Jimmy G’s deal and the benefit of a drafted QB

Posted by Darren Urban on February 8, 2018 – 2:13 pm

The news broke Thursday that the 49ers were signing quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to a five-year extension worth around $137 million with hefty guarantees (I’ve seen one report of $74M, and another for $90M, so …) It isn’t a surprise that the Niners would pay up for Jimmy G, because that was inevitable once he played well down the stretch. San Francisco has lots of cap room and it would make sense to front-load a big deal, because they can absorb it (we will have to wait and see on the structure), and besides, it became clear he was definitely going to be the Niners’ long-term QB.

Now, of course, we’ll see the trickle down effect on more accomplished quarterbacks, like Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees and even Kirk Cousins as they all wait for their next contracts. But bigger picture, it illustrates the potential impact of being able to find that young (i.e. drafted) quarterback that can hopefully help you sooner rather than later, as opposed to getting one established but much more expensive. The Niners, with a ton of cap room, are likely fine for now. But it’s why the Seahawks ascended to where they were for a few years when Russell Wilson was on a rookie deal, why the Cowboys can (should?) contend with Dak Prescott on a cheaper deal and why even the Rams and Eagles are in good spots even with highly drafted QBs. Jimmy G, because his “bargain” years were used up on the bench behind Tom Brady, will never provide such a lift in roster-building.

It’s also why teams needing QBs — like the Cardinals, for instance — benefit from finding someone in the draft. Do that, and the money can be spent elsewhere in trying to create a true contender.

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68 Responses to “Jimmy G’s deal and the benefit of a drafted QB”

  1. By Ben on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    But yet Keim has sat on his hands time and time again when QBs are on the board. I keep hearing this from the organizations and from Keim and from the AZ media. But for some reason Logan Thomas was the only QB worth drafting.

    the list goes on… Until you actually draft a QB all of this is fluff and smoke. Time for Keim to put his big boy pants on and move up for a QB. Hell we have seen him do it for a Safety, why not a QB?

  2. By Jo Ball on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    I think Keim shoud give his first round pick for this year and the next in order to move up the draft. Throw in a second rounder if needed. Look what he’s done with his picks… nkemdiche, humphries, cooper, and bucanon being the best of the bunch. Would you lose sleep on losing any of these players? Give the picks to a GM that knows how to use them and go get your QBOTF. With these ridicilous QB deals, it’s the only way to compete in the NFL. There is a reason why even teams with the best QBs don’t win it all every year. Paying a top tier QB sucks up the cap and leaves major holes on the roster.

  3. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    None of the QBs in the 2018 draft are worthy of trading up for in the first round. Jimmy Garoppolo was a 2nd round pick. Russell Wilson a 3rd round pick. If Mayfield, Allen or Jackson are still on the board when the Cards pick, then they are worth a shot although our offensive line will get them killed. Oh wait, we don’t have an offensive line. That’s why I’d really like to see the Cards draft OG Quenton Nelson from Notre Dame, but he’ll likely be gone when the Cards pick.

  4. By jeffcardinalfan on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    sk hasn’t drafted a qb high because if he does and qb doesn’t work out he loses his job…its gonna take a mandate from mb to get it done…

  5. By Dr. G. on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    Also….I’m wondering if we need a star QB immediately if we can goom a guy to use the weapons he has around him…hand off to DJ, and quick out passing to minimize sacks and hurries…employing TEs, Fitz, DJ…etc.

    CAVEAT ~ beef up the O-Line…but 3 seconds can get it done. Save the bombs for the rare opportunities

  6. By Scott H on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    Yes, finding the right QB in the draft is a wonderful thing. Or, at least, I imagine it would be. Not like I’d know. About the only drought around here that compares with the Cardinals without a Super Bowl is the Cardinals NOT being able to draft the right QB.

    Gee….ya think there might be a correlation there??

    Anyway….so, the 49ers have their QB. And we know the Seahawks and Rams already have theirs. And they’re all pretty young guys. Gee, who does that leave….

    Us. That leaves us. That leaves us as the doormat for this division unless we ( finally ) find OUR QB this year. Or next.

    I wasn’t feeling this way before but I gotta say, I have warmed up to the idea of Nick Foles. Not saying he is definitely the right guy or the guy we have to have, but…..he really might be the best option out there right now. I can’t ignore how that man has played over the last two and a half games. Seemed like the higher the stakes got, the better he played. And he played about as well as any QB ever has.

    Nick Foles? Why not? Of course, that will involve the Eagles being willing to trade him….knowing that Wentz isn’t going to be ready to go in Sept next season. If I’m an Eagles fan, I don’t want Foles going anywhere right now.

    But as a Cardinals fan? I think I’m now hoping he will be an option.

    Yes, I’ve changed my mind about Foles. What can I tell ya?

    And if we’re gonna trade for him, I want the Eagles playbook as part of the deal. And Doug Pederson’s brain. I don’t know that I’ve EVER seen more masterful play-calling than his over their playoff run. Absolutely amazing.

  7. By Dr. G. on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    I’m seeing the draft as key to the future QB…period. ((Foles? Doubtful he’ll be available))

    There are numerous FA guys out there who can fill the transitional need. McCoy’s scheme is as important as the players he uses to create an effective Offense. ((TEs, Fitz, DJ, etc.))

    Again, our D will be key for our team as a whole. And STs need to step it up and get it done…sick in 2017!

  8. By El Gallo on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    – Drafting QB

    This would be great if it were to come to fruition.
    To go this route and have a young dynamic star QB.
    Major issue solved.

