Now 30 (31 in July), Peterson is one of the most accomplished defenders in Cardinals history and is a member of the Hall of Fame’s All-Decade team for the 2010s. He is not, however, the player he once was. He was hit with a six-game PED suspension to start the 2019 campaign, and after Pro Football Focus graded Peterson fifth among corners in 2018, he slipped to 41st in ’19 and 83rd in ’20. Quarterbacks throwing in Peterson’s direction last season collectively completed passes at a 67% clip — nearly 10 points higher than they did in 2018.
But he did pick off three passes in 2020, to go along with eight passes defensed. He has also been tremendously durable throughout his 10-year career, as the only games he has missed were due to the aforementioned suspension.
He joins a young CB room that had been fronted by a trio of recent early-round picks. Unlike Peterson, 2018 first-rounder Mike Hughes has not been able to stay healthy and has only suited up for 24 of a possible 48 regular season games in his pro career, while 2020 first-rounder Jeff Gladney struggled a bit in his rookie campaign. Cameron Dantzler, a third-round choice last year, played reasonably well as a rookie, but the group definitely needed a veteran influence like Peterson, an eight-time Pro Bowler and three-time First Team All-Pro.
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