ARIZONA CARDINALS

Arizona Cardinals release CB Robert Alford to open up salary cap space

Mar 10, 2021, 4:00 PM | Updated: 4:09 pm

Cardinals CB Robert Alford (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)...

Cardinals CB Robert Alford (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

The Arizona Cardinals released cornerback Robert Alford on Wednesday to clear $7.5 million in salary cap space.

Alford’s contract had a cap hit of $9 million with $1.5 million in dead money.

Arizona Sports’ John Gambadoro adds that it wouldn’t be a surprise for Alford to find his way back to the Cardinals.

Alford has missed the previous two seasons due to injuries suffered in training camp.

The move comes before the new league year triggers the free agency period on Wednesday.

Before the cut, Arizona would have an estimated maximum of $14.6 million in cap space if it signs at least 51 players to its roster for 2021, according to OverTheCap.com. That is somewhere near the median NFL-wide.

Spotrac.com had the estimated cap space figure closer to $15 million after adjusted rollovers from 2020.

The 2021 salary cap decreased from $198.2 million last season to $182.5 million due to the loss in revenues caused by the coronavirus. The NFL’s first salary cap decrease was officially locked in last Wednesday, a week before the 2021 league year starts.

Earlier Wednesday NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported the team had re-signed linebacker Tanner Vallejo to a two-year deal worth $4.3 million.

Notable Cardinals free agents include outside linebacker Haason Reddick, who was not tagged at the deadline last Tuesday. Other impending free agents include cornerback Patrick Peterson, running back Kenyan Drake, nose tackle Corey Peters, linebacker De’Vondre Campbell, right tackle Kelvin Beachum, right guard J.R. Sweezy and edge rusher Markus Golden.

Receiver Larry Fitzgerald is also a free agent but is still deciding whether to retire or play in 2021.

Arizona has the largest share of 2020 snaps taken by players who will enter free agency this offseason, according to OverTheCap.com’s Jason Fitzgerald. Forty-four percent of the team’s total snaps could be lost in free agency.

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