

    Dwight Freeney – for situational pass rush

    Top Draft Targets:
    All possible Clemson Linebackers

    If Clemson linebackers not available, any Washington Defenders available in the draft.

    Dorial Green Beckham would look awesome in Cards Uniform, but he won’t be there at 24…

    Go Cards!

  8. By jeffy1951 on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    I admire the discipline of the Cardinal front office and the way they seem to not panic when things get tight. As much as there are stars ON the field there are some IN the office too. I wish the players AND management the very best in the coming season – they deserve it.

  9. By jeffgollin on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Somewhere in the Analytics Cave buried deep within Cardinals Hq. there has to lie a chart which places a dollar value range for each spot on our 53 man active roster and how much they feel a veteran player or rookie prospect is worth on the open market. Thin number might or might not dovetail with that player’s cap hit (depending on whether he’s thought to be undervalued, overvalued or “just right.” It’s from this chart (or something like it) where “buy”, “sell”, “keep” decisions are made. (This also probably has to do with why we’ve stockpiled the OL and DB roster positions with so many FA’s).

    (An edit from Darren: This.)

  10. By Cody Zarr on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    But… but… according to the Cardinals are going to sign every free agent that was released this year!

  11. By W on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    I read this one the bleacher report.. nota bad article..

  12. By D on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    AP aka All Day (when released), J. Blalock (G), J. Durant (LB) K. Ellis(NT)
    A. Brooks OLB (when released)
    T. Kelly, M. Leach

  13. By Patrick Hoog aka Don't Take Losses on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    If Cards could add Suh and Peterson…path to SB through strength, in run game and stopping it…Cardinals dream…no that there are many other ways to get there…

  14. By Bruce on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    I really want to see us get Mark Ingram, but you know who would be good? And cheaper. Knowshon Moreno. If he can stay healthy he was killer last year (when healty) He out ran Lamar Miller all season. Also, with Ellinton, i think that would save some wear and tear. But he does get injured alot, it might be worth the extra few bucks to lock up Ingram on a 2 or 4 year deal.

  15. By clssylssy on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    A priority when selecting players, be it from the draft or FA, should be medical history/hx of injuries as we all saw what can happen when you are riddled with injuries, and we lost a draft pick when not doing our homework on Ryan Swope. Watching the Superbowl, I was impressed at how extremely tough and durable the players on both the Patriots and Seahawks are and was hoping Steve Keim was taking note (also the other teams that made the playoffs aside from the Cardinals).
    This year’s schedule is going to be tough, as all of our opponents, except for maybe the Saints, are ground and pound teams and toughness and durability will determine who is left standing and what the odds for making the playoffs are.

  16. By Brad oneill on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    The speculation is the fun part for us fans we get to dream football is entertainment. Let us have our christmas eve even if in the morning all we have under the tree is emmit smith past his prime we at least got too lay awake all night dreaming about the possibility of him bowling over defenses and winning some close games for us. Not that we had many close games back then.

  17. By Iain on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Hi Darren,

    What are the rules concerning when teams are allowed to bring players in for visits and sign free agents? I was just wondering as I thought players would only be allowed to be interviewed/signed during the free agency period, but then you get Josh McCown signing with the Browns a week ago and DD visiting the 49ers.


  18. By Darren Urban on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Iain —

    RE: Free agency

    “Normal” free agents don’t have their 2014 contracts expire until next week, which is why they have to wait. But if a player is cut — McCown, Dockett, etc. — he is free to visit/sign immediately.

  19. By Andy Kw on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    -We should not consider Knowshon Moreno. He has a history of injuries. As for rumors of an Adrian Peterson trade, even if he ends up restructuring his contract to appeal to us more what exactly would we trade to the Vikings? We should not give up a 1st or 2nd Rd pick. This draft class is loaded with pass rushers and ILBs we need. If we’re trading a draft pick and a player for him, it has to be no more than a 3rd and we should opt to include Kevin Minter since they need an ILB. I’d be quite angry if we trade away Andre Ellington.

    -There are a few backs in FA we should consider: RB Steven Jackson (ATL), RB Roy Helu (WAS), RB CJ Spiller, RB Darren McFadden (OAK)

    -As for ILB, we cannot wait for Kevin Minter anymore. Since the Saints are opting to shop Curtis Lofton, hopefully he is released and we sign him to take Kevin Minter’s role. He is a good tackler and he is only turning 29. Whether Daryl Washington is reinstated or not, we should not be too reliant on him in case of another suspension. Through the draft we should draft ILB Stephone Anthony in the 2nd RD. Daryl Washington struggled a bit in his rookie season but he became one of the best ILBs in the NFL before his suspension. If we give Anthony the spot light like what the Ravens did with CJ Mosley, we would be out of these ILB needs.

