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Arizona Cardinals Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Fantasy Football News 2024

Most Recent Fantasy Football News & Updates

The Cardinals released RB Corey Clement. It's confirmation that Keaontay Ingram has won the No. 2 RB job behind James Conner. Ingram is worth a look near the end of deeper fantasy drafts.

The Cardinals will keep QB Kyler Murray on the physically unable to perform list to open the regular season, according to multiple reports. That's no surprise, as Murray continues to work back from a November ACL tear. He'll miss at least the first four games. We've had Murray projected to miss five games all along in your fantasy football rankings. The Cardinals are also releasing QB Colt McCoy. That'll mean it's either rookie Clayton Tune or newly acquired Josh Dobbs starting for Arizona over the first month. We'll see who wins that post between now and Week 1.

Cardinals RB Marlon Mack has torn his left Achilles' tendon and will miss the season. It's his second time dealing with such an injury. Mack tore the right Achilles' in Week 1 of 2020. The latest injury seems likely to end the 27-year-old's NFL career. He has logged just 44 total carries since the 2020 tear. Don't be surprised if the Cardinals look to bring in another veteran RB.

The Cardinals signed RB Marlon Mack. Since tearing his Achilles in September of 2020, Mack has totaled just 185 yards on 44 carries. Arizona has only RBs Keaontay Ingram, Corey Clement, and Ty'Son Williams behind James Conner, but Mack still isn't guaranteed a roster spot. He's not worth a roster spot in fantasy football.

Cardinals QB Kyler Murray said Saturday that he was a fan of WR Michael Wilson before the team drafted him. "I saw what he did at the Senior Bowl ... I like his releases, I liked how he moved. His one-on-ones at the Senior Bowl looked good," Murray said. "I was already fond of him before we drafted him." Wilson has gotten some buzz early in training camp and is already getting first-team reps. The rookie has a chance to be a factor this season, especially when Murray gets back on the field.

ESPN's Josh Weinfuss reports that the Cardinals have added bonus money and incentives to S Budda Baker's contract. The veteran requested a trade in the offseason. This pay increase should solve any lingering issues for 2023. His deal runs through 2024 but doesn't appear to have any guaranteed money left in that final season. We'll see whether this is Baker's final year in Arizona.

The Cardinals are placing QB Kyler Murray on the PUP list to open training camp, to the surprise of absolutely no one. Murray, of course, is working back from a Dec. 12 ACL tear. The main question on him for 2023 has been just how much regular-season time he'll miss. We'll continue watching for more insight on that.

The Cardinals will be signing TE Geoff Swaim, according to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. Swaim -- who will turn 30 on Sept. 16 -- spent the past three years in Tennessee, after one with Jacksonville and four in Dallas. He caught just 12 passes last season, despite leading Titans TEs in playing time. Swaim caught a career-high 31 balls the year before and has reached double digits in just four of eight seasons. His arrival in Arizona could just mean early insurance against Zach Ertz's ACL return -- or it could signal doubt about Ertz's status. Either way, we're not moving Trey McBride down our TE rankings for this signing.

Cardinals beat writer Bob McManaman guesses QB Kyler Murray (ACL rehab) will miss the first 3-5 games. “Don’t buy into any of the rumors that may suggest he won’t play a single down during the entire 2023 season,” McManaman writes. Beyond the ACL recovery, Murray will also learn a new system under OC Drew Petzing. Our current QB rankings project 12 games played for Murray.

There wasn't much positive to take away from Cardinals TE Trey McBride's 2022 rookie season. He totaled only three receptions behind a healthy Zach Ertz over the first nine weeks of the season. Then he ranked just 19th among TEs in PPR points over the final seven games, without Ertz. McBride finished 42nd in Pro Football Focus' receiving grades and 40th in yards per route run among 43 qualifying TEs for the season. Ouch. But we know that rookie TEs rarely produce big numbers. And McBride was an intriguing prospect in last year's class, coming off a 1,121-yard season at Colorado State. He finds plenty of opportunity in 2023 with WR DeAndre Hopkins gone and a 32-year-old Ertz coming off a serious knee injury. At an 18th-round ADP, McBride is at least worth taking some shots on in best-ball drafts.

Zack Rosenblatt of The Athletic suggested in a recent report that he expects RB Michael Carter to be RB2 on the Jets' depth chart to open the 2023 season. Rosenblatt also noted that the possibility of free agent RB Dalvin Cook signing with the team "looms large" in the room, though Carter is "the most experienced, popular in the locker room and is generally a quality pass-catcher." It'll be fascinating to see how long he can hold onto this job assuming Rosenblatt is correct. Last season was not great for Carter. He opened the first six full games averaging 11.8 touches per game spelling fellow RB Breece Hall. Though after Hall tore his ACL in Week 7 vs. the Broncos, Carter's involvement dipped to just 7.6 touches per game. He was essentially phased out of a dysfunctional offense late in the year, eventually falling behind 2022 UDFA Zonovan Knight. Among 45 RBs with 100+ carries, Carter ranked 43rd in Pro Football Focus rushing grade, 45th in yards per carry, and 36th in yards after contact per attempt. On top of that, he only finished as a top-24 RB in PPR scoring in four games. Perhaps fantasy managers would be best to avoid Carter and bet on rookie Israel Abanikanda, a player who Rosenblatt predicts will inherit the #2 job as the season unfolds, instead. See where each of these backs appear in our current RB rankings.