    It’d help coax Larry Legend for one.
    But also could help propell us into postseason contention and that’s all that really matters.

    But it all lies upon the young QB being not only dynamic, but actually good enough to accomplish all this.

    Are you really going to find one of this “caliber-potential” at the 15th draft spot selection?

    So it’d be prudent to say that SK & Co. should be doing everything they possibly can this time to move up.
    Make a leap of faith.
    Essentially putting his (SK) own career on the line and finally going for a QB they “fell in love with” that’s the complete package..

    But will he do this? Will he actually?

    As per Darren’s article it’d make sense to have a young, low cost QB.
    But one that is actually ready to play will cost you either way if you move up.

    Or we can sit, wait again and settle for a project..

    Up to SK..

    But there is no question this decision will have a domino effect immediately and long lasting.
    • Larry’s impending future
    • Offensive System-Identity
    • Supporting Cast
    • Offensive success, does it take DJ and others to next level
    • Postseason?
    • SK future and Legacy
    • Overall Longterm Organization success
    • Fan support

    It’s a fan based league. The best I’d say.
    So we want this just as much as SK & Co.
    Or else what are we doing here..

    At some point you expect SK to keep his word, pertaining to “Aggressive”.

    The faithful will always come, we won’t be happy but we’ll be around.
    But if he should fall back on his words I suspect more will be watching from the comfort of home till changes are made.

    Just saying all we want is a Quality product.
    It’d be something awesome to send Larry Legend off with a ring.

  9. By John S. on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    That’s a lot of coin… ha! Well, good for him I suppose, and the Niners for locking him up now; think he will do well there in SF.
    That said, it could get to the point a good QB just plain eats up too much cap space as a percentage of it over-all for teams; as well as hurting other players in payroll negotiations, and/or all the harder in retaining most of them period. It might be time the league and union consider placing a cap of some kind on certain key positions like QB as well, to leave more pieces of the pie to go around for all other positions or it could get really ugly down the road here. The term veteran player might become almost obsolete.. except for the better QB’s… as most everybody else a mass rotation of rookies because that’s all they can afford?

  10. By lloyd wolf on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    otis and ben…nice points….when ba made a trip to personally scout logan thomas
    it sort of took the wind out of my sails…yeah, the cannon of an arm story only goes so far with me…i have fallen into the allen trap this year since the beginning of the college season…he also has a howitzer for an arm…equally or more important is not to have hayseed between the ears.

  11. By El Gallo on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    – Larry’s decision

    He has made a few comments that seem to contradict themselves in a sense.

    His decision to stay based upon:
    • new coach selection
    • QB acquired “draft or FA”
    • now “one to 2 weeks” before FA and Draft ???

    So because of this one can come to the conclusion that promises are being made to him behind the scenes.
    You’d figure they’d have to.
    If he’s leaning towards a return.
    A plan (they mentioned as much) in place and they’ve included him in it, letting him in on the details.

    Why else would he say he was excited or looked forward to what the new offense may bring?

    But also there are no assurances to us that he’ll stay just yet.
    So here we wait..
    Here’s to hoping our teams backbone and passionate leader returns..

  12. By Richard S on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    I still remember the all star game that I recorded and watched after the draft when they talked about Logan Thomas being of nimble feet and able to move. He was sacked 3 or 4 time in his limited appearance and I was wondering why they drafted him. Oh yeah the homer, Arians old school.

  13. By creditcard on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    I remember when a $137M was a lot of money. If Jimmy G gets injured, or the league adjusts to him and the 9ers — what a waste of money.

    The Cards need to sign a vet (Stanton, Taylor, m/b Osweiler or Bridgewater, Bradford, Keenum, Siemian) somebody at a reasonable price. Draft a QB, I still think Allen will fall to the mid 1st round, or another QB in the 2nd round —

    I alsothink the Cards should stay clear of Mayfield, the guy was awful in the rose bowl — he looked like a CFL back-up.

    Spend $$ on the O-line and D-line, and draft TEs and LBs and WRs in the draft. Get a large / big body WR. .

  14. By Dr. G. on Feb 8, 2018 | Reply

    Wolf ~ yeah, the howitzer arm…just for the frequent high risk long ball stuff…could be compared to the long drive golf contestants who will never make the real pro golf tour. Managing an Offense takes a varied skill set. …really glad we won’t have that constant approach again…

    We need to see a smart QB that has some leadership skills by example and a hunger for winning. BTW ~ any decent QB can launch a 55-60 yarder…accuracy is the issue…but why on a continuum?

    Our D should be good, and Rogers says he’ll get the attention if the guys on STs right away…really needed. STs is not just a try out for a regular position; you’re an NFL player… Be well, Cards Fans

  15. By faster on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    defilippo to the vikings, doesn`t look to good for foles.

    and doesn`t look to good for us, either a very expensive mediocre qb via fa, or a very risky qb via draft.

    remembers me about witz last years ……

  16. By Lifetime Fan on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply


    I just want to note I say this with zero sarcasm and really hope we build a team around a game managing QB and save the 137 million for other positions.

  17. By Steven Z. on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    If we were “one player (QB) away from being a playoff contender, I would say go for it, but we have too many needs at OL, LB, WR, etc., in addition to implementing new offensive/defensive systems. Sign an experienced stop-gap QB and then draft the best QB you can get. To move up in the draft, trade some of the current roster: Matthew? Buchanan? Those talented players would fit a number of teams with 3-4 schemes and we would be able to accumulate draft picks. DO NOT MORTGAGE THE FARM to the tune of 25-30 million at the expense of the glaring needs we have. There’s a ton of capable free agents about to hit the market. I believe Keim is already moving in this direction.

