According to multiple sources, the Cardinals are exploring their options at running back. The team has brought in former Pro Bowl RB James Conner in for a visit. Conner finished 2020 with 721 rushing yards (4.3 ypc) and 6 TDs.
RB James Connor heading to Cardinals for a visit today. One of top free agents still on market— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) April 12, 2021
As of now, Chase Edmonds remains the lone, viable option to start at RB for this coming season. Last year’s incumbent starter, Kenyan Drake, left the club as a free agent before signing a lofty two year deal with the Las Vegas Raiders.
As for Conner, production has never been an issue for the former Steeler, as he’s averaged over 4 years per carry in each of his four seasons.
Health, however, has been an issue as he’s missed at least three games in each of the past three years.
At only 25, any potential contract for Conner will be telling. If the agreement leans on the lighter sight, it would allow Arizona to remain mix in a high draft pick to compete with the likes of Conner and Edmonds.
Think of a backfield similar to that of Baltimore with Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards and rookie JK Dobbins.
However, if Keim were to commit quality dollars (which I doubt) to Conner at this stage, it would lean that he has been their guy all along.
Regardless, the Cardinals need more capable bodies at the position and Conner is certainly young and capable.
UPDATE, per Ian Rapoport:
Ex-#Steelers RB James Conner underwent surgery to repair a very moderate turf toe-type injury this offseason, sources say, a procedure done by renowned specialist Dr. Robert Anderson. The injury incurred while riding in a recreational vehicle. A full recovery is expected in June.
I can’t imagine a Conner deal would cost more than the vet minimum.
There is also this to consider from our very own Seth Cox:
Keim loves comp picks... Wonder if Conner would have to wait til comp pick equations don’t matter or if the contract would be low enough it won’t matter.— Yup (@SCoxFB) April 12, 2021