The Arizona Cardinals have long had a reputation for being cheap. That reality has changed over the past several years, namely with the move to University of Phoenix Stadium. They have paid a lot of money to players. They made Ken Whisenhunt a very wealthy coach. They ate his salary and Rod Graves' contract in firing them.
However, a recent report by Pro Football Talk seems to imply that the team's perhaps frugal ways are back.
According to the article, "rumors are making the rounds that Steve Keim will be making roughly $750,000 as the Cardinals' new G.M., which would make him the lowest-paid general manager in the league."
(Cue readers screaming about the Bidwills)
Now...before you actually go crazy, it is nuts to think that money wasn't a factor in hiring a new GM. Money is always a consideration. However, why wouldn't Keim be the lowest paid GM in the league? He is also the least experienced. He has accomplished the least at the position (nothing yet). Being paid the least makes sense. In fact, if the team threw a lot of money at him unnecessarily, you would have to wonder about how the team does things as a business.
Was money the reason why got the job? I doubt it. He is a man whose insights have been well respected by Michael Bidwill and others in the organization.
Clearly, the team had Keim in mind from the start. The only other man they interviewed for the position was Morocco Brown, and that met the requirement of the Rooney Rule. They had to interview someone.
The PFT report also implies that money could be the sticking point for the head coaching position. That doesn't really make sense.
If money were the issue, Ray Horton would already have been hired. He will command the least amount of money. Plus, they never had a chance to make an offer to Mike McCoy. With Andy Reid, it was more about control more than anything else.
Are the Cards being cheap? Other than paying a brand new GM less than all the other experienced ones around the league, there is no evidence of that these days.
Mike Jurecki refuted the PFT report and Fox Sports Arizona's Craig Morgan also confirmed that with a rock solid source, he tells me.
NFL source Cards GM Steve Keim is making ovr million dollars per year, he signed a 3 deal w/ the Cards last week, PFT report was inaccurate— Mike Jurecki (@mikejurecki) January 16, 2013
League source: Reports that #Cardinals Steve Keim is NFL's lowest paid GM are incorrect, as is his reported salary (750K). Makes > than $1M.— Craig Morgan (@cmorgancbsfoxaz) January 16, 2013
It turns out that Keim is making a salary comparable to what Graves was. Good job, Cards.
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