The Cardinals took a chance this off season on Kevin White and several different players with an history of injuries.
TEMPE, Ariz. — Kliff Kingsbury did his homework on wide receiver Kevin White.
Each of them whined about White’s toughness, his personality and his competitive spirit.
But the one thing they couldn’t tell Kingsbury was if White would get hurt . And that’s the one question everyone’s most curious about.
That’s likewise made him the poster child for the Cardinals’ method of free agency this past year.
White’s long injury history made him available in free agency long enough for the Cardinals to sign him to a prove-it bargain on the 3rd day of the league year. And White has plenty to establish. He’s played just 14 games since he had been drafted seventh overall by the Bears in 2015 as a result of two fibula fractures and also a shoulder break.
Signing players like White — those who have a recent injury history — has been just one section of Arizona’s two-pronged free-agency formula. One other part has been to again sign experts to shortterm deals. Both have grown to be more of the rule of the Cardinals in free agency than the exclusion.
The buy-low, sell-high method of free agency continues to be a constant in general manager Steve Keim’s seven-year tenure.
Of those 11 players that the Cardinals have signed through the first eight weeks of free agency and 14 added entire including via commerce, seven inked one-year contracts and seven have dealt with significant damage issues lately.
“I presume it’s fit with what we’re attempting to accomplish. [Defensive coordinator] Vance [Joseph] had a previous relationship with a bunch of those people defensively — if Vance or [linebackers coach] Billy [Davis] — also felt good about who they are people and high-character guys who can come in and start to become good leaders in our lockerroom in a first year whenever you are really trying to set a culture and do things the ideal way.”
The only one upside for Kingsbury is that an injured player may still be considered a presence in the lockerroom.
Over the past couple seasons, injuries have limited Cardinals developments such as interior linebacker Jordan Hicks (four years, $ 3-4 million), who missed four games last season with a calf injury and nine in 20 17 having an Achilles injury; tight end Charles Clay (annually, $34 million), who has dealt with kneeback and hamstring problems; offensive lineman Marcus Gilbert (trade), who’d recurring ankle issues early in his career and ended last season on injured reserve with a knee injury; offensive lineman Max Garcia (annually, $2 million), who tore his ACL last season; along with corner-back Robert Alford (three years, $22.5 million), who has dealt with an ankle injury.
“after all, that’s section of the group,” Kingsbury said. “I think everyone has injury concerns. There exists a certain element of chance that goes to it with guys having the ability to remain healthy, and a year ago Arizona was struck with all the injury bug a while and we expect which does not happen again this season”
This isn’t the first time Arizona has signed free agents with recent injury histories.
The Cardinals signed injury-prone quarter back Sam Bradford this past year to some two-year mega-deal. He started just three games and has been released during the season. They also signed tackle Andre Smith into some two-year agreement in front of last season. He had been coming off back to back season-ending traumas and started eight of 11 games before being published.
Guard Justin Pugh, additionally a portion of the Cards’ 2018 free-agency class, signed with Arizona later handling a back injury in his last season using the New York Giants that landed him on injured reserve. He started all seven games he played before being placed on injured reserve in Week 10 with a left knee injury.
This calendar year, Kingsbury is”very happy” with how the first round of free agency went for the Cardinals.
He believes White gets got the potential to truly have a direct influence on Arizona’s crime.
“That is what we’re searching for out,” Kingsbury said. “I think just a FreshStart [is what he really needs]. He had some hard injuries. He’s still 6-3, 205 and ran a 4.3 at the combination. And therefore, we must use and see what he has, as I saw it in person on the sideline and he could be a dangerous player and we hope that that’s what we get.”