ARIZONA CARDINALS

The Athletic: Cardinals S Budda Baker’s contract situation a storyline to watch

Jul 4, 2024, 11:31 AM | Updated: Jul 8, 2024, 4:15 pm

Budda Baker...

Budda Baker #3 of the Arizona Cardinals celebrates as he runs off the field after defeating the Dallas Cowboys 25-22 at AT&T Stadium on January 02, 2022 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images)

(Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images)

Arizona Cardinals safety Budda Baker will enter his eighth season in the NFL in 2024 as the longest-tenured player on the team after the release of tackle D.J. Humphries.

Baker will also be entering 2024 in the final year of a four-year contract that he signed in 2020.

The Athletic’s Doug Haller lists Baker’s contract as a storyline to watch out for in 2024.

There’s no mistaking the heart and soul of the Cardinals. It’s Baker. He’s been an organizational fixture since he was drafted in 2017, a six-time Pro Bowler. When healthy, he’s still among the best at his position, a force on the field and a respected voice in the locker room. And he’s only 28.

With Baker becoming an unrestricted free agent at the end of 2024, his status in the desert will become a key storyline. Baker, with a base salary of $14.2 million, said during OTAs he wants to be a Cardinal but understands it’s a business.

How does Baker look going into the 2024 NFL Season?

Baker will look to bounce back from a 2023 season that saw him miss five games due to a hamstring injury. Across 12 games, Baker made 87 total tackles. He did not have an interception for the first time since 2020.

Despite the injury, Baker made the Pro Bowl roster for the sixth time in his career. He was the only Cardinals player to be named to the 2023 Pro Bowl roster.

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