Patrick Peterson is arguably the top cornerback in the NFL and the Cardinals team captain. Hopefully he doesn’t ask for a trade again and he’ll remain on the team for, at least, the remainder of his contract. The team needs to be trending in the right direction if the Cardinals want keep him happy. But for now, he looks committed in being part of the solution.
Beyond Peterson, the position looks kind of murky.
Brandon Williams struggles to learn how to be a cornerback and poor special teams contributions has hurt this team greatly. Keim has to man up to his mistakes and admit that he was a reach. Williams will likely be gone after the season. The Cardinals acquired Jamar Taylor from the Browns but he has failed to live up to expectations. He’s a candidate to get cut, saving the team $4.35 million in cap space in 2019.
Bene Benwikere has exceeded expectations but is scheduled to hit free agency as well. If Steve Wilks remains the head coach, expect Benwikere to be brought back due to his familiarity with the system.
The Cardinals really like the potential of Deatrick Nichols. His ability to get to the quarterback in blitz packages and speed to run toe-to-toe with some of the faster receivers in the NFL is impressive. But he’s still raw but has plenty of room to grow.
I honestly would not be surprised if the Cardinals drafted a cornerback with their potential top-10 draft pick next season. They have neglected that position for quite some time and it’s about time they find that long-term solution opposite Peterson. DeAndre Baker and Greedy Williams are the top college cornerbacks in college football. Both are projected to be top-10 picks in 2019. The Cardinals defense would benefit greatly from drafting either of the two, giving the team a second shutdown cornerback.
There will be some interesting names scheduled to hit free agency.
This list includes Ronald Darby, Morris Claiborne, Brent Grimes, Jason Verrett, and some other good cornerbacks as well. If Steve Keim remains the general manager, he has to make a stronger effort in acquiring better players. He needs to improve his evaluations of talent as well. Another bad draft and offseason will send Keim and Wilks packing. It’s possible that their time as a Cardinal will end at the conclusion of the 2018 season.
Let’s see what happens!