Palmer: “Your body starts telling you ‘no'”

Posted by Darren Urban on February 10, 2017 – 10:53 am

Carson Palmer is back for the 2017 season, releasing a statement about it Thursday. Friday, Palmer called into the “Rich Eisen Show” to talk a little bit about his decision to return, with little surprise — he’s an older guy, and he needed to make sure his body would hold up. He feels it will.

“I love playing the game, love everything about it, but at some point, your body tells you when to stop and (when) the season ended, I just went into Steve Keim and Bruce Arians and asked them if I could take a month and make sure my body would get back to 100 percent,” said Palmer, who will turn 38 in December. “I took the month, my body has recovered well, feel great, feel ready to start getting ready in the offseason again. It was never about anything other than my body. My mind, my passion, all the things it takes to play this game, I still have. The desire to study, the desire to train, the desire to get ready for games.

“You start getting old like me, you start getting grey hair, your body starts telling you no. At some point it will, but I am excited I have responded, my body responded, and I get to keep playing.”

(There seems to be this perception Palmer is fragile, but he hasn’t been in Arizona. Yes, he missed 10 games in 2014, most of which because he tore his ACL. Otherwise, in Palmer’s other three Cardinals seasons, Palmer has played in 47 of 48 games, missing only one in 2016 because of a concussion.)

Palmer wasn’t talking about beyond 2017, one way or the other — “At this point in my career, it’s a one-year-at-a-time-type of deal,” he said, not closing the door on playing in 2018 but obviously waiting for his body’s input when we get to that point as well. He did note that, starting around age 34 or 35, it takes longer to recover each week.

“The older you get, the later on in the week you start feeling better,” Palmer said. “Sometimes it takes up until Thursday, Friday to recover from the previous Sunday be ready to play the next Sunday.”

It makes a lot of sense that Palmer stopped practicing on Wednesdays this past season. That certainly should continue this year (Larry Fitzgerald also figures to have Wednesday rest days again too.)

But Palmer returns. He joked about tendinitis in left hand from changing the diapers of his infant at home the past month — another reason to think about football again. “The offseason is pretty short but retirement is really long,” Palmer said.


Posted in Blog | 55 Comments »

55 Responses to “Palmer: “Your body starts telling you ‘no'””

  1. By LadyBird04 on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    Very glad to hear Palmer is returning and of course Larry too. Maybe his body would feel better on Wednesday if he wasn’t sacked 3 or more times a game (let’s not even count the hits he takes after he gets rid of the ball). O-line and other protection schemes need to improve and Arians has said he needs to do a better job of protecting Palmer.

    The Cardinals have had a real problem protecting their quarterback for the last decade or so. They nearly got Kevin Kolb killed…can you imagine separating your ribs from your sternum? Carson has been as durable as anyone could expect but the protection has to step up for him and any future quarterbacks the Cardinals hope to survive a season without going to IR.

    Glad you are back Carson!

  2. By Big Ken on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    I remember not too long ago fans wanted the Cardinals to trade up to draft Blaine Gabbert. Lol

  3. By JTDG on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    Big Ken,

    I remember that draft well.. 2011. The cards had the 5th spot and yes, this board was full of people wanting Gabbert. I was not one of them. I knew the Falcons wanted Julio.

    I thought we should trade with Atlanta, picking up multiple picks and at the end of round one take ( Ugghh – hate to admit it) Christian Ponder.

    Crazy, Ponder went to the Vikings at 12.

    If I was GM, I would have missed out on Ponder and either gone for the second choice who was left ( Andy Dalton) or traded down again (The saints gave up a two and next years one to come up)

    Yes, I would have had three 2nd rounders in 2011 and 3 First rounders in 2012, but no PP and no QB.

    That is where it gets tough. Trading down for a player who may not be there when you pick again.

  4. By Richard S on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    What Gabbert had going for him were some really good receivers at Mizzou. My all time favorite QB at Mizzou was Phil Bradley who ended up playing for the Seattle Mariners. I told Steve Spenaovich of the NBA, whom I met at the Phoenix airport, that I couldn’t believe Bradley didn’t get drafted by the NFL and he said he would probably play baseball. That was the first time I knew he did baseball too.

  5. By clssylssy on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    Too bad all the really good QBs are on the down side of 30, but all the more reason to invest in a top notch 0-line, to protect our resources and insure longevity. In my 20+ years as a Cards fan, I can’t remember one time when our 0-line was a priority, which may account for the less than stellar list of QBs we’ve had. I get that Goodie doesn’t like to start rookies, however in looking around at the teams in the playoffs, it seems other teams have been very successful, so what does this say about us? We seem to be all about the external “glitz” overlooking the need for the solid foundation. Don’t know if this is a basic coaching/GM flaw or if it’s more of an issue of desperation and cutting corners.
    As this wil most likely be our last shot with Palmer/Fitz/Arians, let’s hope Keim can get it right this time! We have zero credibility for developing QBs in the past twenty years, and developing a franchise QB from scratch seems an unrealistic goal. That would be a full time job for a coach, and I just don’t see Arians being able to pull that off at this stage of his life PLUS getting us to the playoffs. Young blood need young energy and young ideas.

  6. By steve on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    JTDG: I know I am probably the only one in the room that feels Pat Mahomes is the ideal QB for the Cards to take in this draft but after watching this kid play and reading his draft grade over on, I’m convinced. A scout on the draft profile was quoted as saying that Mahomes might drive a coach nuts for a couple of years but that if a coach could work with that and if Mahomes is coachable, he could be “pretty special.” The problem is 13 is probably a little early to take him but he likely will be gone when we pick in the 2nd. Keim could trade down in the bottom part of the 1st round and select Mahomes, though that could be tricky because I’m hearing late first is when he could be off the board. I’m no expert on QB’s though lol. I was one of those ardent fans of Blaine Gabbert when he came out and I wanted the Cards to take him at 5 so who knows!

  7. By Big Ken on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    Yes Pat Mahomes looks good. I don’t know if he fits BA’s scheme on offence. Remember he faced the Sun Devils early last season in that high scoring shootout. ASU winning.

  8. By Wild Blue Yonder on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    clssylssy (and others),

    Keim has tried to upgrade the OL e.g. Veldaheer (SP?), Lupati (SP?), Cooper (Bust; out of the NFL!!!), Humphries (effectiveness TBD).
    BUT, it’s a mixed bag.
    Keiim’s scouts and he have not exhibited good judgment.
    Unless Keim makes better FA and draft choices for OL and Arians devises better protection schemes foe Palmer, 2017 will not be any/much better (7-9, 8-8 or optimistically 9-7) than 2016 and Palmer’s body will tell him to walk away prior to the 2018 season.

