Grading Cardinals Free Agency Moves

Deandre Hopkins:

Grade A+

Deandre Hopkins is easily a top 3 wide receiver in the NFL year in and year out.  Not only did the Arizona Cardinals receive one of the best wide receivers in the NFL but they also got rid of David Johnson and his massive contract for a second round pick.  With the Buffalo Bills paying a first, fourth, fifth, and sixth round pick for Stephon Diggs, this was highway robbery. Receiving Hopkins almost assures fans that the Cardinals will look for an offensive linemen instead of a receiver in the draft.  Hopkins has earned 1,000+ receiving yard five of the last six years and has shown no sign of slowing down.

DeAndre-Hopkins

 

De’Vondre Cambell:

Grade B

De’Vondre Cambell could easily be the best sneaky sign of free agency.  Last year De’Vondre Cambell recorded 129 tackles and two interceptions. Although De’Vondre Cambell allowed a QB rating of 101.0, he is able to rush the QB, stop the run, and intercept the ball.  Campbell is a well rounded Outside Linebacker who will fit in perfectly for the Cardinals. The Atlanta Falcons will definitely miss him next year.

 

Jordan Phillips:

Grade C+

Jordan Philips is by far the biggest gamble the Cardinals have taken so far.  This will be Jordan Phillips third team and his 7th year, and has only performed average or better one year, and that was during his contract year.  The Defensive Tackle Jordan Phillips had 9.5 sacks last season whereas his previous high was 2. If the Cardinals can get 9.5 sacks out of him again, then Jordan Phillips would easily be graded a B but more than likely will get between 3-5 sacks.  The Buffalo Bills also sold on the run and aggressively attacked the pass. They were ranked fourth from worst at stopping the run which is a concern for Jordan Phillips in a division that runs the ball a lot.

 

Devon Kennard:

Grade C-

Devon Kennard was the outside linebacker for the Detroit Lions last year.  Devon Kennard had his best game last year week one against the Cardinals when he recorded three sacks.  This may be the most questionable signing this year. Kennard allowed a QB rating of 124.5 when the QB threw to his side which is way worse than average.  Out of the thirteen passes that went his way he allowed 11 completions and two touchdowns. Kennard is not the best run stopper either in a division with the Seahawks, 49ers, and Rams.  Cardinals are paying him 6.6 million a year for the next three years so hopefully they see something in him that fans don’t.

 

Max Garcia and Marcus Gilbert

Grade C

These two signings just stacked the offensive line room with depth, and the team can now go in any direction in the draft. The Cards O-line was not bad last year, in fact they were getting better the last 5 to 6 games of the season. Quarterback Kyler Murray did take 48 sacks on the year but it’s safe to say he was responsible for a good percentage of those sacks by holding on to the ball too long and running backwards trying to make plays.

Signing Garcia and Gilbert for depth is a smart move, Gilbert coming off a season ending injury will get the opportunity to prove he has something left in the tank. In fact, Gilbert was playing very well in training camp and looked the part of a solid starter. It was said that Garcia was at one point the best lineman before his injury, so both these guys will make an impact out of the gate.

The entire Cardinals o-line has something that is very valuable to any teams offensive line, and that’s experience in the current system. All of the lineman have been in the Kingsbury system one year or for some in training camp, so there will be no learning curve and the entire unit has some continuity to start fast in 2020.

 

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