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GM Steve Keim: Cardinals ‘active’ in trade talks; nothing imminent

Arizona Cardinals' head coach Bruce Arians, center, supervises an NFL training session with general manager Steve Keim at the London Irish rugby team training ground in the Sunbury-on Thames suburb of south west London, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017. The Arizona Cardinals are preparing for an NFL regular season game against the Los Angeles Rams in London on Sunday. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
LISTEN: Steve Keim, Cardinals GM

The NFL trade deadline hits Tuesday at 1 p.m. Arizona time, and several teams have already made splashes.

The Seattle Seahawks bolstered their seemingly ever-struggling offensive line by acquiring left tackle Duane Brown from the Houston Texans.

The San Francisco 49ers gave up a second-round draft pick to acquire their possible quarterback of the future in Jimmy Garoppolo.

Miami dealt running back Jay Ajayi to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Will the Arizona Cardinals, who have already made a trade to land Adrian Peterson in recent weeks, follow suit?

“We’ve been active in talks,” general manager Steve Keim told Doug & Wolf Tuesday on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station. “For a trade to come to fruition there has to be so many different things that make sense, whether it’s the finances or the compensation.

“So for as often as you talk about trades — because there is a lot of conversations — rarely to teams pull the trigger because of one thing or another. So we’ll continue to work the phones, but again it’s one of those things where everything has to line up for it to work out.”

The Peterson trade Keim swung with the New Orleans Saints earlier this month sparked an immediate, albeit brief, improvement in the Cardinals’ offense. The seven-time Pro Bowler ran for 134 yards and two touchdowns in his Arizona debut, helping the Cardinals to a 38-33 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 6.

Chapter 2 of the Peterson trade book wasn’t as enjoyable a read for the Cardinals. Peterson had only 21 yards on 11 carries in a 33-0 shutout loss at the hands of the Los Angeles Rams in London — the first time the team has been shut out in the five-year coaching tenure of Bruce Arians.

While Keim has been active in talks with teams, so have other general managers who have been more ready to ‘pull the trigger’ on deals. Keim says he’s not surprised by all the action prior to the deadline.

“I don’t think anything surprises me much anymore,” he said. “And I think, that in some aspects, the amount of injuries that have occurred has, to some degree, increased the amount of trade action this year. So teams that feel like they’re heavily in the hunt are trying to fill positional needs.

“But again, it’s a dicey situation because you know a lot of times you’re trading for a player, and not only is there draft compensation involved, but then there is a specific salary or contract structure you take on, which can be difficult.”

The Cardinals, with a veteran quarterback in Carson Palmer, have been seeking a “quarterback of the future” for quite some time. Palmer is now on injured reserve with a broken left arm, and may have played his last snap in Arizona. So was Keim tempted to seek a trade for a quarterback like Garoppolo, who was stuck behind Tom Brady on New England’s depth chart?

“I would much rather draft and develop (a quarterback), if you had your way — especially a young one that you believed in because you can grow with him,” he said. “It not only helps you as a team from a salary cap structure — you’re paying a guy minimal money and you can build a team around him as far as the salary structure.

“If you trade for a player who is a veteran and has not done it on a consistent basis yet, you’re still having to pay them X-amount of money, which is scary, because whether you can put something in place contractually which isn’t long-term guaranteed, but you’re still talking about guys nowadays getting anywhere from 18-to-20 million dollars stamped based on a résumé which isn’t very long.”

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