I want Branden Albert to be an Arizona Cardinal in 2014 and beyond. And I reject myself before king and country for saying this.
Kansas City's LT has a good chance of hitting the free agent market because his play has been spotty -- until last season. His inconsistency is one of the reasons why the Chiefs may be willing to let him walk; it's why they drafted Eric Fisher with the #1 pick in the draft last year. Fisher was going to replace Albert. And it looks like that is going to be the case in this season.
Free agency has not and will not be the panacea most NFL GMs thought it would be. It's inherently flawed by the whims and weaknesses of human nature and what piles of gold tends to do to human beings. Money, typically, doesn't improve one's character or make them try harder at their job.
I know this and it's why free agency has been such an abject failure. And I still want Albert.
I'm willing to take a one-time-free-agent risk on Albert because even though I will overpay for his services he fixes a serious problem for the Cardinals AND he allows Steve Keim, General Manager for the Arizona Cardinals, to walk into the War Room on draft day and be true to his convictions and draft philosophy: draft the best player available.
What a luxury this truly is for a general manager! To actually do what you spew.
Carson Palmer has brought some stability to the quarterback position. The best thing that came out of the Cardinals 10-6 season was that they were going to be able to step into the 2014 NFL Draft without having to reach on a QB. If Keim could now sign Albert and solidify the LT position on this team, he would have the luxury of taking the highest rated players on their board, knowing their glaring needs have been addressed.
It wouldn't surprise me if Steve Keim is standing at Branden Albert's door at 4:01 PM Eastern on March 11th. But it does surprise and disappoint to find myself standing on Albert's "welcome mat" with him.