  9. By Jacob Hewitt on Feb 10, 2017 | Reply

    What about Washington when will he be back

  10. By mitchaz on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply

    Cardinals’ Current Depth Chart: Offense

    QB CARSON PALMER, Drew Stanton, Zac Dysert
    RB DAVID JOHNSON, Kerwynn Williams, Elijhaa Penny
    WR LARRY FITZGERALD, Jaron Brown, Aaron Dobson
    WR J.J. NELSON, Marquis Bundy, Brittan Golden
    WR JOHN BROWN, Chris Hubert, Marvin Hall
    LT D.J. HUMPHRIES, Givens Price
    LG MIKE IUPATI, Caleb Johnson
    C EVAN BOEHM, Daniel Munyer
    RG JOHN WETZEL, Cole Toner
    RT JARED VELDHEER, Ulrich John
    TE DARREN FELLS, Ifeanyi Momah, Hakeem Valles, Troy Niklas

    Starter Need: G, TE
    Depth Need: RB, WR, C
    Future Need: QB

    UFA Possibilities:

    G—Kevin Zeitler (CIN); Larry Warford (DET); Luke Joeckel (JAX); Ronald Leary (DAL)

    TE—Martellus Bennett (NE); Jermaine Gresham (AZ); Jacob Tamme (TB); Luke Willson (SEA)

    RB—Eddie Lacey (GB); LeGarrett Blount (NE); James Starks (GB); Danny Woodhead (SD); DeAngelo Williams (PIT); Rex Burkhead (CIN); Tim Hightower (NO); Bennie Cunningham (LA)

    WR—Kenny Stills (MIA); Pierre Garcon (WAS); DeSean Jackson (WAS); Kendall Wright (TEN); Robert Woods (BUF); Terrelle Pryor (CLE); Kenny Britt (LA)

    C—A.Q. Shipley (AZ); Brian Schwenke (TEN); J.C. Trotter (GB); Joe Hawley (TB)

    QB—Mike Glennon (TB)

    * Have to give credit to Steve Keim for keeping as many ducks in a row, depth-wise, as he can, especially in light of having 20 UFAs.

    Your predictions (UFA or Draft Pick)?

    RG: __________________________
    TE: __________________________
    RB: __________________________
    WR: __________________________
    C: ___________________________
    QB: __________________________

    My guesses today are:

    RG: Luke Joeckel (UFA-JAX)—his versatility is a plus, with best years ahead of him and his contract won’t break the bank
    TE: Bucky Hodges (Round 2—Virginia Tech—too talented to pass up at #45)
    RB: Rex Burkhead (UFA-CIN)—hard runner, good receiver and STs player, made to order
    WR: Corey Davis (Round 1 pick—Western Michigan—has Cardinals written all over him—the DJ of WRs)
    C: A.Q. Shipley (UFA-AZ)—will compete with Evan Boehm for starting spot
    QB: Chad Kelly (Round 4 pick—Mississippi—worth the chance at this spot—can spend the year building back up his strength and learning the offense).

  11. By JTDG on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply


    Pat Mahomes;

    It is not that I don’t like him, I just don’t trust those spread QBs who have one read, get the ball out quick, work only in shotgun.

    He has never taken snaps like an NFL QB would, under center, while reading coverage and going to multiple reads.

    That worries me. Yes, he looks the part, but lots of risk.

    Because of that, he can’t be a first rounder to me. If he is there and Keim loves him in round two, take a chance. But lots of risk.

  12. By clssylssy on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply

    Wild Blue Yonder & All
    I realize that Keim has attempted to upgrade our 0-line and couldn’t agree with you more that he makes bad choices. As a former lineman, I would expect MUCH better from him and would think he would understand how critical it is to have good linemen both on offense as well as defense. I see a big issue as his attempt to skimp here in signing “discounted” players who have value as leaders but are in the twilight of their careers, are injury prone and really just situational players.
    We have managed to patch together an 0-line, at best weaving a few 2nd & 3rd year players into the rotation but much of the time don’t have the strong front necessary for our offense to be effective, intimidating or ranked. I know money is an issue but other teams have been very successful in juggling the Cap or just made better draft choices of players who will make an immediate impact. Goodie doesn’t like rookies, BA’s playbook is too complicated to learn in one year, Keim doesn’t make good choices…sounds like we have management problems more than issues with talent. What QB is going to want to play for a team where they get beat to Hell, and maybe have their career cut short by injuries? One has but to look at the teams making the playoffs, look at their linemen, and see how it played into their success as compared to the Cardinals. When building a custom house, you don’t spend all that money on upgrades if you have foundation problems!

  13. By JTDG on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply


    Is this my guess or what I want? If it is my best guess, here you go;

    At center, I have to follow what Darren said, they love AQ and will resign him. Surprised it hasn’t been done already.

    At QB, obviously Palmer and Stanton, but I think they draft a QB in round 1. Kizer or Watson. I think Watson is drafted before 13, so I go with Kizer. If Kizer is gone, they may look at Mahomes in round 2. I think if they can, they draft their QB. If they don’t draft one, it was because the one(s) they liked were gone.

    At TE, Gresham comes back

    At RB, I think they look at a draft pick, maybe 4th or 5th rounder.

    At WR, I believe they draft one. Either 2nd or 3rd round. Don’t be surprised if Zay Jones is the pick in round 3. I think they will possibly look at a receiver or CB to be a punt returner also.

    Now the tough two

    RG – I think if they miss out on Kizer, dont be surprised if Forest Lamp’s name is called. Not sexy, but a very good guard. It would be like drafting Zac Martin. They have 20 million in cap tied up with Iupati and Veldheer. I think if you were willing to move from one of them next year, then pay big bucks for a good young G.
    Zeitler and Warford are logic cases. But don’t sleep on Chance Warmack. Injured last year, could be someone they bring in for less money.

    CB – Logan Ryan. I think Keim won’t break the bank for Bouye or Gilmore. Ryan has been productive for several years, the Pats brought in Eric Rowe this year and will get another draft pick for Garappalo where they can draft a Cb. Ryan will hit the market and I think he will be targeted by AZ.

    I think you missed;

    Safety – I think they will save their money and it will be Branch and Badger

    ILB – I think they draft an ILB who will compete with who is here or one of those 1 year deals.

    DL – I don’t think Campbell is back. I think they add another rotational guy but will go young. Maybe, if he could get Hankerson or Baker at a good price. I could see them adding a player like that.

    OK, so the draft; My way to early guess

    The cards trade with Detroit as Kizer is drafted before 13. The cards drop to 21 and allows the Lions to get Derek Barrnett.

    At 21, the cards draft Forest Lamp

    With 2 2nd rounders, I think they land ILB Jarrad Davis and Pat Mahomes. Davis could start year one, and Mahomes is picked in the middle of round 2, worth the risk. If you remember, that is where Keim wanted to draft Carr.

    In round 3, I think they grab receiver Zay Jones at 2017’s version of David Johnson and John Brown. Small school guy with huge upside.

    T- Humphries
    G- Iupati
    C- shippley
    G- Lamp
    T – Veldheer
    TE – Gresham
    Wr – Fitz, Brown,Brown, Nelson, Jones

    OLB – Jones and Golden
    ILB – Jarrad Davis and Buccannon
    DE – Hankerson, Mauro, Gunter and Nkemdichi
    NT – Peters
    S- Badger and Branch
    CB – Peterson and Ryan

  14. By JTDG on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply


    Goody may not like rookies but Lamp could be the cards best Lineman. He can play all spots along the line including center. Too valuable to pass on.