Falcons QB Desmond Ridder has teammates fired up about his leadership heading into his second season. “When he talks, you listen,” TE Jonnu Smith told The Athletic. “Having leadership qualities is the most important trait you should have as a quarterback. He has that. He’s been coming in here and working his butt off. I have nothing but great things to say about Desmond.” Those words come from a seventh-year veteran heading into his age-28 season and in his first offseason with the Falcons. Others had similar praise for Ridder, who has not only led on-field work but reportedly been organizing events with teammates away from the field. All of this could mean nothing for his in-game performance. And Taylor Heinicke stands in wait as Ridder insurance. But all signs point to the Falcons hoping that Ridder will be their guy for at least the near future. He’s a fine late shot to take in superflex drafts. Check out his spot in our superflex rankings.

The Cardinals "intend on using a lot of two-TE sets this season," according to Jess Root of Cards Wire. That would mean significant time together on the field for second-year TE Trey McBride and TE Zach Ertz, once the vet's ready following his ACL recovery. But it would also potentially challenge the playing time for Arizona WRs not named Marquise Brown. The Cardinals already tied for ninth in the league in most "12 personnel" snaps (two TEs) last season. So we might not actually see an escalation this year. But we'll be watching the camp and preseason tendencies for the fantasy outlooks on WRs Rondale Moore, Greg Dortch and Michael Wilson. McBride and Ertz are both going late enough in best ball drafts to carry some upside, though we're not specifically targeting either player. See where all these Cardinals land in our PPR rankings.

ESPN's Josh Weinfuss named WR Michael Wilson the Cardinals' surprise offseason standout. "The rookie third-rounder has impressed his coaches and teammates with his route running and talent," Weinfuss writes. Wilson got plenty of first-team reps this spring and "could be a factor in Arizona's offense from Day 1 of the season," Weinfuss adds. The release of WR DeAndre Hopkins opens up tons of opportunity in Arizona's passing game. And, more specifically, a need for a big-bodied outside receiver. The 6'1, 213-pound Wilson fits the bill. He qualifies as an intriguing end-of-draft flier for now. We'll keep a close eye on his progress when training camp opens next month.

Jaguars WR Zay Jones set a career high in target share in his first Jacksonville season, ranking 33rd among WRs in that category. But his average target depth decreased by nearly 5 yards vs. his final season with the Raiders. That came despite Jones remaining primarily an outside WR. He has spent more than 65% of his pass snaps outside each of the past four years, according to Pro Football Focus. Calvin Ridley leads Jones by 1.0 in career aDOT and seems the more likely downfield threat for 2023. Jones, of course, is coming off the best fantasy season of his career. So this aspect might not matter too much. But the shorter aDOT could hurt further if Ridley's arrival cuts way into Jones' target share. All that said, we have Jones a little ahead of ADP in our 2023 WR rankings.

Cardinals RB James Conner missed four games and most of two others last season. But he was busy and productive when healthy. In 11 games with a snap rate of 55+%, he averaged 15.2 carries, 63.8 rushing yards, 4.8 targets, 3.9 catches, 24.2 receiving yards, and .73 total TDs. Conner's scoring average in those games would have ranked seventh in PPR and eighth in non-PPR. Arizona made no significant additions to the backfield this offseason and only returns RBs Keaontay Ingram and Corey Clement. So Conner appears poised for more big volume and looks like a prime value in 2023 fantasy football drafts with an ADP of RB25. See exactly where Conner sits in our RB Rankings.

The Cardinals made Stanford WR Michael Wilson a Round 3 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Wilson spent 5 years at Stanford and never reached 700 receiving yards in a season. He posted a 56-672-5 line as a sophomore but then missed 16 games with various injuries over the last 3 years. When healthy, Wilson is a physical receiver with good route-running ability and strong ball skills. There’s some JuJu Smith-Schuster to his game. He enters a Cardinals depth chart that looks wide open for the long-term. DeAndre Hopkins remains a trade candidate, while Marquise Brown is entering a contract year.

When asked about the team's QB situation on Tuesday, Falcons HC Arthur Smith shared the plan is for Desmond Ridder to open training camp as the starter. Smith also spoke about QB Taylor Heinicke, the former Commanders signal-caller who inked a two-year deal with the Falcons in free agency. "The chemistry in the quarterback room is important, as we expect Desmond to take the next step," said Smith. "But we also have [Heinicke] who can go in and win you football games and be ready to play." Reading between the lines a little bit, it sounds as though this could be a camp battle in which Heinicke would have an opportunity to win the job if Ridder slips. That said, we can't put too much stock into vague statements like this in late March. We'll surely have our attention on this situation should it evolve into something more into the summer. If nothing else, dynasty managers could consider throwing out some feelers to acquire Heinicke on the cheap in superflex leagues, but that's about all there is here.

WR Greg Dortch has signed his one-year tender from the Cardinals. It keeps the four-year veteran from reaching free agency, but he would have been an exclusive-rights free agent. So Arizona would have controlled his options. Dortch broke through for 52 catches and 467 yards last year, ranking fourth on the team in targets and third in receptions. He disappeared from the lineup when DeAndre Hopkins, Marquise Brown, and Rondale Moore were all healthy, though. Dortch will need a Hopkins trade to create him 2023 opportunity

Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill suggested in a Wednesday appearance on The Dave Pasch Podcast that QB Kyler Murray could miss a big chunk of the 2023 season. "I think (his return) is going to be earlier than this midseason, so hopefully, it's toward the beginning of the season, but I don't want to put any specific dates," Bidwill said. "There could be setbacks, the progress could slow. But he's a young man, it looks like he is a fast healer, things are going well. Let's hope that keeps going the way it is." Murray tore the ACL and meniscus in his right knee on December 12 and had surgery on January 3. A standard 9-month timeline would have him back in early October -- but it sounds like the team is bracing for a potentially longer absence. It's an especially tough situation with Arizona installing a new offense under OC Drew Petzing. Murray should be considered just a QB2 in early best-ball drafts.

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