The Arizona Cardinals reportedly are not interested in trading for running back Adrian Peterson due to his exorbitant salary.
The Arizona Cardinals could easily convince themselves that they’re one more offensive star away from being a Super Bowl contender in the 2015 season. After an unfortunate string of injuries plummeted the Cardinals from the best record in the league to a wild card loss in the playoffs, the team has been tied to plenty of trade rumors. Those involving running back Adrian Peterson, however, appear to be unfounded, per Peter King at The MMQB.
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"“I spoke with a reliable Cardinals source Sunday night, and the three years and $45 million left on Peterson’s contract is an absolute non-starter with the Cards. ‘We haven’t had contact with the Vikings about it, to the best of my knowledge,’ the source said. ‘And there is no way we could live with those numbers. We just got Larry Fitzgerald’s contract under control. No way we’d add that salary.'”"
King also notes that the Cardinals ‘love’ this year’s running back class in the draft and could use one of their picks in the first two rounds on a back who would come a whole lot cheaper and a whole lot younger by NFL standards.
The Cardinals produced the second-fewest rushing yards in the league, but that’s a tough figure to evaluate because the team sported a barren situation at quarterback once starting quarterback Carson Palmer and his backup Drew Stanton each went down with injury. Defenses shut down the Cardinals rushing game once Ryan Lindley and company took the field. A reactionary might say the position needs an infusion of talent, and they might be right, but not at the price the team would have to pay for Peterson.
With so much money already tied up against the cap, it would be a fool’s errand for Arizona to spend a draft pick or more in a trade plus take on a huge cap hit to acquire a 30-year-old running back in today’s NFL. Especially when that club is as deep and balanced as the Cardinals.
Instead, expect the Cardinals to seek a cheap veteran to fortify their running back position before cashing in a draft pick on another option this May. The team can bank on getting most or all of the production they’d get from Peterson for a fraction of the price.
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