  18. By El Gallo on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    – Turning Point

    It’s hard not to get that football itch with so little going on right now.

    Thank goodness for NFL Films.
    They currently put out a series called “Turning Point” via YouTube.

    Just a couple days ago they released an episode, The “Philly Special”.

    Very interesting to see behind the scenes of how SB LII went down.
    You get an excellent vantage point from the coaches and players perspectives.

    It is definitely worth a watch for those interested.

  19. By mitchaz on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    QB Frenzy

    If someone had told you a year ago—that Nick Foles would be the winning QB and MVP of the Super Bowl, that Baker Mayfield (even after making obscene gestures in a game versus Kansas) would win the Heisman Trophy, that Case Keenum would lead the Vikings to 13 wins and the NFC Championship game, that Deshaun Watson would hit the league by storm as a rookie until blowing out his knee, that Jared Goff coming off a miserable rookie season would lead the once lowly Rams to 11 wins and make the Pro Bowl, that Jimmy Garoppolo would be traded to the 49ers for a 2nd round pick and suddenly become the highest paid player in the NFL, that the Chiefs would jettison Alex Smith after his best season in the NFL in favor of starting 2nd year phenom Patrick Mahomes and that the G.O.A.T. and 2017 NFL MVP Tom Brady (at age 40) would pass for over 500 yards and 3 TDs/0 int. and not win the game—would you have believed any of it?

    Welcome to the newest QB frenzy of American football.

    Americans can now tune in to Criminal Minds on Wednesdays and then proceed to binge watch a 5 day weekly series called Offensive Minds on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.

    American football has become a John Daly-esque display of “grip it and rip it.”

    Where once pro coaches expressed disdain for the high scoring, wide open, spread offense bonanzas that occur on college campuses throughout the fall—now pro coaches are surreptitiously embracing the offensive frenzy of the college game—to the point of offensive coordinators sit with their QBs, slap on tapes of their college games and ask them which plays they like best.

    Suddenly—the college football version of the NBA’s “pick and roll” which is called an ROP (run-pass option) is the new rage of the NFL. This rage is changing the way NFL teams play defense. It prevents defenses from loading the box and it behooves them to insert a new breed of speedy linebackers, because these poor guys are getting picked on—literally and figuratively—play after play. RPOs have become a guessing game for linebackers—do they commit to the run option and plug the hole, thus leaving the middle of the field wide open? Or do they gamble that the QB will fake the handoff and look to pass over the middle or into the flat or up the seams to the league’s new flock of athletic pass catching tight ends?

    When QBs are a running threats—it forces teams to play zone coverages for fear that if they play man-to-man and vacate an area of the field, the QB can take off and run through 20 yards of open turf.

    The traditional saying is that defense wins championships—well, not so fast.

    Four of the five top defenses (1. Vikings; 2. Jaguars; 3. Chargers; 4. Eagles; 5. Patriots) made it to the playoffs—and in the playoffs—each of these defenses—at some point—got shredded. The Vikings gave up 62 points in 2 games. The Jaguars gave up 66 points in 2 games. The Eagles’ defense could not stop Tom Brady in the second half and fortunately were saved by a pivotal strip sack late in the game. The Patriots gave up 75 points in 3 games, including the 41 they points they surrendered to the Eagles.

    In 2018 which long-shot QBs will be this year’s versions of Case Keenum, Jared Goff, Deshaun Watson and Nick Foles?

    Teams looking for new QBs, like the Arizona Cardinals, can peruse a menu that could include (based on free agency and possible trades) Drew Brees, Kirk Cousins, Sam Bradford, Teddy Bridgewater, Case Keenum, A.J. McCarron, Tyrod Taylor, Josh McCown—and maybe Nick Foles or Jacoby Brissett.

    This gives hope to every team and every QB. Rookie QBs can take note of how Dak Prescott burst into the league as a surprise 4th round starter (pick #135). They can look at how quickly and naturally Deshaun Watson emerged as one of the more electric QBs in the league.

    Veteran QBs can hope to form a chemistry with their OCs and find their groove and comfort zone—for they too, if the chemistry is right, make a mad dash for the roses. Doug Pederson rode Nick Foles to the Lombardi Trophy in the way Red Pollard rode Seabiscuit to victory in the San Anita Handicap over the unanimous favorite War Admiral in 1940.

    Even Colin Kaepernick, the greatest long-shot of all—the pariah of the NFL—may get his shot. As crazy as this sounds—when one compares Jimmy Garoppolo’s last six game stats to Colin Kaepernick’s—check this out:

    Garoppolo: 67.4%, 1,565 yards, 7-5 TD/int., 96.2 QBR
    Kaepernick: 65.1%, 1.305 yards, 9-2 TD/int., 96.2 QBR

    From the highest paid player in the NFL to the least wanted.

    If the 2017 NFL season proved anything—it proved–that anything—is possible.

    What a story it would be if Mike McCoy—who has had to endure the humility of losing his job as head coach of the Chargers and subsequently being fired and scapegoated in mid-season by the Broncos as their offensive coordinator—could be the Red Pollard to one of the long-shot QBs in the free agent or draft class. What a thrilling, exhilarating and jubilant ride that would be. That would be one heckuva ride to cheer for.

    Let the 2018 QB frenzy begin. “Hope is a good thing, Red.” May the best long-shot win.

  20. By Big Ken on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    So Jimmy G. gets this record deal. I can only imagine the one Kirk Cousins is going to demand.

  21. By Halagator on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Cousins is too expensive for us. Why overpay for a mid level QB? I think we would be better off signing Tyrod Taylor or Teddy Bridegwater (my guess is the Vikes resign him though) and trying to draft a guy for the future.

