The Arizona Cardinals were expected to be one of the best teams in the NFL before the season began, but injuries and poor play from several key players ruined their year. The biggest problem for the Cardinals was the offense getting bogged down by the declining play of Carson Palmer. Since they clearly have the talent to compete next season, the Cardinals are expected to address the quarterback position in the offseason. These are the four most likely starting quarterbacks for the Arizona Cardinals during the 2017 season.
While Carson Palmer is clearly near the end of his career, he is still the most likely starting quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals in 2017. Palmer is under contract through the end of the 2018 season, so the Cardinals will be forced to keep him on the roster if they want avoid a huge salary cap problem. It will be much easier for Arizona to cut ties with Palmer after the 2017 season, so he may get one more season to prove he can be a starting NFL quarterback. The Cardinals were encouraged by Palmer's play at the end of the season, so they will likely let him start the 2017 season as the starter. If he struggles early in the season, then they make a change at the position.
The Cardinals can make an instant upgrade at the quarterback position by getting Jimmy Garoppolo in a trade with the New England Patriots. The trade will cost Arizona their top pick in the 2017 draft, but it remains to be seen if New England is willing to trade Garoppolo. Making this trade will also remove the risk of selecting a young quarterback in the draft because Garoppolo has proven he can be a successful quarterback in the NFL.
If the Arizona Cardinals are unable to make a deal with the New England Patriots, then they will likely select a quarterback in the 2017 NFL draft. The Cardinals have the 13th pick in the draft, so they will likely miss out on Deshaun Watson and Mitch Trubisky. DeShone Kizer of Notre Dame is the only other quarterback worth taking with the 13th overall pick, as he is one of the best prospects in the entire 2017 draft. Kizer is leaving school after his sophomore year, so he is still very young. While DeShone Kizer may be a great choice to be the quarterback of the future for the Arizona Cardinals, Carson Palmer would have to get injured to make him the starting quarterback in 2017.
Bruce Arians has expressed his desire to work with Jay Cutler numerous times, and he may get his wish next season. Cutler likely will only end up in Arizona if the Cardinals decide they want to move on from Carson Palmer. This move would give the Cardinals a decent quarterback that can start for a few years while they develop a young player at the position. Tony Romo would also be another candidate for this plan, but Cutler's age and injury history make him a better choice.