Behind Enemy Lines: Cardinals takes by expert Aarron Van Buren
By Bret Stuter
How about that Hollywood Brown Trade?
Ramblin fan: The Arizona Cardinals seemed to make a curious Draft Day trade, sending a valuable first-round pick (23rd overall) to the Baltimore Ravens for WR Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown and a third-round pick. Was part of the motivation to do so an attempt by the Cardinals front office to placate an irate QB Kyler Murray? Do you see this as buying candy to assuage a temper tantrum from Murray? Or do you see the synergy of Brown and Murray being better than advertised?
I think that’s a great way to sum it up in a way. Because the Arizona Cardinals and General Manager Steve Keim knew about Hopkins’ inevitable suspension before the draft, it makes sense why they were as active as a sloth in free agency. They wanted to make sure they could afford Brown and not irk Murray anymore than they already did. What is really a dynamic and intense conversation being had amongst Cardinals fans is the situation with Rodney Hudson potentially retiring. The Cardinals also knew about that before the draft, yet didn’t add an offensive lineman until later in the draft.
I think the Cardinals asked themselves what would make us feel the best and appeal to the fans the most? The answer is a wide receiver will always win a popularity contest over a center. So that’s why they traded for Brown, yet they were arguably worse off when Sean Harlow had to play center last year and the offensive line became turnstiles in a subway station. On the flip side, I think the Cardinals are hoping that they get a “Joe Burrow-JaMarr Chase” production by pairing up former college teammates in Murray and Brown.
The issue with that is if Brown takes over Kirk’s role in the offense, it may not please Cardinals fans. Kirk’s average depth of target (aDOT) was 11.6 last season, which isn’t bad. But Cardinals fans have been yearning for deeper passes to play into their players’ skillsets. That just hasn’t happened in Kingsbury’s offense and remains to be seen going into 2022.