    Draft O-line and beef up that department so we can keep whoever ends up throwing for us clean and open up holes for DJ to run through. That is where the Cards need to put the money.

    Our D will keep us in games as well, so we don’t need the most explosive offense out there, just need one that doesn’t make a ton of mistakes.

  22. By D on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    The cost of Good QB’s after their Rookie contracts is getting out of control.

    Almost makes one think, one GM will give away the Farm (future draft picks) to Indy to move up into the top 3 of the Draft this spring.

    Although, I don’t believe any of the kids coming out will be ready and all will need at least 1 to 2 years learning, hence, signing a bridge QB is needed.

    The other option could be to watch/scout L. Jackson from Louisville, he could fall back to 10-14 draft range, wouldn’t cost as much to move up from 15.

  23. By JohnnyBluenose on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    mitchaz…I do not expect Foles to be traded by the Eagles. I think Sam Bradford is available and could play well for us for a few years or longer if he can stay healthy. I would also be asking the Bengals about Andy Dalton. I am not a big fan but he has some ability and I think the Bengals may be ready to move on from him and he may relish a fresh start elsewhere. Arizona would be a good spot for him. Time will tell. The draft is only about ten weeks away. One good thing about drafting a quarterback and having him play in his first year or two is that he does not cost you a lot of money. Like you and many others I am blown away by the money teams are being forced to pay for guys like Jimmy G, Brees, Cousins, Wilson, Rodgers, Stafford, Manning and a lot of the other quarterbacks. Brady is an exception. He gives the Patriots a break so that other teammates are kept and can get paid too. That may be the only thing I like about Brady but I wish others would follow his example. I have read that the fan base of the NFL has fallen off over the last few years. Some of that has been attributed to the violence of the game and the number of concussions and brain injuries that have resulted, some of that has been attributed to the stand some of the players have taken on the racial problems that are said to exist in the USA. And maybe some people are turned off by the huge salaries that some of the players receive now. That would not surprise me.

  24. By NJAzCardsFan on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Come back to earth guys….
    Paying Garoppolo that amount is obscene. It takes away a lot of cap space to build a better team around him.
    Cousins isn’t that good or else the Redskins would have kept him and paid him what he wanted. Besides, the Cards don’t have the Cap Space to pay Cousins/Brees that amount anyway. The Cards would be better off to find a suitable QB ie Bridgewater, Bradford or Taylor etc., that is affordable. Then Keim and company can spend some money of FA O-Linemen which are sorely needed. Without a better/improved O-Line no QB is going to be really good and the running game will be non-existent like it was last season. The offense last year was dead because of the porous O-Line. Keep AP and ask him to take a pay cut!

    Has anyone noticed mitchaz has never stated that he is not Fitz…???

  25. By Scott H on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Big Ken –

    RE: Can only imagine the money that Cousins will demand after the Jimmy G deal

    I’ll tell ya what….if it’s my money, I’m paying more for Jimmy G than I am for Kirk Cousins. Any day. No hesitation. I think Cousins could end up being one of the most ridiculously over-paid players in NFL history.

  26. By Scott H on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    NJAzCardsFan –

    Damn….now that ya mention it….mitchaz has neither confirmed or denied that is or is not Fitz.

    Holy cow….think of the implications!

    But if mitchaz can be Fitz…..then can JTDG be Steve Keim?

  27. By Scott H on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Hmmmm….looking at this pic above… Jones hugging Jimmy G or was he trying to tack on another sack?

    Got that bonus $ to think about!

  28. By Chris on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    There are five teams that need a QB. This does not include Vikings, Saints, and Jags who will keep the QB they already have on the team just need to resign them. The five teams Cards, Jets, Broncos, Bills, and Browns. Three have picks in the top 6 in a DEEP QB draft with the Browns having two picks. Why would any of these teams waste 30 million on a B plus QB who will want a long contract with major guaranteed money? The Cards have close to 100 million next year and could free up close to 40 million this year if they wanted to do it. Cards are the only team that is guaranteed nothing in the QB draft and has the need and the money to sign Cousins. He would play in weather that would help a average arm QB on a team that has a fan base that would love him. Not living in the shadow of Elway/Manning or the eat your own children NY media. Warner was on this team for five year and started 2 1/2 of those years and he is a God here. Cousin just needs to come here and win 9 to 11 games a year get to some playoffs and make a NFC championship game or two and he could play for a decade and own all the records. Make it happen Kiem!

  29. By Scott H on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    El Gallo –

    I see that you found some of Fitz’ comments to be contradictory as well. Shoot, glad I wasn’t the only one. If not contradictory, they certainly were somewhat confounding.

    And, oh, what a surprise, you got all thumbs downs, too, for pointing that out! Boy….didn’t see that coming.

    But I can only look at this like this – if he is going to make his decision without even knowing who the QB is going to be…..then did the QB matter or not??? We may never really know.

    Maybe he’ll play and let us all off the hook! 🙂

  30. By Johnson on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    its still laughable that many of the comments over here feel its obscene to pay someone so much money – have you all been living in the stone age? without a QB you are not going to win championships or even win games – 49 ers now have the money to spend on players and now they have a QB = this is a QB driven league! You cant keep remaining cheap and expect to have players that will win you championships – it doesnt work like that or else we would have won a few super bowls by now

    Larry is wasting his time even deciding or thinking he might come back and play for this organization which is still clueless at deciding who the QB in 2018 will be – At this point Start DREW STANTON and draft a QB in the draft if you can. Build the O-Line, get a few more DB’s and pass rushers – more importantly can anyone in this team stay even healthy a season.

