Every season as the trade deadline looms, players around the league start to get floated around as being available. The NFL trade deadline is not as exciting as the NBA’s or MLB’s but this year there have already been a handful of trades. With the Cardinals struggling mightily, there have been reports that multiple guys have been discussed on the team. However, arguably the best player on the team and one of the best at his position recently requested a trade.
Patrick Peterson openly expressed his frustration with the direction the organization is headed and reportedly wanted to be moved to a contender. Head coach Steve Wilks immediately after the report came out and quickly dismissed it.
“We’re not trading Patrick,” he said. “That’s out of the question.”
There is not a football fan in the world who can reasonably disagree with Peterson’s reported frustration. Peterson is 28 years old and in his eighth year in the league, and at this stage of his career, he just wants to win. The team is 1-6, they have already fired a coordinator and they are starting a rookie quarterback. Winning this season or perhaps in the near future seems miles away.
Peterson met with team president Michael Bidwill this week and received assurance of the team’s direction and commitment to winning. Peterson has since released a statement revealing his commitment to the organization after this meeting and assured fans that he is and will remain an Arizona Cardinal. Cardinals fan can exhale that their team won’t be dealing the All-Pro corner, but perhaps an opportunity has been missed to acquire draft capital that could speed up the rebuild.
By the time this article is published, the Oakland Raiders will probably have acquired another first-round pick, and despite Jon Gruden and Co. getting ripped about where that team is headed, if they hit on all those picks and could be relevant again in a hurry. The Raiders just got a first-round pick for Amari Cooper, who, while extremely talented and an obvious No. 1 in Dallas, is not worth a first-rounder. The Raiders received two first-round picks, a third and a sixth when they dealt Khalil Mack to the Chicago Bears. Now Mack is a special player at a premium position in today’s NFL, but Peterson is also a special player at arguably the third most important position in football. When constructing a team for today’s game, you need a quarterback, pass rusher, and then depending on who you talk to, a shutdown corner or a great left tackle.
The Arizona Cardinals missed a great opportunity to start the rebuild with a trade of Peterson. It would obviously be hard to get rid of a talent like him, but he is not helping you win now. He has two years left on his contract, and perhaps the final year of his contract the team will be competing for a playoff spot. The Cardinals have a lot of holes and it’s not going to be a quick rebuild. Luckily, they have already drafted what they feel like is their franchise quarterback, but they need help all over the offensive side of the ball. They could also use some linebackers so both Deone Bucannon and Haason Reddick have rumored to be available for trade. It is unlikely that the Cardinals will be winning much before Peterson’s contract is up.
The Cardinals wouldn’t get the haul that the Raiders got for Mack, but some media outlets across the league seem to think they could receive a first and fourth for Peterson. That certainly sounds attainable, especially since Peterson is in the prime of his career, and the team acquiring him would have him for a few years under a reasonable contract. Peterson has done a lot of great things in a Cardinals uniform and will continue to do so, but the Cardinals should move the all-pro to speed up the inevitable rebuild