  15. By Dominik on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply

    Some trade ideas:

    I. Trade Smokey Brown for Bashaud Breeland (CB, R’kins)
    Both players are 2017/18 in they’re contract years. AZ need CB help and Breeland can cover Nr. 1 Receivers. He’s cap hit in 2017 is $700.000. He is the perfect fit next to P2. The Redskins sign Josh Norman last offseason. I don’t think they can resign Breeland after next season. In addition they need WR help because Jackson and Garcon will hit the open market. Smokey can replace DeSean Jackson with his speed.

    ll. Trade Smokey Brown for Preston Brown (ILB, Bills)
    Buffalo’s Harvin, Hunter, Woods, Tate and Goodwin are all FA in march. So they need receivers opposite Watkins. Smokey is a good target for them. The Bills have to dicide if they resign Zach Brown. He had a great season. I think they can’t sign both. Preston Brown is a solid tackler and will upgrade Minter. He has also a low cap.

    lll. Trade Corey Peters for Telvin Smith (LB, Jaguars)
    I love the speed and atletism form Smith. He can read the game and will upgrade Minter. Corey will fill the DT spot in Jacksonville because Abry Jones left them. The cards will safe $3.000.000. If we also release Branch, we can resign Calais.

  16. By mitchaz on Feb 11, 2017 | Reply

    2107 Depth Chart (as of 2/11/2017)

    LDE RODNEY GUNTER, Robert Nkemdiche, Ed Stinson
    NT COREY PETERS, Xavier Williams
    RDE JOSH MAURO, Olsen Pierre
    LOLB MARKUS GOLDEN, Kareem Martin
    LILB SCOOBY WRIGHT, Gabe Martin, Xavier Gooden
    LCB PATRICK PETERSON, Ronald Zamort, Elie Bouka
    SS TYRANN MATHIEU, Christian Bryant
    FS HARLAN MILLER, Tyvon Branch, Trevon Hartfield

    Starter Needs: LILB, RCB, FS
    Depth Needs: DT, OLB, SS



    * In hearing Steve Keim on FOX radio this week, he strongly believes that DEs Rodney Gunter and Robert Nkemdiche will take significant steps forward in 2017. It sounded like an indication that Keim does not expect to be able to re-sign Calais Campbell, although he certainly will make Campbell an offer.

    * Having re-signed Josh Mauro to a 2 year deal and having drafted DEs in Gunter and Nkemdiche the past two years, Keim, if he cannot re-sign Campbell, is likely to try to add a veteran UFA to add to the rotation. Perhaps he will be content to re-sign Frostee Rucker, who has indicated that he wants to return. Rucker brings excellent leadership and if he can avoid the injury bug that diminished his snap counts and play in 2016, he once again could be a valuable disruptor in the DE rotation. If Keim wants to make a bolder move, he could try to work out a deal with former Sun Devil, Lawrence Guy (BAL), who would be a great fit in the Cardinals’ 34. Glen Dorsey (SF), Chris Baker (WAS) or Nick Fairley could also be on Keim’s radar.

    * The mystery options here are Ed Stinson and Olsen Pierre. Stinson has under-achieved in his three years, showing occasional flashes as a run stuffer, but not much push as a pass rusher. However, he heads into his contract year, which should provide added motivation. Pierre, who flashed some inside pass rush ability in the pre-season, was kept on the roster all season, despite not being activated for any game. What was somewhat surprising was that the Cardinals worried more about losing Pierre to waivers than 5th round draft pick FS Marqui Christian, who was plucked away by the Rams.


    * Keim said he was especially impressed with the play they got from Corey Peters. And with promising young NT Xavier Williams behind Peters, it looks like the Cardinals are pretty much set at NT. Plus, if need be, Rodney Gunter, who played fairly well at NT as a rookie, provides added depth.


    * Many pundits expect the Cardinals will re-sign LILB Kevin Minter, who called the vast majority of the plays in the huddle the past two years. Minter is a solid run stuffer and an improved blitzer, but he lacks ideal range and speed in coverage.

    *This draft is chock-full of very good ILB prospects such as Reuben Foster (Alabama), Haason Reddick (Temple), Jarrad Davis (Florida), Raekwon McMillan (Ohio St.), Zach Cunningham (Vanderbilt), Anthony Walker (Northwestern), Kendall Beckwith (LSU), Keith Kelsey (Louisville), Duke Riley (LSU), Alex Anzelone (Florida) and Ben Boulware (Clemson).

    * Thus, will Steve Keim re-sign Sio Moore, who played very well in Deone Bucannon’s absence, particularly in defending Russell Wilson? Will Keim wait on re-signing Minter until after the draft (that is if Minter is not scooped up by then)? If Keim re-signs Minter, would he take Reuben Foster as BPA at #13? Will James Bettcher want to sub in for Minter on passing downs as he did in 2015? If so, does Keim draft a speedy nickel type ILB like Duke Riley or Alex Anzelone?

    * Or—would Keim swing for the fences and make his biggest UFA signing on defense, Dont’a Hightower? There have been grumblings that the coaches have been concerned about the lack of leadership on defense along with a lack of consistent, fundamental tackling. Imagine then how Hightower would help to change those dynamics.

    * At $LB Keim believes that Deone Bucannon is primed to have his best year in 2017.

    * Keim has added solid depth at ILB and STs contributors in Scooby Wright, Alani Fua and Gabe Martin. Wright, if need be, could serve as a two down run stuffer and Fua and Martin could contribute as nickel LBs..

    * Lastly, Daryl Washington is saying he expects to be reinstated by the NFL in March. Having not played a down of football in three years and having destroyed all trust within the organization, Washington, one way or another, will be promptly ushered off the roster as soon as it is financially sound to do so.


    * Keim expects continued production and QB pressures from Markus Golden and Chandler Jones. The question is whether Keim will be able to sign Jones to a long-term deal and thus avoid having to pay him $15.4M on a one-year franchise tag tender.

    * The depth behind Golden and Jones has been very thin. Alex Okafor who played through injury last season and made some strides as a situational nickel rusher from outside and inside is now a free agent. Okafor has indicated his desire to stay with the Cardinals. If he doesn’t command big bucks elsewhere, perhaps Keim could sign Okafor to a one year prove-it deal laden with incentives. Kareem Martin flashes one or two plays a year and tends to disappear. He heads into a contract year. Could he assume Okafor’s inside/outside role this year? Keim signed Cap Capi to a future’s contract, so he could be in the mix.

    * In FA, the OLB pickings are rather slim. The Cardinals can’t afford to offer starter’s money to the top OLBers available. The UFA OLBers who might be affordable or candidates for one year prove it deals are: John Simon (HOU), Tourek Williams (SD), Jarvis Jones (PIT) and Bryan Braman (HOU).

    * Regardless of what Keim does at OLB in FA, he will need to add a young edge rusher in the draft. At #13 there could be some intriguing options: Solomon Thomas (Stanford), Derek Barnett (Tennessee), Taco Charlton (Michigan) and Charles Harris (Missouri). While the initial thought may be to address another position at #13, if Keim does not have a long-term deal in place with Chandler Jones by the draft, then drafting an edge usher at #13 could be a strong consideration, particularly if Solomon Thomas or Derek Barnett are on the board.

    * In round two, A.J. Watt (Wisconsin), Carl Lawson (Auburn), Ryan Anderson (Alabama), Devonte Fields (Louisville) and DeMarcus Walker (FSU) would be intriguing options.

    * In round three or four: Daeshon Hall (Texas A&M), Tarell Basham (Ohio) and Jordan Willis (Kansas St.) could be good fits.


