Whole Nine Sports

2020 Arizona Cardinals Offseason Plan

Arizona Cardinals
Brandon Olsen
Follow him on Twitter @WNS_Brandon
Follow Whole Nine Sports on Twitter @WholeNineSports

Team Needs:

  CB, OT, EDGE, DL, TE, RB, LB, G

Available Draft Picks:

1.8, 2.40, 3.72, 4.111, 5.153, 6.202, 7.222

Starting Cap Space:

$51,540,295

Trades:

David Johnson Cardinals

ARI trades RB David Johnson to TB for pick 6.194

David Johnson has either been injured or irrelevant to the Cardinals game plan and he doesn’t seem to be in favor with Kliff Kingsbury. Moving Johnson to Tampa Bay reunites him with Bruce Arians and frees up over $8,000,000 in cap space for this offseason. Johnson’s inability to remain healthy and produce in this offense makes him expendable for Arizona.

Restructures:

None

Cuts:

None

Re-signings:

Cassius Marsh Cardinals
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

T Justin Murray for 1 year, $660,000 (ERFA)

EDGE Cassius Marsh for 1 year, $850,000 (100% GTD)

LB Joe Walker for 1 year, $735,000 (ERFA)

It was an easy decision to bring back Justin Murray and Joe Walker on cheap contract renewals. For the Cardinals, bringing back contributors for cheap is always a safe approach to cap management, see what you have while spending as little money as possible. Cassius Marsh struggled to find the field consistently but he is still capable of coming in off the bench and providing some juice to the pass-rush every now and then.

Free Agent Signings:

Hunter Henry

CB Logan Ryan for 2 years, $14,400,000 ($10M GTD)

TE Hunter Henry for 2 years, $23,600,000  ($15M GTD)

DT Damon “Snacks” Harrison for 1 year, $2,400,000 (100% GTD)

OL Ereck Flowers for 3 years, $10,050,000 ($4.5M GTD)

EDGE Bruce Irvin for 2 years, $11,000,000 ($7.5M GTD)

LB Tyler Matakevich for 2 years, $4,900,000 ($3M GTD)

Hunter Henry would be an immediate major contributor in this Cardinals offense. Kliff Kingsbury would undoubtedly be interested in adding another talented receiving threat to the roster, especially one who (when healthy) can put up numbers week in and week out. Ereck Flowers has had a roller coaster career thus far but has seemingly reinvented himself with the move to guard in Washington. He may never be elite, but he’s improved and could hopefully continue improving with the Cardinals.

Logan Ryan is the marquee signing who, in the slot could work with Patrick Peterson and Byron Murphy in giving the Cardinals one of the top cornerback trios in the NFL. Ryan also brings a certain level of physicality in the run game that most cornerbacks don’t bring, making Ryan the perfect cornerback signing for the Cardinals in the NFC West with players like Todd Gurley, DK Metcalf, and George Kittle. With Robert Alford missing all of 2019 and his level of play upon return being questionable, Ryan alleviates the pressure that Alford needs to step in immediately and could ultimately make Alford expendable.

The front seven is one of the primary focuses for the Cardinals by bringing in Damon Harrison, Bruce Irvin, and Tyler Matakevich. Harrison may not be what he once was, but his ability to be a run-stuffer and locker room presence could help mold this defense for the present and future. Bruce Irvin is capable of bringing in consistent pressure off the edge when he’s on the field, and playing opposite Chandler Jones should give him plenty of 1-on-1 opportunities. Matakevich will primarily contribute on special teams, but he has the ability to rotate in if the situation arose.

Draft Results:

A.J. Epenesa

Pick 1.8 – A.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa

Epenesa can move around the defensive line and stand up on the rare occasion. Going into the season, I had Epenesa as my EDGE1 and while he’s moved to EDGE2 because of a meteoric rise by Chase Young, AJE is still a phenomenal talent and in the top five on my board. A balanced defender with all-pro potential, Epenesa could be a superstar in this Cardinals front four.