    No expectations whatsoever next season – will be lucky to win 3-4 games – With the likes of Hawks/Rams/49ers only getting stronger – its amazing that we are still trying to figure out the most important position in the roster!

  31. By Darren Urban on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Johnson —

    RE: Cheap

    Explain to me where the Cardinals are cheap? It’s a tired and false narrative.

    You want to argue they should’ve drafted a QB, fine. It’s a fair criticism.

    But the idea they don’t have one because they are cheap — or that they are a cheap franchise — is false.

  32. By JCH on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    HAHAHA Its so funny looking at all these dislikes on something that people can either thumbs up or down its all one person. They are clearing their history to thumbs down something they dont like again and again and again, its pretty funny.I mean like 17 dislikes and 26 likes the most of them have to be the same person smh…………..

  33. By NJAzCardsFan on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Darren- It may be too early to ask this question, but do you have any idea if some or all of BA’s offense will be carried over or will it be a completely new playbook from SW/MM where everyone is going to have to learn a new offensive system…???

  34. By Darren Urban on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    NJAz —

    RE: Offense

    The vast majority of plays are similar across every playbook. The terminology will likely be different, however. And how they implement the plays will likely depend on the quarterback. In short, there will be a learning curve. There always is.

  35. By NJAzCardsFan on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Scott H.
    NJAzCardsFan –

    “Damn….now that ya mention it….mitchaz has neither confirmed or denied that is or is not Fitz.

    Holy cow….think of the implications!

    But if mitchaz can be Fitz…..then can JTDG be Steve Keim?”

    Actually, I think JTDG is smarter than Keim….. If JTDG was the GM, he would have drafted a QB and a CB in the last two drafts….

  36. By mitchaz on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply


    Re: Cheap

    Steve Keim is extremely frugal, especially in his market value assessments.

    He is very selective as to which players he rewards with contracts—but when he re-signs players, he overpays them, which gives the impression that the Cardinals are willing to pay top dollar when they want to.

    The Mathieu contract was borderline insane and now it’s an albatross.

    Giving Carson Palmer $24M a year in light of his age and history of injuries was a poor decision that prevented the team from ironically building a legitimate offensive line.

    The Gresham contract is beyond all form of human comprehension.

    So, yeah, in those cases you could say that in isolated cases the Cardinals weren’t being cheap—but—how smart was it to invest that much money in injured or underperforming (Gresham) players?

    Last year’s off-season for Steve Keim who vowed to “be aggressive in FA” was a slap in the face to the loyal fans who pay good money to support the team.

    All Or Nothing quickly became All For Nothing.

    Coming out of last year’s draft without a QB was incomprehensible—what? For taking a flyer on a small school WR from Grambling (in Round 3), and a guard (in Round 4) whom they quickly cut and got nothing in return for?

    The most euphemistic term one could use to describe the Cardinals’ way of business is “passive aggressive.”

  37. By Darren Urban on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    mitchaz —

    RE: Frugal

    Again, I am not arguing those who want to question decisions made. But they are not cheap. Or frugal. You couldn’t have spent the cap money they have by being cheap. They paid Peterson, they paid Chandler Jones. They paid top dollar (at the time) for Iupati and Veldheer. I disagree with your assessment on Palmer, but I have no interest in debating it. Almost all of your arguments have nothing to do with money but rather philosophy. That’s cool. I’m sure everyone would GM differently if they had the chance.

    As for “passive aggressive,” the Cards thought they still had a window last season. Whether that was true or not, that’s why they made the moves they did. They use contract analytics to determine how much players are worth that they consider. Hasn’t worked well in some cases, obviously.

    But spare me on the cheap stuff. As I said before, it’s a tired and lazy narrative, without any nuance.

  38. By Scott H on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    NJAzCardsFan –

    RE: JTDG for GM


    Something about us NJ people….we know what we’re talking about.

  39. By Scott H on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Johnson –

    Well, if cheap isn’t a fair description of how this organization does things, then perhaps we can agree that the general handling of the QB position HAS been rather in-ept.

    Again, I don’t mean to sound as if complaining about the varied degrees of success we’ve had with Warner and Palmer. But bottom line, those were attempts to catch lightning in a bottle as opposed to truly building a team around a young QB.

    Look where we were when Warner walked away. Screwed. Leinart vs Derek Anderson in a training camp battle for our starting QB??? I repeat – screwed. That was friggin’ PAINFUL. As were the three seasons that followed Warmer’s departure.

    And look where we are now that Palmer has stepped down. Screwed again. Not even a QB under contract. How’s that for prepared?

    So, with Palmer gone, it feels like we are totally back to square one again. Meanwhile, our division mates are rounding the game board.

    So….again, maybe it’s not a function of being cheap. But I get your point, IF the point is that the handling of the QB position has not been effective.

  40. By Joe C. on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Folks forget Graves went after the best available QB on Kolb. The Cards had an all pro (well probowl) QB in Palmer. Let’s see what they do. I’m sure they’ll make a run at a FA QB thinking they won’t trade up. If they can’t get the right QB in FA then they’ll think about trading up. An average decent QB with a good defense can win it all. I’m anxious to see what they do.

  41. By JTDG on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply


    JTDG is Keim;

    Yes, you got me. Instead of admitting my mistakes publicly, I take up a fake name to admit I don’t know what I am doing. Frankly, I can’t believe I still have a job.

    I also like to ask the fans what they want by making suggestions as JTDG and then do the opposite, just to piss off everyone secretly.

