Updated Apr 1, 2013 - 7:00 pm
ESPN.com NFL insider: Cardinals receive a 'C' grade for free agency
To date, the Cardinals have signed 10 free agents (Antoine Cason, Rashard Mendenhall, Drew Stanton, Jerraud Powers, Jonathon Amaya, Matt Shaughnessy, Frostee Rucker, Jasper Brinkley, Yeremiah Bell and Lorenzo Alexander) and re-signed two of their own (Brian Hoyer and Rashad Johnson).
Although Arizona has made a concerted effort to make smart, short-term deals -- no player signed a contract longer than three years -- not everyone is all that impressed with the work Keim has done thus far.
In an ESPN.com column Monday, NFL insider Matt Williamson graded every NFC team's free-agency pick-ups, and the Cardinals didn't exactly pass with flying colors.
Williamson slapped a 'C' grade on Keim and Co., and only five teams in the conference finished lower in the rankings.
Through free agency, the Cardinals are better at cornerback and running back and maybe even quarterback (could they be worse?) than a year ago. But their offensive line needs serious work and now they are deficient at safety. Arizona, with a new staff in place, is looking at the big picture, got out of some tough contracts and will build through the draft to get its type of players in place.
While Williamson didn't take a huge liking to Arizona's low-risk, high-reward moves, he does admit that the team could potentially get decent value out of Cason, Powers, Mendenhall and Stanton.
Cason could flourish opposite Patrick Peterson and is sure to see a lot of passes thrown his way, and Powers should be a high-end nickel corner. Bruce Arians is very familiar with Mendenhall and should maximize his impressive abilities, and Stanton has never had a legitimate opportunity to show what he can do as a starting NFL QB. His skill set matches what Arians looks for at the position.
The Cardinals might not have hit a home run yet this off-season, but in order to compete in a division like the NFC West, it appears that Keim realizes that he must first hit singles and doubles.
Apparently that approach isn't for everyone.
Dave Dulberg, Web Content Editor - ArizonaSports.com
- Arizona Cardinals lose Tyrann Mathieu for season, maybe longer
- Bradley Sowell, offensive line bounce back for Arizona Cardinals
- What a difference a year makes for Steve Keim, Arizona Cardinals
- Arizona Cardinals linebacker John Abraham's three-sack day puts him in historic company
- Larry Fitzgerald's big day leads Arizona Cardinals to win over St. Louis Rams
- Wolf's NFL 5 Star Games - Week 14 - Friday December 6The must-see NFL games of the weekend.
- Wolf's Film Room - Friday December 6Ron Wolfley grinds film all week and shares his findings in the Cardinals-Rams match-up
- John Clayton, ESPN NFL Insider - Friday December 6The Professor provides insight into this week's NFL headlines
- Ron Jaworski, ESPN NFL Analyst - Thursday December 5A recap of the Cardinals game in Philly and what to expect against the Rams.
- Craig Wolfley, Steelers Sideline Analyst - Thursday December 5Will Ben Roethlisberger leave the Steelers?