As we continue to get hyped up for the NFL Draft in April, one thing we have to keep in mind is that free agency comes first. The market opens for players to move around on March 12th and it will undoubtedly change how teams approach the draft.
One of the positions that the Cardinals desperately need to address outside of the quarterback and their offensive line is outside linebacker. Sam Acho and O'Brien Schofield have not proven to be consistent pass rushers that can get to the opposing quarterback. That is why Steve Keim, Bruce Arians and co. may look at bringing someone else in.
According to Mike Jurecki of XTRA 910, that someone could be former Chargers linebacker, Shaun Phillips.
It is important to keep in mind that the tweet says Phillips has interest in the Cardinals, but makes no indication that the Cards have interest in him. Still, they may consider bringing him in for a look given his track record over the years.
Here is why I am completely against this possible signing: Phillips is the second coming of Joey Porter. His skills have been on the rapid decline over the past few years. Last season, he started every single game with the Chargers and collected a mere 39 total pressures in 428 pass rushing attempts, according to Pro Football Focus. That equates to one pressure per eleven pass rush attempts. For comparison, Sam Acho had almost the exact same ratio. Were you satisfied with his performance last season? Now take into account that Phillips will be 32 at the start of the season with no room left to improve.
The Cardinals need to draft their next premium pass rusher or find someone that at least has some good years of football left. Free agent linebackers Paul Kruger, Connor Barwin and Anthony Spencer come to mind. Each of them are under the age of 30. They were also each graded significantly higher than Phillips by PFF.
So Phillips may want the Cards, but let's hope that they don't want him.
What do you think? Should the Cardinals go out and sign Shaun Phillips once free agency begins? Tell us in the comments section below and vote in the poll.