Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Cards most active NFC West team
By Josh Weinfuss
TEMPE, Ariz. – The Arizona Cardinals been busy since free agency kicked off on March 11.
The Cardinals' four singings have tied the San Francisco 49ers as the busiest team in the NFC West during the past eight days. Add in the John Carlson signing and the Cards' five additions top the division.
The least busiest? That's easy. The St. Louis Rams haven't signed one free agent this year, although they were part of the most dramatic half hour of free agency after Rodger Saffold failed his physical with the Oakland Raiders and his contract was subsequently voided leading the Rams to re-sign him.
There's still plenty of time for the Niners, Seattle Seahawks and St. Louis Rams to play catchup but for now, it looks like the winds in the division might be shifting a little southerly out of Seattle. The defending Super Bowl champion Seahawks lost eight starters -- 36 percent of their starting lineups -- including wide receivers Golden Tate and Sidney Rice, and defensive backs Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond. Turnover is inevitable every offseason but eight starters is a lot to replace.
Comparatively, the Cardinals lost five starters thus far, the Niners lost four and St. Louis lost one.
But the Cardinals and Niners have been the busiest. Arizona has been filling specific needs, bringing in most notably left tackle Jared Veldheer and wide receiver Ted Ginn, and San Francisco has been replacing important losses. The Niners signed former Indianapolis safety Antoine Bethea -- who'll get to play against former interim head coach Bruce Arians twice a year -- and cornerback Chris Cook.
While the Seahawks have signed two players, neither played a snap last season.
Then there's St. Louis, who hasn't inked anyone.
Maybe it's strategic. Maybe it's bad luck. Or maybe it's just not finding what they're shopping for. Regardless, half of the NFC West has been busy while the rest are figuring out their next move.
Here's a look at the comings and goings throughout the NFC West.
Signed: Jared Veldheer, LT, Oakland; Ted Ginn, WR, Carolina; Jonathan Dwyer, RB, Pittsburgh; Ted Larsen, G, Tampa Bay; John Carlson, TE, Minnesota.