Despite losing outside linebacker Markus Golden to a torn ACL, the Cardinals don’t intend to target free agent edge rusher Dwight Freeney at this time, according to Alex Marvez of SiriusXM NFL Radio (Twitter link).
Freeney, now 37 years old, spent the 2015 campaign in Arizona and managed eight sacks down the stretch after signing with the club midseason. Last year, Freeney didn’t have to wait quite as long to land a contract, and put up three sacks and 26.5 pressures for the Falcons while playing roughly a third of Atlanta’s defensive snaps.
Despite that performance, Freeney has yet to draw any interest on the free agent market. He still plans to continue his career, and there’s an argument to be made that waiting until, say, Week 6 to sign a deal could actually help a pass rusher of Freeney’s age by limiting his overall usage. The Falcons, who are dealing with injuries to Vic Beasley, Jack Crawford, and Courtney Upshaw along their defensive line, have been in contact with Freeney but seemingly have no plans to sign him.
In lieu of adding an edge defender, the Cardinals will shift rookie Haason Reddick from inside to outside linebacker, head coach Bruce Arians tells SiriusXM (Twitter link). Deone Bucannon is nearing a return and should be able to take over at inside ‘backer, while the recently promoted Scooby Wright could also see action.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.