Arizona Cardinals free agents – the best

Mar 1, 2015, 10:39 PM | Updated: Mar 2, 2015, 10:57 pm

On March 7, the Arizona Cardinals will be allowed to start negotiating with unrestricted free agents.

On March 10, they will be allowed to sign them.

Historically speaking, the Cardinals have had mild success in free agency. Like every team, they always sign at least a handful of new players. However, rarely have they gone after the “big names,” instead often times going for more moderately priced players.

Included in their haul has been players who left Super Bowl champions for Arizona (Mike Gruttadauria, Dexter Jackson), former Pro Bowl selections (Freddie Jones) and future NFL Hall of Famers (Emmitt Smith). But none of those players made the list of the 10-best free agent signings in Arizona Cardinals history.

In no particular order, here they are.

Feagles joined the Cardinals in 1994, and during his four-year run with the team he was one of the best punters in the NFL. He averaged 43 yards per kick for Arizona, and was a 1995 Pro Bowl selection. The Cardinals added the veteran Abraham just before training camp in 2013, signing him to a two-year contract. The second year was a total loss due to concussion issues, but Abraham's first season was an absolute success. He picked up 11.5 sacks and forced four fumbles, and was named to the Pro Bowl. The Cardinals had been rumored to have interest in Okeafor long before title he signed a five-year, $25 million contract in March 2005. The outside linebacker tallied 16 sacks over his first two seasons with the team, and picked up 25 over his four-year run in Arizona. The Cardinals brought the former Lion in with a four-year contract in March 1999. He went on to have four productive seasons in the desert, picking up 363 tackles to go along with eight sacks, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. Berry parlayed a breakout 11.5 sack season with the Denver Broncos in 2003 into a free agent contract with the Cardinals. He went on to post 14.5 sacks in 2004 -- earning a Pro Bowl nod -- and went on to become one of the stalwarts of the franchise's turnaround. In six seasons with the Cardinals, Berry accumulated 158 tackles, 40 sacks and eight fumble recoveries. The Cardinals didn't always have a problem at left tackle. In 1996, the team inked Brown to a three-year, $9 million contract. The 33-year-old went on to make the Pro Bowl in 1996, and was a big reason why the team earned a Wild Card berth in 1998. Is one year enough of a sample size to put a player on the list? In Veldheer's case, yes. The left tackle signed a five-year, $35 million contract in March 2014 and went on to start every game for the team, solidifying a position that had been a sore spot for a long time. The Cardinals brought in Clyde Simmons as part of their "raid the Eagles offseason" of 1994, as players went to Arizona to play for new coach Buddy Ryan. Simmons had two very productive seasons for the Cardinals, racking up 17 sacks. Signed to a four-year, $30 million contract in March 2006, James posted back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons (1,159 in '06, 1,222 in '07), while catching 62 passes and scoring 13 touchdowns over that span. His final season in Arizona, 2008, saw him lose his grasp on the starting job, but he rebounded to lead the team in rushing during its run to Super Bowl XLIII with 236 yards and one touchdown on 61 carries. Kurt Warner was signed to a one-year, $4 million contract in March 2005. The team kept him around after that, and he rewarded them by throwing for 15,843 yards and 100 touchdowns over the next five seasons, a stretch that included two postseason appearances and a spot in Super Bowl XLIII. Warner was inducted into the team's Ring of Honor last season.

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Arizona Cardinals free agents – the best