    * Patrick Peterson continues to be one of the top cover CBs in the NFL. This season should be a very interesting one for Pat P. having been omitted from PFF’s top 101 list, and being on the verge of establishing himself as a leader on and off the field, Peterson could take a step forward by being more assertive in run support and on STs, where he has struggled.

    * Opposite Peterson, the team has indicated they would like to re-sign Marcus Cooper, who led the squad with 4 interceptions. Cooper’s overall play was inconsistent, but with a year in the system and with improved safety help, perhaps Cooper could take his game to the next level.

    * Brandon Williams will work harder than anyone to push for a starting job this season. He has all the physical abilities—but his inexperience and inconsistent technique made him far too vulnerable as a rookie.

    * Justin Bethel should be healthy this year. His play as a nickel CB late in the season was very encouraging and he will have every opportunity to win the starting RCB job even if Cooper is re-signed. The Cardinals need Bethel to resume his role as the ace gunner on STs. His foot injury hampered him in that role as well.

    * Harlan Miller is emerging as a combo nickel FS/CB. His versatility could very well land him on the roster this year.

    * Elie Bouka, the prize recruit from Canada, should be healthy this year as well. He has the size and speed to be very effective in coverage and he has intriguing ability as a punt and kickoff returner.

    * Ronald Zamort is an aggressive young CB who could keep progressing on the PS.

    * If Keim does not re-sign Marcus Cooper, the UFA CBs who could be of interest are Morris Claiborne (DAL), Dre Kirkpatrick (CIN), A.J. Buoye (HOU), Stephone Gilmore (BUF), Trumaine Johnson (LAR), Prince Amukamara (JAX), Logan Ryan (NE) and Darius Butler (IND). Kirkpatrick, Bouye, Gilmore and Johnson will likely be too expensive. But making a run for Ryan Logan and adding his versatility as a starting RCB, nickel CB and productive tackler could be a boon for the Cardinals. If Ryan is too pricey, Amukamara or Butler could be a good signing.

    * The draft is loaded with top CB prospects. At #13 the Cardinals might have a shot at drafting stud CBs Marshon Lattimore (Ohio St.), Sidney Jones (Washington), Quincy Wilson (Florida) or Teez Tabor (Florida).

    * Some day 2 steals: Desmond King (Iowa), Jourdan Lewis (Michigan), Cordrea Tankersley (Clemson) Adoree’ Jackson (USC), Tre’Davious White (LSU), Damontae Kazee (San Diego St.), Cameron Sutton (Tennessee), Marlon Humphrey (Alabama), Chidobe Awuzie (Colorado) and Gareon Conley (Ohio St.). Wow, what a treasure trove of young CB talent this is.


    * Keim has been raving about the work that Tyrann Mathieu is putting into his weight training. He says that Honey Badger has already become noticeably thicker in his shoulders and upper body. The plan is to move the Badger back into the box at SS and at nickel CB, where he can pester receivers in coverage and harass QBs on blitzes.

    * If Keim is unable to re-sign Calais Campbell, there is a decent chance that he will take that money and use it to re-sign SS Tony Jefferson and FS/SS D.J. Swearinger. The Cardinals play 3-4 safeties so frequently that Mathieu, Jefferson and Swearinger could all be considered starters. Keim has said that re-signing Jefferson, the team’s most consistent tackler and cover man on TEs, is a priority.

    * Swearinger made tremendous strides at FS, became an conscientious student of the game and a very good communicator in the secondary, while knocking the snot out of any WR who dared to catch the ball over the middle. The need for a starting FS is imminent. Tyvon Branch was underwhelming in 2016 and might have to be released to create cap space. Harlan Miller filled in admirably the last two games and looks like he could be an asset as a nickel Cover 2 FS. But adding another Cover 2 type FS in the draft would be wise.

    * Christian Bryant and Trevor Hartfield provide depth. Hartfield has very good size and toughness.

    * if Keim is unable to re-sign Jefferson and Jamal Adams (LSU) is on the board at #13, he could be Keim’s BPA. Adams is a game changer.

    * Later round S prospects: Marcus Williams (Utah), John Johnson (BC), Budda Baker (Washington), Eddie Jackson (Alabama), Josh Harvey-Clemons (Louisville), Obi Melifonwu (CT) and Weston Steelhammer (Air Force).


    * LS Gabe Brewer was an in-season upgrade. He wasn’t as consistently accurate as Mike Leach was. It would not be a total surprise if Steve Keim tries to coax Mike Leach out of retirement for one more year. Regardless, if Keim can make another upgrade here, he should. Zack DeOssie (NYG) is a UFA.

    * At punter, it looks like Keim found a good, strong leg in Matt Wile. Good too that Keim has signed CFL standout, Richie Leone to challenge Wile.

    * At PK, Chandler Catanzaro had his fair share of struggles—some caused by poor snaps and less than crisp holds. This year Keim must give Cat-Man some competition. Zane Gonzalez (Arizona St.) and Jake Elliott (Memphis) could be give strong consideration in the draft.

  17. By mitchaz on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply


    Your logic behind drafting Forest Lamp is excellent, especially in an all or nothing year.

    I also like your UFA signings of DE Hankerson and CB Ryan and your drafting of ILB Jarrad Davis and WR Zay Jones.

    What would surprise me very much is whether QB Pat Mahomes will be available at #45. Some teams have him rated as the #1 QB. If the Cardinals want Mahomes, they will have to take him at #13 (if he’s not already taken).

    I just can’t see the Cardinals taking a QB at #13 because the QBs in this draft are nowhere near being the BPA in the 1st round. None of them are ready to start as rookies—and most of them may take 2-3 years to become starters. However, they will go in round one to teams that are desperate—but the Cardinals are not desperate yet—next year yes—this year, no.

    Your other prediction that surprises is the Cardinals not re-signing either Tony Jefferson or D.J. Swearinger…in favor of going with Mathieu and Branch as the starting safeties. For one—the Cardinals play 3-4 safeties 75% of the time. For two—Branch is coming off an underwhelming, injury plagued season (for which he will possibly be released) and he is not an effective FS, so much so that the Cardinals hardly ever played him at FS.

    If that were the case, and Mahomes is off the board in your mock, would you take a safety in that spot? Buddy Baker? Marcus Williams? John Johnson? Obi Melifonwu?

    Also—what is your take on QB Chad Kelly and QB C.J. Beathard? I am intrigued by both of these young QBs.

  18. By Scott H on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    I understand and applaud Palmer’s mind-set. I have no idea what a 37 year old body feels like by the end of an NFL season. I expressed a little irritation last week when it seemed like this thing with Palmer was hanging out there, but….first, it was getting played up by the media a bit ( not necessarily the local media ), and second, it just took me off guard that there seemed to be any un-certainty around Palmer at all. I thought he’d already stated he was playing in 2017. Anyway, doesn’t matter. He’s in.

    I, for one, have never thought of Palmer as fragile. Yeah, he’s had a couple of serious season-ending injuries along the way but he has NOT been injury prone. For as long as he’s played, the couple serious injuries he’s had seemed like what would probably happen to anyone. Palmer is a big guy and seems pretty tough to me.

    In comparison to just about anyone, I find Tom Brady to be remarkable. Still playing at 39 and playing at a top notch level…..still has the fire…..still wants to play…..probably still wants to win a couple more SB’s!. Say what ya want about the guy, but there is just NO way to deny his greatness. Saying he wants to play for another FIVE years??? I don’t imagine he actually will but I’m pretty sure he really believes he can.