    -As for Darnell Dockett, the offer the Cards offered him is 100% reasonable. His injury was taken into account and he is on the downside of his NFL career at age 34. $2.5M is a lot of money for one year anyways for a guy his age. He has the attitude and leadership we always liked. If he does opt to leave the team for more money, everybody has the right to say that he was all talk when Karlos Dansby left us. But with his age, I also think that Dockett wants to earn as much money as he can before he call it an NFL career. If he does have children, he might want to provide as much as he can to them. I don’t blame Dockett if he does leave since its a business but he has been with the Cards so long and we offered him a reasonable contract, so why not just stay here?

  20. By mal on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply


    Respectfully, I would like to point out to you that the way you are pronouncing the word ‘primer’ (with a long i sound) — that’s a base coat of paint.

    As you and Kyle break down the different free-agent positions, I believe that word is actually pronounced with a short i sound — rhyming with the word ‘dimmer’.

    (dont wanna be a smart-ass, just keep you from looking foolish in public)

  21. By Darren Urban on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Mal —

    RE: Primer

    Well, I guess I learned something today. Better late than never.

  22. By D on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    If I were S. Keim, I would give a 6 or 7th round draft pick for ILB M. Wilhoite, problem is doubtful SF would trade him to the Cards. Maybe he is a possible cap casualty.

  23. By georgiebird on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Don’t give up so quickly with Mal. He’s right that paint related is the long “i”. But with the educational stuff- long “i” or short “i” is ok. Educational formats using primer have their basis in the word “primary”- long “i”.
    So hang in there Darren, it’s a debatable point.

  24. By Darren Urban on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Georgie —

    RE: Primer

    The question is: Will I be so paranoid as to avoid using the word altogether?

  25. By BigAL on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Andy Kw
    Honestly Andy I don’t quite get you??? Sometimes I love yer ideas…& sometimes I scratch my head? Like this post…regarding FA RB’s…you state that we should not pursue Knoshow, & I’m pretty sure I’ve read you a few times now, desire we go after, RB Steven Jackson (ATL), RB Roy Helu (WAS), RB CJ Spiller, RB Darren McFadden (OAK)…
    OK, yes, I think just about everyone on here would love to see us get an inside pounder like S.Jackson was 6 or so years ago…he’ll be 32 in July…& has a ton of mileage on those tires…Might as well go after Frank Gore then at least that would
    affect our division opponent & we wouldn’t have to tackle him. Roy Helu really? The only season he ever toted over 100 carries was in 2011 when our former guy T. Hightower went down. And wouldn’t Shane Vereen be a similar but better style??? And here’s the 2 I really don’t get? C,J,Spiller had one good season 2012, & has been plagued w/injuries his entire career! And when rarely healthy is the same size & stature, same game as Andre Ellington…And McFadden, has he ever played anything close to a full season?

    I do agree w/you on K. Minter one dimensional…& I do like ILB Stephone Anthony however, I doubt he’s there at around #56. This draft is deep in D-linemen I think that’s a big part of the Dockett situation…So, what/how would you feel about RB’s Todd Gurley or Melvin Gordon in Rd 1 & ILB Stephone Anthony in 2nd Rd?

    I agree on Doc…just hope he comes back for a year or two I would not bet against

    Would love to have AP but the cost will be too much…Somebody else mentioned
    AP & NDSuh nice dream… Suh would put us over the CAP by himself…

  26. By NJAzCardsFan on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    A few thoughts regarding Dockett….

    He is not fully healed yet; Could he pass a physical? Or will he end up like Sam Bradford did- re-injuring the knee again?

    It appears he thinks he is worth more than the Cards offered him.
    Why not make the team that released you you sweat, by going to the other teams
    in the NFC West?

    HIs age is somewhat of a detriment…. maybe he gets another offere from someone else, maybe not.

    The Cards survived the season without him, they can do it again.

    Personally, I ‘d like to see him back but I think the $;s would be better spent on Dan Williams.

