Nick Fairley Could Replace Darnell Dockett


The salary cap casualties are starting to pile up as teams begin to prepare for the upcoming free agency period.  After releasing Ted Ginn Jr. last week, three-time pro bowl selection Darnell Dockett becomes the latest cap causality to wear Cardinal red.

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Dockett is 33 years old and was scheduled to make $ 6.8 million this season.  Those factors combined with his recent injury caused the cap-strapped Cardinals to look for relief by releasing Dockett into the free agent pool.  

In a statement about the release, Card GM Steve Keim left the door open for Dockett to return at a reduced price.

"“We have been very clear about our feelings for Darnell and our desire to have him back,” Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said in a statement Friday. “After speaking with him and his representatives, we decided that this move today makes the most sense for both the team and the player and allows each to keep all of its options open.”"

Whether or not Darnell Dockett decides to give the Cardinals and injury discount remains to be seen but the Cards still need to prepare for the future. 

Detroit Lions free agent Nick Fairley is a high risk/high reward player whose risk could me mitigated if the Cardinals are able to get him at the right price.

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Fairley is probably the most mysterious of the free agent defensive tackles but also has the biggest upside.  After getting demoted during training camp Fairly turned it on in 2014 becoming a run stopping force in the middle of the Detroit Lions defense.

It looked as if Fairley was in line for a monster contract in free agency until he injured his knee during the game in London.  Fairley’s knee injury was categorized as a sprain and although he would return to practice, he wouldn’t play a snap the rest of the season.

The Lions are going to make a run at re-signing Fairley but that will probably depend on what they do with fellow free agent Ndamukong Suh.  Considering the Lions declined to excercise Fairley’s team option in 2015, they could be looking for some cap savings.

When Fairley’s mind is right he is a force in the middle of the defense.  The question for Nick Fairley is and will always be his motivation.  The never quit culture Bruce Arians has built in Arizona could inspire Fairley to greatness.

Next: Could Adrian Peterson Be A Cardinal