    Think about it, I asked everyone who they wanted at QB, and the answer was overwelmingly for Alex Smith. So I pretended I wanted him, but really never made an offer. Man were some of you upset.

    Can’t wait to see how mad you are after I screw up the draft.

  42. By Cactus jeff on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    Darren is right on. They have been aggressive in FA. They deserve a lot of credit for spending money. They just missed too many times in the first and second rounds. I am hoping with BA gone that turns around. Give a SK a chance to call all the shots this year. I also blame BA for lot losing CC.

  43. By El Gallo on Feb 9, 2018 | Reply

    @Scott H

    – Fitz’ Comments

    Yes I did as well haha..
    But as Darren mentioned, we’re all just trying to keep up with what he’s thinking day of and answer per question.

    Still it’s a cool insight for us trying to figure out his next move.
    You make an interesting point;
    “if he is going to make his decision without knowing who the QB is going to be…..then did the QB matter or not??? We may never know.”

    That is very true, we may never know.
    I just get the feeling that at least for him to continue it’s everything..

    To have a solid QB.
    • Someone he can count on to make throws.
    But also elite level passes, the kind at critical times, when the pressure is all on the QB to do so.
    The kind of throws that get you deep into the playoffs.
    The kind that win SBs.
    • Intelligence.
    This might be even more important some say.
    Capable of deciphering own playbook, be spot on or in-line with your OC–the rest offensive pieces–and ultimately Fitz..
    Capable of deciphering the various intricate defenses that opponents DCs will bring weekly.
    Capable of standing toe to toe with a worthy opponent, sometimes a greater opponent.
    • Character.
    Able to overcome adversity & opponents strengths by breaking it down one play at a time.
    One drive at a time through sheer determination, perseverance, mental & physical fortitude-toughness, athleticism, a little lucky, joy of competition and can’t leave out joy of the game.

    Fitz isn’t asking for much haha.. (in my estimation)
    I know if I’m him, I’m waiting for someone who possesses all these qualities and attributes.
    Is it really asking for much, maybe. No, it probably is.

    But why not ask for the best, if you want to be at your best.
    Surround yourself with people who are go-getters, of quality, high regard for the game and teammates, incredible work ethic.
    Have this and something great should come of it. Surely..

    Surround yourself with average and mediocre well we know how that worked out.

    Prime example of Fitz dealing with this already are the subsequent cringe worthy years following Warners retirement.

    These same years are incredibly frustrating due so that Fitz was in his “Hey-Day” his “Prime”.
    Personally his numbers-stats suffered, the team suffered, we all suffered haha..

    In fact we could say he could’ve already been somewhat close to the GOAT WR in Rice by now. At least a hell-ova lot closer with a good QB..

    So personally I wonder, is it something that truly matters to Larry who SK & FO bring on as the next leader–QB of this team?
    I think so. I think it means a great deal, for him to continue.

    I hope Fitz returns because he has made us relevant.
    He, Warner and the 2008 Cardinals nearly brought a Championship to the Valley of The Sun.

    I say make all the moves necessary for him to do so again.
    Or unfortunately I think he doesn’t return.
    Time will tell..

    Apologies to everyone for my lengthy posts haha..
    I tend to go off a bit because I’m passionate about this great game and our team.

    But there’s no denying that Larry Legend makes us better.

  44. By mitchaz on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply


    Re: Frugal

    I get your points—I respect them even though I don’t agree with them. I bet you that the perception of the players throughout the NFL is that the Cardinals are very frugal. That’s one of the reasons why the Cardinals are not major players in FA—the players and agents are drawn elsewhere.

    What I don’t understand is the part where you justified last year’s off-season by saying that the Cardinals felt like they “still had a window”…

    If that was the case, why was the focus of last off-season on trying to accumulate compensatory picks?

    Why would Keim choose to make an old roster older? Of his 3 UFA signings only 1 had a good season (Bethea). Dawson was awful the 1st half of the season and Dansby was injured and slow and nowhere near the player he once was.

    Lastly, when you say to me, and other fans “spare me”—your disdain feels very condescending. Having heard this from you a few times from you now, I will spare you any further questions or direct comments to your posts.

  45. By Coach K on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply

    McCown makes the most financial sense as a bridge QB who can play at a high level as we draft the QB of the future.

    Fitz wants a seasoned pro at QB if he comes back. Starting a rookie most likely means Fitz retires.

    McCown to me makes the most sense as a low cost bridge QB who can still get it done. We must get serious in this draft and get our QB of the future. I like several of the top guys, but if Card’s don’t move up, then it could be Mayfield that is the guy, or we move down and take Rudolph plus get another pick.

  46. By Cardinalchris on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply

    I have been a Cardinal fan for over 40 years. For me, it’s not easy to call the Cardinals cheap, any longer. I just don’t see it. I have a lot of years to compare against. This management team is not even comparable to the management team of the Sun Devil Stadium years when I watched Plummer take us to the playoffs, beat the Cowboys and then watched the team disintegrate through free agency. Back then, team management complained about not having stadium income and this caused them to be unable to resign talented players. Was hard to accept or believe it, but to me, there is no denying there is a change in style.

  47. By Scott H on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply

    FWIW, I would say you might as well stick with Stanton if you’re at the point of considering McCown. They would both be little more than a bridge QB….heck, you may as well go with the guy who is younger. McCown has been a bridge QB for the last 10 years. Or, seemingly, for his entire career. And I think he’s been a solid QB at times. But for the Cardinals in 2018? Um….I’m hoping for better than that.

