Alameda Ta'amu - #66 - Defensive Tackle - 6'3" - 348lbs
Thu. Mar 6, 2014 | RotoWire
News: Ta'amu signed a one-year deal with the Cardinals on Thursday, Darren Urban of the team's official site reports.
Impact: Despite sustaining a torn ACL in Week 17, Arizona will keep the nose tackle around on a cheap deal in order to provide depth for Dan Williams. In 14 games, Ta'amu made a sparse mark on the stat sheet, posting seven tackles (five solo) and no other counting stats.
Matt Shaughnessy - #91 - Linebacker - 6'5" - 285lbs
Tue. Mar 4, 2014 | RotoWire
News: The Cardinals are making attempts to re-sign unrestricted free agent Matt Shaughnessy, the Arizona Republic reports. "They are actively trying to re-sign him," his agent Rich Rosa said. "He wants to be there, so we'll see how it goes."
Impact: After spending the first four years of his career in Oakland, Shaughnessy put pen to paper last offseason on a one-year deal. An injury-plagued 2011 campaign aside, he's tallied at least three sacks in each season, but if he re-ups, he'll more than likely slot in as a reserve outside linebacker and situational pass rusher in the Cardinals' 3-4 scheme.
Jasper Brinkley - #52 - Linebacker - 6'1" - 252lbs
Fri. Feb 28, 2014 | RotoWire
News: Brinkley was released by the Cardinals on Friday, NFL.com reports.
Impact: In what will end up being Brinkley's first and only season with Arizona in 2013, the 28-year-old recorded just 27 tackles (23 solo) and zero sacks in 15 games. He still doesn't have a sack or an interception in his NFL career, but Brinkley did force three fumbles while with the Vikings in 2012.
Ryan Williams - #34 - Running back - 5'9" - 207lbs
Feb 23, 2014 | RotoWire
News: Williams will have an opportunity to stick with the Cardinals next season, but a roster spot isn't guaranteed, the Cardinals' official site reports. At the scouting combine Friday, coach Bruce Arians said, "Ryan has a chance this year. He went into training camp [last year] and missed the entire preseason. It's very hard to become a player during the season when you miss the entire preseason...The big thing, he came to work every day. The consistency of showing up to work every day, that will be the big thing for him in training camp this year."
Impact: Williams, who is entering the final year of his rookie deal, is coming off a season in which he was a healthy scratch in all 16 games. Meanwhile, taking on the backfield reps for the majority of 2013 were the veteran Rashard Mendenhall and rookie dynamo Andre Ellington. The former is a free agent and may take his talent elsewhere, but Ellington will enter training camp as the clear-cut, No. 1 RB. Among those remaining on the roster, Williams' main competition is Stepfan Taylor, a 2013 draft selection, but whoever lands the primary backup gig will still figure into the offense regularly, in order to keep Ellington's health intact. Williams could very well be that player, despite just five appearances scattered across his first three NFL campaigns, all in 2012.
Andre Ellington - #38 - Running back - 5'9" - 199lbs
Thu. Feb 20, 2014 | RotoWire
News: Ellington won't be a "featured" back during the 2014 season, Darren Urban of the Cardinals' official site reports. In an attempt to clarify his eventual role, general manager Steve Keim said, "When you say featured back, I don't know that there are many featured backs in the NFL. Adrian Peterson, those types of guys. Most teams use a platoon of backs and that would probably be no different than us. Andre, the way he's built, is body type, is more in line with Chris Johnson, Jamaal Charles...To say you're going to play him 25 to 35 snaps, pounding the ball between the tackles, you're probably leaving yourself open to injuries."
Impact: In actuality, Keim likely misspoke, intending to say "carries" rather than "snaps." Because Ellington is considered the top back as the offseason begins, he'll likely settle into the 25-to-35 snap range in a platoon with Stepfan Taylor or Ryan Williams, unless Rashard Mendenhall is re-signed. Ellington will attempt to build upon a rookie campaign in which he averaged 29.4 snaps per game in seven appearances after the Cardinals' Week 9 bye.