    FWIW, there was another reason I REALLY wanted Palmer to play in 2017 – Tony Romo. It looks like there is going to be a Tony Romo Derby this off-season and I would have wanted NO part of that. IF Palmer had stepped down, you know all the so-called experts would be putting the Cardinals at the top of the list of teams who should try to get Romo in a trade. Again, I wanted NO PART of Romo. His durability is shot, as his body at this point. He won’t make it through a month at this point, let alone a season. Don’t know if the Cardinals would even have considered Romo an option, but…..with Palmer back this year, Romo can be deflected somewhere else. I think whoever trades for him is going to get taken. The man just can’t do it anymore. HE’S gonna say he feels great and is raring to go. And that will last until he takes that first sack that drives him into the ground and separates his shoulder ( again ). No thanks, man.

    I have a Cowboys fan co-worker who is telling me every day the Cardinals need to get Romo because Palmer is “done” and Romo is a better QB, anyway. I just want to punch him, I really do. Is it any wonder why people hate Cowboys fans??????

  19. By mitchaz on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    Scott H—

    Tony Romo would last about 2 weeks in BA’s offense. He is one hit away from calling it a career.

    Had Carson Palmer retired, Steve Keim would pull out all the stops to get Fitz a QB he could be happy with, which is why some had been speculating that the Cardinals would go after Romo.

    While I agree with you that Carson Palmer is one tough cookie, I also was concerned about Palmer’s delay in telling the team if he is returning. They say that if you are pondering retirement on a daily basis, you already have one foot out the door.

    Beyond that, what i worry about is his erratic decision making in the pocket under duress. The offense, as BA has designed it, does not, imho, fit Carson Palmer’s current strengths. Zero protections—not a good thing for Palmer. He’s not a quick read, quick trigger QB.

    Moreover, 3/5th of the o-linemen are better run blockers than pass protectors.

    And the deep ball, which is so critical in BA’s high octane vertical offense is a thing of the past because Palmer has clearly has lost his sense of timing and touch. Why? Because he either rushes the ball (overthrows) or he holds on to it too long (underthrows).

    I thought his decision making in the red zone this year was often inexcusably bad. One example—in Minnesota—with the Vikings’ #3 CB on Fitz to the right, and with their #1 CB (Rhodes) and #2 CB on John Brown’s side (to the left), Palmer elects to throw a timing pass to the left pylon to where he expects Brown to be—only Brown gets tied up on a press by #2 CB (Munnerlyn) and Rhodes sits right in the route, easily intercepts the ball and takes it 99 yards to the house. Now—that was a key game for the Cardinals. The Vikings had lost 3 games in a row and were reeling and the Cardinals needed to get back to .500 and beyond to make a playoff run.

    Ball security has to be a QB’s #1 priority—and I just wonder too many times where Carson Palmer’s head is. Like the Panthers game—after throwing the ball right to the Panthers in the playoffs, you’d think the game plan was not to make any “haste” mistakes. Yet, on the second series in a 0-0 game, while being sacked, he attempts a shovel pass with a flick of his wrist from his ribs (which was impossible for the refs to see). Yes, had replay been working (freaking a), Palmer would have been bailed out and Davis’ fumble return TD would not have counted—but the play should not have happened in the first place. That’s the point. So, the Panthers go wild—they are suddenly rejuvenated—their fans are roaring—and then it becomes deja vu all over again.

    Plays like these make me wonder if Palmer is incapable of changing.

    Now—to his credit—two of his cleanest games in terms of ball security came in the road wins (Weeks 16-17 at SEA and LA). If CP can carry over that approach into 2017, then we could be in for a treat. I sure hope so, for his sake, Fitz’s, the team’s and the fans’.

    Just in case, I am hoping for a #2 QB (not Stanton) who can pick the team up if Palmer can’t..

  20. By clssylssy on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    Interesting, but who do you think that #2 could be? I think you are overlooking a factor here, and that is BA’s stubbornness. BA has steadfastly has considered Drew Stanton his guy and I don’t see that changing because he’s comfortable with knowing that Drew has been able to step up for Palmer before, and he knows how BA thinks. (Remember it took half a season for our offense to learn BA’s playbook which is no small issue) I see this as almost as big an obstacle as actually finding a future QB, which is a big reason I wouldn’t be hasty in signing our franchise QB until we have a new HC. And, in this regard, I have to agree with BA, the risk of losing a few games while a new guy gets up to speed isn’t worth going with what you know works, especially if this is a “Win Now” year. If you look at Palmer in 2015, as compared to this year, I believe his success was more about the 0-line or lack thereof. Just the change in Centers was huge and I don’t believe Palmer had the same confidence in AQ as he did Sendlein, who he had more experience with. Considering he got beat to Hell on a regular basis, I think Palmer is one of the toughest QBs in the league and his recovery and unflappability are unmatched; you hit Aaron Rogers consistently and hard and we have seen that it makes him mad and throws him off his game. You remember Palmer missed time with a concussion in addition to having a bad finger and shoulder that effected his throwing mechanics. I agree Romo wouldn’t last five minutes playing for BA because he is practically wired together with screws–not saying he hasn’t played through injuries but I’m not sure the team could get by with that anymore.
    Usually when people have to “think it over”, that is a red flag, as you said, and I think for both Fitz and Palmer, their ambivalence about coming back was less to do with their physical health than other factors.
    I kinda wish you and JTDG, were in the front office instead of who we have.

  21. By Scott H on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    Mitchaz –

    I always appreciate your breakdowns and this one was fair and well-done. I like Palmer, overall, but agree he has an in-consistency to him that makes me want to kick furniture sometimes. He can play as well as any QB in the league at times and for stretches. Then, he can go the other way…..

    You say that had Palmer retired, SK would have pulled out all the stops to get Fitz a QB. But I don’t think there was any way we were going to see a 2017 Cardinals team that included Fitz but not Palmer. I’m pretty sure Fitz had an assurance that Palmer was playing. I mean, if your Larry Fitzgerald at this point, are you going to play at 34 with a rookie QB or a veteran re-tread ( like Romo ? ) that probably gives you no chance to be legit? I say no way. Fitz was only coming back if Palmer was, too.

    Thank the lord they both did!

    I spoke in a recent post about how Palmer has seemed to have a tendency to carry how he was playing at the end of one season into the next. So, that DOES bode quite well for us if 2016 carries over into 2017. Palmer was very sharp at the end of the season. He looked confident and was putting balls right where they needed to be. He has clearly found a new friend in Nelson and I’m REAL excited about Nelson for 2017. I also look forward to JARON Brown getting a chance to become ( possibly ) a full-time player. If Smoky can get his health on track and be back to himself by training camp, this WR corps is gonna rock.

    Yeah, Palmer struggled behind an O-line that got pretty shot up by injuries. But hopefully we have Jared back at full strength and the guys who got the playing time last year will be much better prepared. You say the O-line is better suited for run blocking….and I say that ain’t a bad thing when you have David Johnson in the backfield! An effective run game is probably the best way to back off the pass rush, so…..all of this should make life about as good as it can get for Carson Palmer. At some point….he’s either good enough or he’s not. The 2015 season started me thinking that maybe he’s not, but…..I’m more than happy to take another shot with him this season.