    I have actually been surprised by the number of people who have seemed in favor of rolling with Stanton for 2018. Not that there’s been a tone of them, but….heck, a few months back, you couldn’t find a Drew Stanton fan anywhere. People didn’t even want him as our back-up for 2017, let alone our STARTING QB for 2018.

    But I guess the circumstances have changed some…..

    I say roll with Stanton and draft a QB ( hopefully, the RIGHT ONE this time ) or make your best effort to obtain Nick Foles, who is young enough to be a QB of the future. Heck, as QB’s go, he is only entering his prime as we speak.

    And he already has something we don’t – a Super Bowl ring. Did I mention that this is depressing??

  48. By Scott H on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply

    JTDG –

    No, sir, you are NOT Steve Keim. For if you WERE, there is no way Justin Bethel would have been a starting CB last year. That is all the proof I need.

    Nice try.

    But…..we still don’t know if mitchaz is Fitz or not.

  49. By georgiebird on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply

    Jimmy G will prove to be a brittle QB over a 16 game season. Speaking of brittle- DJ Humphries.

  50. By Dr. G. (peace maker) on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply

    Mitch ~ ~ Your commentary in this blog has been exemplary in detail and your personal analysis is thought provoking. There are a few here that take pride in their approach to being detail fans as well. It has always been said that “”a difference of opinion is what makes a horse race.”” Respect for thoughtful opinion is important.

    As for Darren, despite efforts to be objective, it must be difficult to read the considerable critique though valid as it can be…so It can be understandable to recoil now and then. My critique on “”our shut down CB”” regardless of validity is usually met with the “”it’s personal”” response despite performance errors. It is OK to have your favorites and defend them.

    No one likes to think their guys are being scrutinized. But, in this blog, it should be acceptable to debate and discuss the results of the team or individual performance as Fans. I find no fault in your observations…and thinking Darren may want to redact a comment now and then. This has been a good blog.

    Too, history can be an excellent teacher. Looking back ((as you did)) can usually help, and those involved are served best by using history as part of the lesson plan…ignore it at your peril. Granted, Keim has all the info not available to us.

    It’s understandable that you may take offense to some comments, but please don’t stop participating…you have been an asset…just ask the others…

    Be well Mitch & Darren & Fans….. P.S. QB, O-Line & WR

  51. By Darren Urban on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    All —

    RE: Redacted

    I’ve never had a problem posting all your comments. It’s too bad some feel I shouldn’t post mine.

    The option remains for all. But I’m going to duck out now, at least for a while. I stand by everything I’ve written.

  52. By NJAzCardsFan on Feb 10, 2018 | Reply


    JTDG is Keim;

    Yes, you got me. Instead of admitting my mistakes publicly, I take up a fake name to admit I don’t know what I am doing. Frankly, I can’t believe I still have a job.

    I also like to ask the fans what they want by making suggestions as JTDG and then do the opposite, just to piss off everyone secretly.

    Think about it, I asked everyone who they wanted at QB, and the answer was overwelmingly for Alex Smith. So I pretended I wanted him, but really never made an offer. Man were some of you upset.

    Can’t wait to see how mad you are after I screw up the draft.”

    I have been a Cards fan since I was a little kid- Since 1965….
    Being a Cards fan I have been conditioned for failure….. Nothing to get mad about, just a state of constant disappointment with occasional breaks of hope.
    Then a few rare moments euphoria…. The Cards appearance in the Superbowl, a few good playoff games and the 13-3 season. It is really sad when one can name the successful QB’s of your favorite team since 1965 on one hand- Jim Hart, Neil Lomax, Jake Plummer, Kurt Warner and Carson Palmer….
    The worst Cards moment occurred when Buddy Ryan was the Coach and the QB debacle after Kurt Warner retired.

  53. By Joe C. on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    People complain the team is cheap in the same post they complain there is no cap room.

  54. By Dr. G. on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    Darren ~ ~ There are varying techniques, but no one would critize you for being a loyal homer to the team. Early on, I’ve been to way too many games nearly outnumbered by the visitors. Since the Glendale inaugural season about the time Michael took the helm, not everyone agrees on some of the player selections, but the $$$ has been there to try to field a winner…no complaints here…be well

  55. By NYCardinals on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    Wah, wah, wah
    Darren disagrees with me!!!!!

    Boo hoo hoo
    I got thumbs down on my comment.

    Suck it up, you buttercups.

  56. By Scott H on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    Wow, just saw that Fitz won his first Pro-Am golf tourney in Florida! That must be amazing for him! And I think that is really cool. I have to think the golf courses of the world will be seeing a lot of Larry when he is done his football career.

    And I wonder if this little bit of very real, very tangible success in this tourney will factor into the decision that we’re all waiting for. But I’m guessing not. Seems he loves the game of golf – and is pretty good at it – whether he’s winning trophies or not.

    Larry, you’ve got a LONG golf-playing career ahead of you. But you can only play in the NFL for a limited time during your life. Just sayin….please don’t leave any seasons on the table.

  57. By Scott H on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    NJAzCardsFan –

    Remember Timmy Rosenbach? I really beileve that kid would have been something special if he’d been able to stay healthy. That was such a shame, how his career just got snuffed out before it ever got off the ground. But I remember him and I remember him having a Russell Wilson-like ability to make plays.

    I would love to have seen what we might have been with him for a few seasons.

    And, yeah, those Buddy Ryan years were so bad….it was a shame to see even guys like Larry Centers fall under his influence of idiocy. I remember, before a Mon Night game against the Giants….who were pretty bad at the time…..the game in Arizona…..and Centers comes out and proclaims that we were are gonna blow the Giants out. And I forget the score but not only did we NOT blow the Giants out, we LOST THE GAME!!!