  27. By Andy Kw on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    Glad to know there are Cards fans that read my responses. I just like the idea of getting Steven Jackson. The in the line runner is what the Cards need. I like Spiller as an option because his speed and physicality is much better than Ellington’s. He has had injuries but he can produce. Helu I like because he is solid on all aspects of the running game. As for McFadden I put him in there because other people have mentioned him.
    As for Melvin Gordon/Todd Gurley, I’d much prefer Gordon because he is not the injured RB but I’d prefer this team focus on OLB in round 1. There is a 50/50 chance Bud Dupree falls to us at 24 but there is a 99.9% chance Eli Harold is available at 24. Both are fast and are upgrades over any of the OLBs we have. We lost to mobile QBs because our team was never able to chase them down or stop them from running. That is a more serious concern since we play against SEA and SF. As for Stephone Anthony, did anyone think Daryl Washington would become a good LB except the Cardinals? Guys like Kendricks, McKinney, Dawson, & Perryman will most likely be drafted ahead of Anthony because of their popularity. I think the chances of him falling to us in the 2nd is pretty good.
    As for Peterson, he will be too expensive. Wouldn’t trade a high draft pick for him.

  28. By georgiebird on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    If you are getting hung up with the word “primer” (because of Mal), here’s a suggestion. Instead, use the word “prolegomenon” -it means about the same as primer. This could be a big break through for you- maybe a patent or trademark.
    Give it a shot, you can’t go back to primer-Mal will be listening.

  29. By Pete Dowdle on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply

    What else is there to do but to speculate and prognosticate at this point in time of the year, when the NFL is in that space between the Scouting Combine and the start of Free Agency? In other words, there’s nothing else to do. The thing is, this particular point in time of the year is something special, if only because it offers some team somewhere some measure of some chance to land something special. Some team is going to land, say, Andre Johnson, and he may or may not be a difference-maker for that team during the up-coming season. And even Darnell Dockett may prove to be a gem for either the Card’s (at a lower price) or another team within this brief window of time between teams making room to bring in new talent and the start of Free Agency. It’s not the most exciting time of the year, but it is what it is–it’s all we have right now, until something else comes along. And, let’s face it, it just gets better and better from here on out….

  30. By Chuck 1 on Mar 4, 2015 | Reply


    You were VERY tactful with Mai and Georgie, unlike what Skiptim accused you of being.

    Well done.

  31. By Big Ken on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    Dockett has hit the wall. Lets move on.

  32. By BigAL on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    What is the 3 year veteran minimum salary? Isn’t it something like 895K?

  33. By Darren Urban on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    BigAl —

    RE: Salary minimum

    In 2015, the minimum salary for a player who already has played two years and is in his third is $585,000. If you are in your fourth year, it’s $660,000.

  34. By BigAL on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    Wow, I’m surprised, I honestly thought the last CBA made it significantly higher, while lowering what top 1st Rnd draft picks ieSam Bradford got…So then what is a rookie minimum?

  35. By Darren Urban on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    Big Al —

    RE: Rookie minimum

    $435,000 this season.

  36. By BigAL on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    Thanks Darren!
    Guess Doc is a 49er, makes sense as I heard Justin Smith retired…someone has to protect Aldon Smith…

  37. By Black1137 on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    An obvious approach to FA when we don’t have a ton of money to spend.

  38. By Black1137 on Mar 5, 2015 | Reply

    If you think about it it’s easy.

    We need a pass rusher and a RB to share rushing attempts with Ellington. Also we need depth on the o line.

    Our skill positions are set as we all know now with our second and third stringers can play due to last years injuries. Come on fellas

  39. By brinnc on Mar 7, 2015 | Reply

    Have to disagree with you on the RB’s issue, I think we are far better off goingvthe draft route, cheaper that way, all are younger obviously, and all the backs you mention ar either done, or always injured, or has never proven they can carry the rock for a full season, as for Spiller, he is a Clone of Ellington, only faster, though he would fill the special teams KR/PR, but that would be the only role and he is going to want more money than Cardinals will pay. Jackson just needs to retire, now if it were 5-6 years ago, then by all means, sign him up!
    Im a huge proponent of trading out of the 1st and picking up an additional 2nd withe either a 3rd or 4th round pick with it. As far as drafting a RB, for what it’s worth my preference is Johnson/Northern Iowa, Gurley/Georgia, Cobb/Minnesota (Gordon/Wisconsin would be #3 behind Gurley but Im pretty sure he is gone in the 1st round, which even if we dont trade out of 1st round (again, fingers crossed we do) In my humble opinion Gordon will be off the board prior to pick #24. I’m happy as a pig in poop that free agency and the draft are screaming toward us, it gives all us Cardinal fanatics a chance to debate the coming and goings of our beloved Cardinals!!

    As far as your ILB draft preference, forgive my ignorance, I must study up on him, I just dont get the opportunity to watch west coast college football, and dont read or follow it much at all, ILB’s are a tricky animal, not a lot of depth again this year, which just increases the margin for error, I like the idea of drafting one as well as signing a proven veteran ILB to shore up one of our biggest ? marks.
    As far as AP, I couldn’t agree more with you on that subject.

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