    The ONE thing I fear is injuries. For me, that is the ONE thing that can de-rail what 2017 could be for this team. If the right guys stay healthy ( or, at least MOST of them ), there should be no need for excuses. There is getting beaten by a better team and there is beating yourself. I can live with the former. But it’s hard to live with the latter.

    All I want for 2017 is for the team to stay healthy and play to its TRUE capability. Give me that and let the chips fall where they may. You agree?

  22. By mitchaz on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply


    Good points about BA’s stubbornness. At times I wonder if it has more to do with convenience—in Stanton’s case BA doesn’t have to train another backup—but Stanton was awful in the pre-season and, although he did win his one start vs. the 49ers at home, he was shaky and was equally shaky in other appearances—check these 2016 stats: (19/48/39.6%/4.0 ypr/2-td/3-int)—and to think that Stanton has been in BA’s system for the past 5 years.

    Of course, then there is the situation with Drew Butler. Not only did keeping him contribute heavily to the STs debacles, it cost the Cardinals their 5th round pick, FS Marqui Christian—all for Butler to be able to hold for a week.

    Then, there is the situation with his friend Amos Jones. Now, BA still has a chip on his shoulder for being terminated by the Steelers—and he would hate to do that to one of his coaches, especially a long-time friend. But—BA—you were good at your job—Jones clearly is not. It has been 4 years of subpar STs play—but you call Jones a brilliant coach?

    While there hasn’t been much reported as to why Stump Mitchell took a lateral move to go be the RB’s coach of the Jets, one has to wonder whether BA rubbed him the wrong way. Mitchell deserved a new contract and a raise for the job he’s done with David Johnson. Yet, Mitchell is gone with the wind (pun intended).

    The bottom line is—for a coach who professes to be all about one thing, winning a ring, he sure doesn’t hold some of his players and coaches to the highest, championship-winning standards. This is why it is hard to trust in BA. With BA the words and the music don’t always match.

  23. By mitchaz on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    Scott H—

    BA has said that he plans to do more to protect Carson Palmer this year. That would be good start. It also appears that BA will not ask Larry Fitzgerald to dos much in the box blocking as he’s done the past three years.Let’s face it, BA has been using Fitz as a slightly flexed or motion TE.

    If BA does cater his offense more to Palmer’s strengths—maybe his good play the l;last two games will carry over to this season, as you suggest.

    It’s still hard to believe that with all the injuries the Cardinals have suffered under Arians that he still doesn’t believe in team stretching. That is truly bizarre.

    Man it would be great if BA turns a new leaf this season—he sounds like he is in earnest. He’s already said that “Camp Cupcake” is a thing of the past. Again, that’s a very good sign.

  24. By Big Ken on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    I’ve heard the Titans are drafting a WR in round one. They covet Mike Williams who could be there at the 13th pick but not the 18th when they pick. The Titans have no 2nd rounder but two thirds and say a fifth. That would be a lot just to swap first round picks.

  25. By steve on Feb 12, 2017 | Reply

    Mitchaz, JTDG: It’s a tough call with the QB’s this draft, I think Keim likes Mahomes (just my hunch) but probably not enough to take him at 13 but knowing most likely when our pick comes up at #45, Mahomes will be gone. He could try to trade down in the first, say to between the 18-22 range and take Pat if he is still there. Kizer, Webb, Dobbs all look like career backups which is why I think only Trubisky and Mahomes have starting potential at QB. Mitchaz brought up an interesting name, Ole Miss Chad Kelly. Kelly has good mobility, a top shelf arm and the toughness required to play QB but carries questionable off the field character issues. He might be the only good fall back option for BA and Keim if they miss out on the top 2 QB’s,Trubisky and Mahomes. I think Kelly goes in the 4-5th rds and might be worth a shot at that point.

  26. By mitchaz on Feb 13, 2017 | Reply

    Big Ken:

    The Titans have the #5 and #18 picks in the 1st round. If they really like Mike Williams, they will take him at #5.

    Seeing as they have no 2nd rounder, if the Cardinals love a player at #5, they could offer the Titans the #13 and #45 picks,

    But—what player would be worth trading up for?

    1. Malik Hooker, FS, Ohio St. He is a faster version of Ed Reed and could make the Cardinals’ secondary elite..

    2. If the Cardinals are sold on QB Deshaun Watson or QB Mitch Trubiski as the QBOF, giving up a 2nd round pick is worth the price.

    3. Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU. Elite RB. Would allow the Cardinals to run a power attack, divvying up carries between DJ and Leonard Fournette and would allow them to use DJ more in the slot.

  27. By mitchaz on Feb 13, 2017 | Reply


    I too am impressed with Mahomes. The irony is that BA scoffs at spread offence college QBs (sure, they don’t ever get behind center or call plays in a huddle), but BA loves passing out of the spread, which, imo, Mahomes does better than any QB in this draft.

    Chad Kelly has been pushed back some because of his ACL injury and rehab and, as you say, the off-field immaturity, But if there is any QB in this draft who could be a Dak Prescott type of steal in Round 3 or 4, it’s Kelly, who put up bigger SEC numbers than Prescott.

  28. By Big Ken on Feb 13, 2017 | Reply

    Mitchaz: I don’t see the Cardinals moving up. Move back possibly, Titans or Lions maybe. I think the Titans go Defense with that number five pick. The Cardinals probably stay pat at 13.

  29. By D on Feb 13, 2017 | Reply

    Probably a good idea to wait on draft selections for AZ until we are 4-5 weeks into free agency. With AZ having so many UFA’s hard to determine at this point on what holes will be filled by resigning their own players /free agents and what holes the draft will be needed to fill.

    If C. Campbell isn’t retained and we believe we are still in a NFC championship window with Larry and Carson, then Mr. Keim will fill holes with free agents with the additional Cap Space for 2017 rather than lean on draft picks for the upcoming season.

  30. By Scott H on Feb 13, 2017 | Reply

    Not related, but….holy cow, did anyone see the story running on about Floyd making the ridiculous claim that he “ended up on a team that loved him?” My God, it is actually sad to read the comments he makes. How out of touch with reality can a human being be???

    No, Michael, you didn’t end up on a team that loved you. You ended up on a team that saw an opportunity to get a couple of games out of a WR they thought could help them for cheap. And when they saw how little you offered in the couple of games you played in, they told you they didn’t need you for the AFC title game and then the Super Bowl. That’s not love, bro. That’s what the Patriots do.

    THEY won a SB. You didn’t.

    THEY are champions. You aren’t.

    He also supposedly tweeted pics of himself posing with and kissing the Lombardi trophy. Good lord, I think I’m going to be sick….I really would not have expected such completely ridiculous and antagonistic behavior from him. He never seemed like that kind of guy.

    Maybe that’s what being a “champion” does to people.

    BTW, Michael, your career with the Patriots was…..what, 5 catches for about 50 yards and no TD’s? Yeah, you really put them over the top didn’t ya? Tom Brady was nothing until you came along.

    Some people should just appreciate the good fortune they never deserved and not draw attention to themselves. What an ass.

  31. By JTDG on Feb 13, 2017 | Reply


    I wanted to get back to your questions;

    * Mahomes available at 45;

    I think he is. I just don’t think he is a first rounder. He is a project with a lot of unknowns. If I needed to , maybe I would move up to top of round 2, but I am not sold on even that.

