The Cardinals announced on today they reached terms on a two-year deal with a free agent tight end. But it wasn’t Jake Ballard. It wasn’t Jim Dray. It wasn’t Jeff King nor Kory Sperry. So who did they sign?
John Carlson, formerly of the Minnesota Vikings, agreed to the deal, according to the team’s website. Carlson, 29, was released earlier this week by Minnesota in the second year of a five-year contract. Last season, Carlson missed time with a concussion and even contemplated retirement.
So why did Arizona sign him to a deal for $4.65 million? Carlson missed all of 2011 with a shoulder injury and suffered three concussions in the last two seasons. His offensive statistics don’t really show much output. He had 32 catches for 344 yards and a touchdown last season as the Vikings struggled. Hopefully a steadier situation with Carson Palmer under center boosts his productivity.
Bruce Arians like his tight ends who can block first and catch passes second. Will Carlson be healthy enough to do either of them is a big question heading into 2014.
FANTASY SPIN: Carlson is going to be a free-agent, bye-week fill-in/desperation play in fantasy football. Even if Rob Housler were to get hurt or perform poorly, the Cardinals don’t utilize the tight end much in their offense. to justify having Carlson on your roster.