This is great news for all parties involved: Larry, the Cardinals, Steve Keim and fans.
The Cardinals get the relief they need this offseason and suspend Larry's contract issue until 2015 (when the process will begin all over again). But I would not worry about tomorrow, today brings enough challenges to a team playing in the NFC West and there are so many things that could happen over the course of a year. With other moves certainly on the horizon, Steve Keim and Co. have created a free agency purse and are looking to dump more coin in it.
Keim continues to get it done. He did not sign Larry Fitzgerald to the contract he's currently under and yet he chalks up another victory and avoids an ugly dispute with a marquee player, fan favorite and future hall of famer. This offseason could have turned into a Nightmare on Fitzgerald Street scenario, but now the point is moot in 2014. Keim is smart and capable and has proven himself to be a persuasive GM, something general managers need to be in the era of one-year contracts and restructuring player deals.
Larry is such a class act. I'm not surprised he restructured but he didn't have to. The Japanese Fighting Fish wants to win. He knows the Cards have guys they need to get done (Karlos Dansby, eventually Patrick Peterson and maybe a free agent LT). But the relationship between Fitz and the Cardinals will be tested in 2015 when his cap number soars to almost $23 million! That kind of green air is typically reserved for franchise QBs.
This restructuring almost guarantees Cardinals fans that Larry Fitzgerald will not be traded. And Larry knows it. By accepting a check for over $11 million dollars now, where it can be prorated over the life of the contract as a bonus, Fitzgerald knows he isn't going anywhere. Fans win, Larry wins, the Cardinals win and future free agents win.
Let's hope all these "wins" turn into wins.
Ron Wolfley, Co-host of Doug & Wolf
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- Steve Keim, AZ Cardinals GM - Friday June 20Keim discusses his players progress so far and his anticipation of future signings.