Arizona Cardinals

Bruce Arians and the Cardinals must strike gold in the draft.

Think about this for a second. Arizona let Pro Bowl caliber safety Tony Jefferson walk in free agency. That’s not necessarily a big deal in a vacuum. After all, Jefferson received a four-year, $34 million contract with the Baltimore Ravens (more on that here).

The issue here is that Arizona then used some of that financial capital to re-sign tight end Jermaine Gresham to a four-year, $28 million deal with just $2.5 million less guaranteed than what Jefferson received. That’s absolutely insane, especially considering Gresham himself is coming off a two-year span in Arizona that saw him catch a combined 55 passes. Welp.

In addition to this, the Cardinals lost Pro Bowl defensive lineman Calais Campbell, cornerback Marcus Cooper and tight end Darren Fells.

Remember, Arizona finished last season with just seven wins after entering the year with Super Bowl aspirations. There were widespread issues on both sides of the ball, some that have only been magnified thus far in free agency. Add in the issues at wide receiver, and there’s a ton of needs here for the Cardinals.

Technically speaking, Bruce Arians’ squad could stand to acquire upgrades at center, guard, wide receiver, defensive tackle and cornerback. That’s a whole heck of a lot of needs heading into draft season. This also makes it imperative that general manager Steve Keim and Co. absolutely ace the upcoming draft.