Why Cardinals will miss Richard Marshall

March, 14, 2012
3/14/12
10:56
PM ET
Patrick Peterson commanded the most attention among Arizona Cardinals cornerbacks last season.

That was natural for a rookie drafted fifth overall. Scoring touchdowns four times on punt returns also helped Peterson command the spotlight.

There was far less fanfare for veteran corner Richard Marshall. A team news release announcing Marshall's signing carried the stock title, "Cardinals make roster moves." Marshall's addition shared an introductory sentence with the release of Da'Mon Merkerson and the signing of rookie free agent Tae Evans.

Far more notable was Marshall's departure from the team via free agency Wednesday. Marshall, who agreed to terms on a three-year deal with Miami, played nearly three-quarters of the defensive snaps for Arizona last season. He was also a regular on special teams.

"He's a very good veteran football player that understands the game, understands how to prepare," coach Ken Whisenhunt said of Marshall in November. "He's a great example for our younger players with his toughness and his attention to detail. He works at it and that’s what you want."

The Cardinals also valued Marshall's versatility.

"Flexibility of what we're asking him to do is something that has tremendous value for us," Whisenhunt said. "To play outside, to play in the nickel, to play some back at safety, which he's done, all those things, that’s not easy. It takes not only ability, but it takes a mentality to be able to do that and that’s important to your team."

Marshall played last season on a one-year deal for $3.5 million.

The Cardinals' current cornerbacks include Peterson, A.J. Jefferson, Michael Adams, Marshay Green, Korey Lindsey and Crezdon Butler. Greg Toler, a restricted free agent tendered to a fourth-round choice, is returning from injury.

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