    * The safeties;

    Just a hunch. I could be wrong. They could resign Swearinger. I would. Let’s get that straight. But Badger with 8 million and Branch with 4 million, how do you justify another 4-6 million?

    I would be for drafting a safety, but you only have so many draft picks. It would just depend on who was there and who you were choosing that safety over. Say, you have Jarrad Davis sitting there and a hole at ILB, can you choose a Bubba Baker?

    * Other QBs;

    3 months ago, I brought up Chad Kelly. He is a gritty gunslinger type. Rumored he is a snotty brat in past years. He is an interview guy. If BA and Keim sit down and like him, take him late. If you sit down and there are questions, pass on him.

    Beathard to me is a Max Hall type, try hard guy. He might make a roster and hang around for years.

    * As for BPA, that is a myth. Very few teams truly choose BPA. I would question whether any QBs could be in the top 15 if we went BPA.

    Which brings up another point. Deshawn Watson. The only reason I am not bringing him up is, I think he goes very high. I think if he is there at 13, I would pull the trigger on him.

  32. By clssylssy on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply

    When I hear Keim talking and reading Darren’s latest article, what I hear is: “I Need To Sign A Franchise QB To PROTECT MY TENURE & INSURE MY LEGACY. Being in a position of having our back’s in a corner and being on notice from Palmer & Fitz, I’m sure has a lot of people at the top wondering about their future but I hope that this doesn’t detour them for the task at hand–getting to the playoffs and having another chance at a SB win (maybe for the last time in the foreseeable future). Winning a SB for this franchise after being the oldest franchise in the NFL (as well as to have only been to SB once in it’s entire history), will bring far more personal recognition than signing a mediocre QB.
    And, from this year’s crop, I only see Kizer or Trubisky as having a shot with our system, but then again, nobody really to develop them. As much as I didn’t find Barkley to be the answer, he’s the best we’ve been able to come up with and we let him go to be a decent backup for Chicago.
    Decisions made under pressure rarely turn out go and this feels like it’s going to be an “impulse purchase”.

  33. By Cardinal's Chick on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply

    What about a trade for Garoppolo? He has a good command of the offense. A fast release, but also escapes pressure quickly. Good ball placement and knows when to change speed on his passes. He spreads the ball around to all of his targets. I realize that he only has 2 starts…but he seems to be worth consideration. My got feeling is that he could be a good fit….only concern is the same one I have now with Palmer. Protection….or lack thereof.

  34. By mitchaz on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply

    Cardinals’ Chick:

    I am so with you on trading for Garoppolo. In my opinion, he is head and shoulders more talented, instinctive and fundamentally sound than any QB in this draft class.

    If the Cardinals are thinking about taking a QB at #13, then they should be asking themselves whether giving up the #13 pick for Garoppolo—who is going into his 4th year and who has been groomed by Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels—is a better option than rolling the dice on one of the rookies.

    If the Cardinals ever wanted an audition for JG—they sure got one in week 1.

    Plus, BA has been giving JG high praise, whenever he has been asked about him. BA praises his composure, his quick release, his feet (says that he can beat you with his feet just as much as with his arm) and, most of all, his accuracy. Pretty much everything you just said.

    The thing is—no matter what rookie QB the Cardinals pick this year, there is no way BA is going to start that rookie in year 2. BA would rather go with a QB who has some NFL experience.

    There is no Peyton Manning, Big Ben or Andrew Luck in this draft.Those were rookies who fell into BA’s lap. Right time, right place.

    Do the Cardinals want to see JG go to the 49ers and have him play for Shanahan the next 6 years?

    If Steve Keim can pull a trade off for JG, I the Cardinals would be set at QB for the next 10 years.

  35. By mitchaz on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply


    * I agree that if the Cardinals want Mahomes they will have to take him at #13 or trade down within 10-15 spots in the 1st round.

    * What i don’t understand is why you are keeping Tyvon Branch who struggled all of last season? He’s due $4.5 M vs. the cap, but only $1.8M in dead money, thus the Cardinals would save $2.8M on the cap, which they could use to sign Jefferson or Swearinger or both. Plus, Branch can’t play FS and he’s not an aggressive enough tackle to play SS. What he is—he’s a tall, fairly fast (didn’t show that much last year) safety who can cover TEs and slot WRs.

    * I think we have agreed on Chad Kelly all along.

    * C.J. Beathard, imo, is way more talented and tougher than Max Hall ever was. I hope you watch a little more film on him. I was skeptical at first, but man did he grow on me. Plays smart…nice smooth release…ball comes out of his hand quickly and cleanly. Better deep passer than he gets credit for. Threw the best deep pass at the Senior Bowl.

    * I think you are right about Deshaun Watson. BA and SK are very tight with Dabo Swinney. Plus, SK saw Clemson’s week of practice in AZ prior to the Fiesta Bowl. Watson was fantastic in the playoffs and Keim had a front row seat.

  36. By mitchaz on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply


    Check out this highlight tape of C.J. Beathard’s junior year. Sure, it’s a highlight tape—but was is clearly evident:

    1. Excellent play action execution.
    2. Good strong deep throws with timing a air time.
    3. Moves and throws equally well to right and left (squares up shoulders on the run, beautifully).
    4. Good mobility in the red zone. Can win with his feet.
    5. Plays bigger, stronger than 6-2, 209 would suggest

  37. By JTDG on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply



    I would not keep him. I am guessing what Keim does. Big difference.

    Keim signed Branch because he is fast with length and was suppose to be the FS all year.

    Now you and I see a journeyman who could be cut and save 3 million in cap space.

    And again, if it was me, I would have Jones signed , not tagged, and stagger his contract into 2018. I would do the same for all my FAs.
    I would sign Stephon Gilmore, Kevin Zeitler, Campbell, Jefferson and Swearinger on day one of FA (or before with our guys)

    Yes, they all can be signed if you manipulate the cap by paying bonuses and future guarantees.

    I have said many times, we have 70 million in cap space in 2018, plus another 25-30 million if Palmer and Fitz leave. Not to mention, letting Iupati loose in 2018 frees up another 6 million. When you are talking about a 100 million plus, you can do a lot of things.

    I would draft Mike Williams, Teez Tabor or Forest Lamp with the 13th pick. The 45th, Adore Jackson would be a great pick.

    If I had my way, my lineup in 2017 would be;
    T- Veldheer
    G – Zeitler
    C – Lamp
    G- Iupati
    T – Humphries
    TE – Gresham
    WRs – Fitz, Brown, Brown, Nelson and Zay Jones
    QB Palmer and Stanton

    OLB – Jones and Golden
    DE – Campbell, Mauro, Nkemdichi, Gunter
    NT Peters and Williams
    ILB – Bucannon and one of those 1 year deals (D Qwell Jackson, Dansby if released) still a question mark there.
    CB – Peterson, Gilmore, Cooper and Jackson
    S – Badger, Jefferson, Swearinger,

    But You asked, what do you think will happen? Very different

  38. By Darren Urban on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: Jones

    You say you’d have him signed. Curious to know what your contract would look like.