    And it was embarrasing. But that is the kind of effect that Buddy has on his players. He was a lousy head coach. Might have been a innovative defensive mind during his career, but a head coach, he was NOT.

    Got a winner in town? Um….no. An idiot, yes. A winner, no.

  58. By Dr. G. on Feb 11, 2018 | Reply

    Fitz gets a championship! Congrats! His partner, Streelman had the 3rd best final score for the pros for a very good payday…4 players tied for 2nd… So for a 13-handicap, Fitz had to play out of sight to help get that team win. Now off to other parts of the world…! …needing a QB now…and some O-Line!

  59. By Aaron Allery on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    There are other analytics questions the Cardinals should be focused on. They employ contract analytics? Does that include a common sense rubric? The worst fear for fans of a team is a GM that cannot build a team to give a quarterback a chance to thrive. The OL issues are egregious and outrageous. Draft the Guard from Notre Dame and get QB Mike White from WKU later in draft. He will end up being best in this draft class. Look at Memphis WR Miller. Get hungry players.

    If they are using so many analytics then they should be using them on their own job performance by creating GM and scouting performance analytics. Need better scouting on player durability and drive and interior line. Defensive scouting and picks have been very successful as well as FA signings but they have also crippled the ability to sign top notch OL.

    The Gresham effect…it speaks for itself. At his pay 12th for TEs in NFL (same as Greg Olsen basically) and only $2,000,000 less than Gronk. Led the NFL in TE penalties, ranked 23rd in catches with 2 TDs and is ranked 45th in Bleacher Report 2017 rankings. Can the Cards cut him and save on his salary? Is anyone looking at this as deadlines approach? Or make him take a pay cut.

  60. By Chris G. on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    Any chance you could write a new blog article every Friday or Saturday so we have something football related to look forward to every weekend? I’m already starting to lose it a little bit and my wife actually expects me to do something constructive on Sundays now.

  61. By D on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    R. Foster still hasn’t grown up yet. Knucklehead

  62. By JCH on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    Its super quiet around the nfl nothing new just old stories looking for anything new but there is no new news haha cant wait till i can read again!!!!!!!!!

  63. By D on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    Keim is in a tough spot. Granted, years of neglecting the QB position in the draft makes him the reason why they are in a tough spot today.

    #15 draft spot is not good for a QB when 4-7 teams ahead of them in the draft order could draft a QB. For AZ, have to hope a top 6 QB falls to 12-15 range.

    Moving up to the top 5 in the draft is way to expensive. I hear this year’s #1 and #2 round pick plus next year’s #1 draft pick. That bounty is more than AZ can afford.

    Paying Cousins more than Jimmy G, would require a few roster cuts, creating more holes for the starting lineup and doesn’t leave any $ for WR’s, OL, CB etc. (skill positions)
    Basically, turning the roster into the Redskins for Cousins. Keim would have to hit on every draft pick in Rounds 1-3 this year for contributors this year and as we all have seen in the last few years, AZ’s early round Draft picks have not contributed early and often.

    The other options are signing a QB in free agency who all have baggage:
    Bradford (health)
    McCown (health-has not played more than 13 games in a season)

    Bridgewater (health-probably stay in MN)
    Keenam (probably will stay in MN)

    Foles–the Eagles don’t have to trade him, since their starting QB probably will miss the first 3-4 weeks of the season. If Philly would trade him, they most likely won’t take less than a 2 Round pick as Comp. That is very high for Foles, probably too much, then the new team would have to pay him, at least $20mil per year, No Thanks.

    Difficult position for a new coach with the most important position a ? mark.

  64. By JTDG on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    Aaron Alley,

    No, Gresham can not be released because it will actually cost 2 million more of cap space than if you keep him. The cards are stuck with him for 2018.

    Surely, after this bad decision, his whiffs in the 2013, 14 and 2016 drafts, the horrible oline he assembled, the lack of planning for Palmers departure, and the unthinkable contract given to a guy who was injured, not to mention countless other mistakes, Keim will pay for it.

    I’m thinking he will be fired soon, MB is fed up with him and the cards will finally rid……….. wait, what? He got an extension? How? Extension? ………. Nevermind.

    Draft anyone, sign no one, does it matter ? Obviously MB is satisfied with winning 7 or 8 games and being middle of the road. Surprised they don’t just hire Jeff Fisher .

  65. By NJAzCardsFan on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    Keim (JTDG) should be happy as he just got a 4 year extension….
    Personally, if I was MB, I would have waited until the QB/O-Line situation is resolved and the draft is over…..

  66. By Scott H on Feb 12, 2018 | Reply

    D –

    RE: Keim in a tough spot

    Well, you said it yourself – Steve Keim is not in any spot he didn’t put himself in.

  67. By TucsonTim on Feb 13, 2018 | Reply

    Keim and the contract extension smacks of “same ole Cardinals”

    The Cardinal’s success in the past few years can be summed up in 2 words: Carson Palmer

    Keim can be summed up in 2 words: 2016 draft

    Dark times ahead fans

  68. By smoothcard on Feb 13, 2018 | Reply

    We can stand pat and grab Lamar Jackson or Even get our hands on a guy Like Kyle Lauletta in Rd 2. But Lamar Jackson immediately makes us dynamic offensively when paired with David Johnson and Fitz mentoring him. He’s a better passer than people realize and isnt scared of the pocket at all. He has shown the ability to scan the field and go through progressions. If Deshaun Watson was a miss then you really don’t want to pass on Lamar Jackson. He’s electric.

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