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Tuesday, May 14, 2013
2013 NFC West offseason glance: Cardinals

By Mike Sando

A look at the Arizona Cardinals' offseason to this point ...

What went right: Carson Palmer became available by trade and the Cardinals were able to acquire him for late-round draft considerations, instantly upgrading the one area where Arizona had to upgrade the most. ... Arizona had its choice of offensive guards in the draft after the teams selecting ahead of the Cardinals focused on offensive tackles and pass-rushers. Guard was the team's primary need on the offensive line. ... General manager Steve Keim and coach Bruce Arians won larger coaching and scouting staffs while also firming up plans to build an indoor practice facility. ... The Cardinals emerged from the draft with nine selections, their highest total since 2001. ... Keim and Arians gained long-term roster flexibility by clearing out unwieldy contracts and adding younger veteran players on short-term, cap-friendly deals. ... Karlos Dansby remained available at a reasonable price when the Cardinals needed options at linebacker.

What went wrong: Andy Reid accepted the Kansas City Chiefs' coaching offer without visiting Arizona after Cardinals president Michael Bidwill had expressed interest in Reid as a candidate to succeed Ken Whisenhunt ... The NFL has levied a four-game suspension against linebacker Daryl Washington. Authorities subsequently filed assault charges against Washington for his role in a domestic dispute. ... Rules preventing coaches and players from discussing football early in the offseason prevented Arians from getting a feel for Kevin Kolb in time for the sides to work out a new contract. The team might have released Kolb anyway, but Arians would have liked an opportunity to consider the Kolb option in greater depth. ... The team could not get trade value for Brian Hoyer.

The bottom line: The Cardinals are better at quarterback. They are younger throughout their roster. They are in position to improve.

Your turn: Any significant omissions here?