Cardinals General Manager Steve Keim said last week that there’s “no doubt” that signing safety Tyrann Mathieu to a contract extension was a priority for the team this offseason.
Mathieu told Mike Jurecki of FOX Sports 910 in Phoenix that he has the same desire and wants to spend the rest of his career with the Cardinals. He also agreed with Keim about what else should be high on the agenda for the offseason.
“The biggest key is getting some edge presence, getting a dominant force off the edge,” Mathieu said. “Markus Golden has grown up; I think he had a hell of a season as a rookie, stepped up and played a big role for us. I think we need someone to complement his style of play. He’s furious, he’s a competitor, has a high motor, and I think if we can find something like that in the draft or free agency I think it will really help our defense.”
Golden was a second-round pick last year and wound up with four sacks while making six starts in 15 appearances with the team. That was good for third on the team behind Dwight Freeney and Calais Campbell. Campbell will be back, but Freeney is a free agent whose advancing age makes further additions to the unit likely even if Freeney does return.
Free agency has a few potential options when it comes to pass rushers, but their importance to their current teams means few wind up hitting the open market. The Cardinals will pick 29th in the first round.