  39. By Jamessamuels on Feb 14, 2017 | Reply

    Don’t worry about our 2nd corner opposite of Patrick Peterson because I believe Justin Bethel will handle it very well. Last year before Bethels surgery with his foot the Cardinals thought Bethel would be the 2nd corner and paid him for it. Bethel is Healthy and at that point where He is ready to prove his worth. Failure in progress? This year Bethel needs to be “GREATNESS IN PROGRESS”

  40. By JTDG on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply

    Of Course Darren,

    I am not in the room with Jones’agent, so I dont know what his demands are.
    I also do not have all the info in front of me, so I will have to be general.

    So, I would base my contract on Justin Houston’s. (signed in 2015) and Olivier Vernon (signed in 2016)

    Houston – 6 years / 101 million, 32 million guaranteed – 16.8 million a year
    Vernon – 5 years / 85 million with 40 million guaranteed = 17 million a year

    So we have our base line.

    So I would sign him to a 6 year / 105 million dollar contract. with 53 million guaranteed.
    Here is the structure;

    Signing bonus – 15 million
    Year one salary – 2 million – Cap hit = 4.5 million in 2017
    Year two salary – 18 million – cap hit 20.5 million in 2018 fully guranteed
    Year 3 salary – 18 million – cap hit of 20.5 million in 2019 fully guaranteed
    Year 4 salary – 17.3 million – cap hit of 19.8 million (no guarantees at this point – if cut it is a 7.5 million hit with 12.3 in cap relief.
    Year 5 salary – 17.3 million – cap hit 19.8 million (if cut, cap hit of 5 million and 13.8 million in cap relief)
    Year 6 salary – 17.3 million cap hit of 19.8 million (if cut, a 2.5 milllion cap hit with 17.3 million in cap relief)

    With 3 years guaranteed, you would have room in 2019 to sign Golden to an extension and if deemed necessary, release Jones to free up cap space.

    Why Jones signs? His guarantees are the largest of anyone.
    The cards benefit because Jones counts in 2017 as 4.5 million in cap.
    With @ 40 million in cap space, 4.5 million is a very nice number.
    As the available cap jumps to 100 million next year (assuming Fitz and Palmer are gone), a 20 million cap hit is manageable.

    My risk? if Jones takes the money and stops playing. But I don’t see that.

    Now, with 36 million and similar philosophies, can you sign Zeitler? Gilmore ? Campbell ? Jefferson ? Swearinger ?

    You see anything wrong in this Darren? Do you think Jones would already be signed?

  41. By Darren Urban on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: Jones

    Only issue there IMO is that Vernon got $29M the first year. You have Jones with $17M. Guarantees or no, I don’t see any way Jones’ agent goes for that.

  42. By JTDG on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply


    So you think they would rather have 29 million up front and 40 million guaranteed, then have 17 million up front, but the largest guaranteed contract of any non QB player (not named Suh) in NFL history?

    I think personally, I take 53 million guaranteed over 40 million guaranteed, wouldn’t you?

    But to speak to your comment, it is tough to know what the agent wants if I am not at the table speaking to them.

    But frankly, they are getting 35 million in first two years , Vernon got 40 million.
    So, if you added another bonus of 6-8 million in 2018, Jones gets more money in first two years.

    Or you could up the bonus to 27 million and move the cap hit from 4.5 to 6.5 in 2017

    If I am there, I would know what I could push to get the deal done.

    Kevin Zeitler is looking at a 5 year 60 million. The top guard has around 25 million in guarantees and no bonus.
    Giving Zeitler a 10 million dollar bonus with 30 million in guarantees and 2 million in salary in 2017 gives him 12 million in 2017 but a 4 million dollar hit.

    Gilmore – Janoris Jenkins inked a 5 year 62 million dollar deal with the giants with 10 million in bonus and 29 million in guarantees. Same thing applies.
    5 years, 65 million with 14 in bonuses, 32 in guarantees. 2 million in salary in 2017 with a 4.8 million cap hit .

    It can be done, especially when you are looking at a rookie QB in 2018.

  43. By Darren Urban on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: Contract

    I’m not sure where you are getting $40M guaranteed. I think they are going to want at least what Vernon got in the first year and more in guarantees than what he got.

  44. By JTDG on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply


    As for Campbell, the best bookmark to look at is 31 year old Michael Bennett.

    Bennett got 3 years 30 million, 8 million in bonus and 14 million guaranteed. It is a complicated contract imo. But it appears he gets 14+ million in 2017 making it a 1 year deal in part. So lets be simple.

    Campbell gets more money up front , 4 year 40 million with 12 million in signing bonus. He has a 2 million dollar salary in 2017 making his cap hit at 5 million.
    That gives him 14 million in pocket year one.
    That means in 2018, he has a 8.6 million salary with 11.6 million cap hit. if released, he counts as 9 million in dead money. In 2019, he has a 8.6 million salary, 11.6 against the cap and 6 million dead money against the cap, freeing up 5.6 million if released.
    So, it could be a 2 year deal in a way.

  45. By Darren Urban on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: Campbell

    I agree Bennett is the Campbell benchmark. I would doubt, in your scenario, they would want 6M in dead money in year three if they could avoid it. We will see.

  46. By JTDG on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply


    Vernon got 40 million guaranteed. Jones would have 53 million. Still think 53 million and 15 million up front is better than 40 million and 29 up front.

    But easy fix. If that is what it takes to swing a deal, he gets 6 years 105 million with 30 million bonus.

    2017 – 1 million in salary with 30 million in bonus that is a 6 million dollar hit in 2017
    2018 – 14.8 in salary – cap hit of 19.8 million fully guaranteed
    2019 – 14.8 in salary – cap hit of 19.8 million – 7 of the 14 guaranteed
    2020 – 14.8 in salary – cap hit of 19.8 million – if released, 15 million dead money saving 4.8 million
    2021 – 14.8 in salary – cap hit of 19.8 million – if released 10 million in dead money with 9.8 million freed up
    2022 – 14.8 million – cap hit of 19.8 million – if released 5 million of dead cap, freeing up 14.8 in cap space.

  47. By Darren Urban on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply

    JTDG —

    RE: Vernon

    You are right — he basically got 40 gtd, although to cut him in 2018 (with an almost-$13M salary) would leave the Giants with $12M in dead money, so he’d really have to tank to take that bath.

  48. By JTDG on Feb 15, 2017 | Reply

    Agree about Campbell, 6 million dead money in year 3 is not desirable.

    But if we are all in in 2017, a 5 million dollar hit in 2017 for Campbell certainly is.

    Think about it, in my examples; you could have Jones and Campbell in 2017 for 11 million against the cap. That leaves 30 million to sign others.
    If you follow my other two crude examples, you could have Zeitler and Gilmore for another 9 million in 2017.

    Gilmore, Jones, Campbell, and Zeitler for a 20 million dollar cap hit in 2017 with 20 million left to resign the Safeties, AQ, a ILB and rookies.

    Jones is a 20 million dollar hit
    Campbell is a 11.6
    Zeitler is 12 million
    Gilmore is 12 million

    With 100 million in cap space approx, they would only take up 56 million of it, with lots of money to sign or resign anyone.

    John Brown comes to mind, Bucannon technically has another year.

    2019 is the big year with Golden, David Johnson and Bucannon up.
    But between Iupati, Badger, and Campbell, you could have another 25 million in cap space.

    It makes sense now and it makes sense in the future. I think the experts over think things too much.

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