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Nobody will ever doubt Larry Fitzgerald's importance to the Arizona Cardinals.

The team's best player, No. 11's presence makes life easier for everyone, from the QB to fellow receivers.

Keeping him around for the next eight years, though, has more than just on-field ramifications.

"I just think it sends a message to our team about the importance of this season and what we are trying to do as an organization," Cardinals Head Coach Ken Whisenhunt told Sports 620 KTAR's Doug and Wolf Monday. "I think Michael Bidwill certainly sent that message when we were as aggressive as we were in free agency as far as making moves, trying to make our team better."

Whisenhunt said it shows the team will follow through on its promises, from upgrading the overall talent to keeping the great ones in town.

"It builds excitement for us for the season," he said.

That it does, and any fear Cardinals fans had about Fitzgerald possibly playing his farewell tour this year can officially dissipate, as the Pro Bowler will be in Cardinal red for the long haul.

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