Lloyd Cushenberry III

Pick 2.40 – Lloyd Cushenberry III, IOL, LSU

Cushenberry is a day one starter that immediately fills the void left by the departure of A.Q. Shipley and might even be an upgrade soon after the season starts. An intelligent center who looked fantastic during Senior Bowl practices, Cushenberry shows a lot of promise and should be protecting Kyler Murray for years to come.

Bradlee Anae

Pick 3.72 – Bradlee Anae, EDGE, Utah

Anae could thrive in this Cardinals defense playing in a rotational role. Playing opposite Chandler Jones, Anae would be put in one of the best positions to succeed as a rookie. With solid handwork and an endless motor, Anae could develop into a 8-10 sack per season defender.

Logan Stenberg

Pick 4.111 – Logan Stenberg, IOL, Kentucky

With a ton of power, Stenberg really packs a punch at the point of attack. He’s not much of a mover so I wouldn’t expect him to have to pull or run outside zone much, but he can lay into people once he gets his hands on them. Stenberg probably won’t be ready to start on day one but he likely could halfway through or after his rookie year.

Geno Stone

Pick 5.153 – Geno Stone, S, Iowa

A versatile defender that’s capable of moving around the secondary and even into a sub-linebacker role every now and then. Stone is a tough safety who can contribute consistently in the run game and can be thrown into different zone roles in a defense that likes to throw out multiple looks. Stone has to work on his man coverage to be able to be a consistent player on this defense however.

JaMycal Hasty

Pick 6.194 – JaMycal Hasty, RB, Baylor

The man I’ve nicknamed “Sweet Feet,” JaMycal Hasty has incredibly quick feet. Hasty is a solid receiver and is capable of breaking off any play for a long gain. I wouldn’t expect him to be a major contributor early on but he is definitely capable of getting some snaps immediately, especially in the receiving game.

Sean McKeon

Pick 6.202 – Sean McKeon, TE, Michigan

McKeon isn’t an overly athletic tight end but he’s got enough in him to be a contributor in the passing game. A willing blocker, McKeon isn’t going to be a mover in the run game. There’s no promise that McKeon will ever be a starter, but he should be a solid contributor throughout his time with the team.

Dominik Eberle

Pick 7.222 – Dominik Eberle, K, Utah State

Eberle was one of the most accurate kickers in college football this past season as he went 21/24 on field goal attempts. He also improved his field goal percentage every year of his college career. Eberle is completely automatic on extra point attempts as he went 167/167 in college.

Cap Space Spent on Re-signings:

$2,245,000

Cap Space Spent on Free Agents:

$32,700,000

Cap Space Spent on Draft Picks:

$9,525,545

Total Cap Remaining:

$2,426,000

Backfield

Kyler Murray Cardinals

QB: Kyler Murray

RB: Chase Edmonds

Pass Catchers

LArry Fitzgerald Cardinals

WR1:  Larry Fitzgerald

WR2: Christian Kirk

Slot: Andy Isabella

TE1: Hunter Henry

TE2: Sean McKeon

Offensive Line

DJ Humphries Cardinals

LT: D.J. Humphries

LG: Justin Pugh

C: Lloyd Cushenberry III

RG: Ereck Flowers/Logan Stenberg

RT: Justin Murray

Defensive Line

Corey PEters Cardinals

DE: A.J. Epenesa

NT: Corey Peters

DE: Zach Allen

Linebacker Starters

Chandler Jones Cardinals

OLB: Chandler Jones

ILB: Jordan Hicks

ILB: Haason Reddick

OLB: Bruce Irvin/Bradlee Anae

Secondary Starters

PAtrick Peterson Cardinals

CB: Patrick Peterson

CB: Byron Murphy Jr.

Nickel: Logan Ryan

S: Budda Baker

S: Jalen Thompson/Deionte Thompson

Special Teamers

Andy LEe Cardinals

K: Dominik Eberle

P: Andy Lee

KOS: Dominik Eberle

LS: Aaron Brewer

KR: Andy Isabella

PR: Andy Isabella

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