Should the Arizona Cardinals keep Larry Fitzgerald, trade him or *gasp* cut him?
It’s time for the $18 million question that has no easy answer as we examine the wide receivers of the Cardinals. This group is going to be one of the toughest to make decisions on for the coming year. Let’s start by taking a look at the numbers from Spotrac.com
Fitzgerald. $18 million cap number, $12.75 million base, $2 million bonus, $3.275 million other $10 million dead money.
Michael Floyd: $2.719 million cap number, $1.297 million base and $1.423 million bonus; $5.89 million dead money
Andre Roberts: UFA
Jaron Brown $498,000 salary; $6,000 dead money
Britton Golden $572,168 salary; $2,168 dead money
LaRon Byrd $572,168 salary; $2,168 dead money
Teddy Williams $570,000 salary, $0 dead money
For this one, we’ll work from the bottom up. Keep in mind that the top 51 contracts make up the cap figure.
Williams, Golden and Brown were all rotated in to try and fill the fourth wide receiver spot. None of them really stood out and grabbed the role. It also looks like nobody is grabbing a big paycheck for doing it either. This looks like it will be a good competition for the fourth (and maybe third) wide receiver slot on the team. For now, we keep all four of them and let them fight it out. If someone needs to go in free agency, any one of them would be cuttable should Arizona bring in a big-name wide receiver.
Roberts looks like someone who won’t be on the roster next season. He had several games when he was invisible on the score board. He had 471 yards and two touchdowns this season. He went over the 50-yard mark three times in 16 games and didn’t miss a game due to injury this season. Roberts was lost behind Floyd and Fitzgerald and will be on someone else’s roster in 2014.
Floyd went over 1,000 yards this season and had five touchdowns on 65 catches. He looks like he will be a solid contributor for years to come and will only get better as he goes into his third season in the league in 2014.
So what about Fitzgerald?