If we have to pick three needs the Arizona Cardinals should focus on this offseason we probably all could agree that they would be the quarterback position, the offensive line and the pass rush. Pro Football Focus agrees, as they give those three things as the team's greatest offseason needs.
The article gives a possible free agent target that could help shore up the positions of need and keeps in perspective the team's salary cap issues. Since the Cards are pretty tight against the cap right now, the suggestions are subtle and are not flashy.
At quarterback, they suggest Matt Moore rather than targeting a guy like Alex Smith who could hit the free agent market.
So what about bringing in the underrated Matt Moore for a quarterback competition? Moore isn't the long-term answer, but go back to 2011 and see how he played. He was ninth in our quarterback rankings despite starting the season off the bench, and made some big time throws. It's hard to see either man winning you any championships, but why not save some money and give him the chance to compete.
For the pass rush, they recommend someone under the radar, a guy they would have to project into productivity. Their cap situation probably keeps them out of bidding on Anthony Spencer or Paul Kruger. PFF suggests Victor Butler.
Instead, how about looking at another Cowboy and be the team that gives Victor Butler a chance to start? Butler was asked to play 300 snaps for the Cowboys this year and really impressed, with some strong work in the run game and generating pressure at a decent rate. Since an ineffective rookie year in 2009, the former fourth-rounder has graded positively every year for his pass rush, so why not take a chance on him? Of course there's no guarantee, but when you have little money to work with and a depleted market you've got to do a bit of projecting with guys.
Step forward Geoff Schwartz. He was penciled in as the Vikings starting right guard until injury saw him miss his chance, serving only in a rotational role as the season progressed. As he did in 2010, he excelled and is too good a player not to upgrade the guard spot of some team. His ability to play tackle in a pinch can't hurt either and he'd be a big upgrade to a team in desperate need of it.
Moore at QB has been brought up more than once. He might actually be a decent fit. As for the other guys, I'll be honest. I asked myself, "Who?"
Do you like these understated picks for the Cards?
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