Cardinals, DE Markus Golden Agree To Extension

The Cardinals lost their top pass rusher in free agency this spring, but they will have their new No. 1 at the position on the books for two more years. Markus Golden is signing a one-year extension with a maximum value of $6.5MM (Twitter link via ESPN’s Field Yates). 

The 31-year-old returned to Arizona last season on a two-year, $9MM deal. With this extension, he will now remain until at least 2023. Last season, Golden put up 11 sacks, his first time reaching double-digits since 2019 when he was a member of the Giants.

Golden spent less than two seasons in the Big Apple, as his 10-sack campaign to begin his New York tenure was followed by the team applying the rarely-used UFA tender on him. He remained there for the beginning of the 2020 season, but was traded back to Arizona midway through the campaign.

With Chandler Jones having signed with the Raiders in free agency, Golden now has the opportunity to operate as the top edge rusher on the Cardinals. His 35 pressures last season were the second most of his career, and Arizona is clearly investing in that total either remaining consistent or increasing over the next two years with Jones no longer in the picture.

Golden was due a non-guaranteed base salary of $2MM this season, so this extension could be aimed at providing him with a raise in the immediate future. There are likely to be incentives as part of the agreement as well. In any case, the Cardinals have cost certainty with another key player in the final days of an offseason filled with notable re-signings.

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