Overall Grade: C
Two months ago, general manager Steve Keim and head coach Kliff Kingsbury both received contract extensions, presumably securing their services with the Cardinals through the 2027 season. The Arizona Cardinals front office drafted like they weren’t worried about losing their jobs, making several odd decisions, and sticking closer to the “best available player” mantra than many other teams.
I understand that the front office wants to try to keep Kyler Murray happy, but that’s a dangerous game to play. If what they’ve said about Kyler Murray is accurate, and he’s self-centered and immature, then catering to his every whim might only be feeding the beast. Just because Steve Keim traded for Murray’s college teammate that doesn’t mean that the QB won’t try to force his way out of town at a later date.
Kyler Murray might even sign an extension and then force a trade to a new team once he’s secured the bag. It’s happened in the NBA and it’s becoming increasingly more common in the NFL. The front office’s job is to do what’s best for the franchise, with the long view in mind. I’m not sure that the Marquise Brown trade does that.
Then there’s the fact that the Arizona Cardinals selected Trey McBride after re-signing Zach Ertz and Maxx Williams. They probably should have let Maxx Williams walk if they were going to take a tight end with an early round pick.
Drafting Myjai Sanders after already picking Cameron Thomas was odd too, even though the front office might argue that the two players have different skill sets. Taking a corner with one of those third-round picks could have made a big difference in my opinion, but that’s not how Steve Keim and company elected to play it.
The Marquise Brown trade and the Trey McBride, Cameron Thomas, and Myjai Sanders picks will all have momentous effect on whether or not this offseason can be considered a success for Arizona. If even half of those players perform well enough to make a significant impact, the Cardinals might be going back to the playoffs for a second consecutive year. But if Arizona regresses, and fares worse than their 11-6 regular season record last year, the 2022 NFL Draft and the decisions made therein will likely be a big reason why.