Free agency will begin for the NFL on March 11, with teams able to contact player agents beginning March 8. That is when things start moving quickly.
MMQB looked at who they believe are the top 100 players available in the free agent market and, for five of them, Arizona would be the best fit.
Starting at the bottom, outside linebacker Mike Neal is at number 95. It has previously been reported thatthe Cardinals will have interest. Neal is a "very intriguing prospect after starting career as 294-pound 3-4 end." The site believes that Neal would be a "low cost/high reward" player for the next team that signs him.
Next up, ranked as the 60th best free agent is tackle Anthony Collins, who would fit best in Arizona. Collins, after long being a backup, "proved he can play both sides well and might be too expensive" for the Bengals to keep him around. He could be "good bang for the buck" for the Cardinals.
A few notches up, at number 57, is running back Maurice Jones-Drew. He already has come up as an "interesting" replacement for Rashard Mendenhall, who perhaps is retiring. MJD "showed he still has more in the tank" last season, even with career lows in yards per attempt, as it did come with no offseason work. According to Bedard, who wrote the article, Jones-Drew "would make a great tandem with speedy Andre Ellington."
Tackle Branden Albert is ranked as the seventh best free agent and fits best with the Cardinals. "Teams needing a left tackle will be lining up" for him, as they "view him as a more proven commodity at this stage." Arizona hasn't had a decent left tackle since L.J. Shelton or maybe even Lomas Brown.
What do you think about the fit of these five players. Personally, aside from the prospect of a viable starting left tackle, Jones-Drew is the most intriguing, but mainly because Arizona is lacking a veteran in the running back room and he should be an upgrade over Rashard Mendenhall.
How many of these players do you think will end up signing with the Cardinals?
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