What’s next for Larry Fitzgerald?

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His coach is retired, and his quarterback is gone, too. What will that mean for a 34-year-old, future-Hall-of-Fame receiver?

The status of Larry Fitzgerald is the next question for the Cardinals to resolve. He signed a one-year extension during the 2017 season, putting him under contract through 2018. But that move likely had plenty to do with avoid any talk regarding his playing destination for 2018 before that topic emerged.

As it stands, Fitzgerald is under contract withthe Cardinals for another year. What if he wants to keep playing, but no longer wants to play for the Cardinals?

In late 2016, Fitzgerald seemed to tie his interest in continuing his career to playing for a contender. “I’m uncertain what I’m going to do moving forward,” Fitzgerald said at the time. “But I still love the game, I love the competition. I love being around the guys and competing for a championship. That’s a lot of fun to me, and that’s kind of where I’m at right now.”

Few will believe that the Cardinals instantly will be competing for a championship in 2018. If Fitzgerald doesn’t see a path to the Super Bowl in Arizona for what would be his 15th NFL season, would he want to finish up with a team whose championship window is open?

And that’s where this could get very interesting. Fitzgerald, a Minnesota native, was a ball boy for the 1998 Vikings. Fitzgerald’s father said in 2011 that Larry “always wanted to be a Viking because he is a Viking.”

With a balanced offense and a potent defense, there may be no better time for Fitzgerald to become a Viking, where the combination of Fitzgerald, Stefon Diggs, and Adam Thielen could rival the “Three Deep” trio of Randy Moss, Cris Carter, and Jake Reed from Fitzgerald’s youth.

87 responses to “What’s next for Larry Fitzgerald?

  1. If he seriously wants 1 season to get a ring, then it’s gotta be with the Pats, best chance is there. He can still play and would be great on the Pats, doesn’t have to be the featured WR and he can put up Pro Bowl numbers there. Good way to close out your career with Brady.

    Vikings will not be serious contenders, especially with Rodgers back next year. They are a great team but they aren’t near SB favorites.

  2. The odds that he plays anywhere else are slim and none. He has stated many times that he will retire a Cardinal. Having seen the integrity that this man displays, time and time again. I am inclined to take him at his word.

  3. We’re entering that part of the year now where every free agent is signing for vet minimum just to have the honor of playing for the Eagles.

  4. If anyone would have set himself up financially for several lifetimes by now, it’s him. He doesn’t need the money so he’s not going to play one more minute than he wants to, nor should anyone expect him to.

  5. As a Vikings fan I would love to see him in Minnesota. He’s a great team player and they’ have built a great team mentality. However the odds of the Pats winning a Super Bowl are good every year and they could always use a wide receiver of his caliber. gosh I hope he doesn’t go there.

  6. Vikings or Broadcaster. And @Liquidsmoke, Vikings are SB contenders? What do you call a 13-3 record that could have very easily been a 15-1 record, the 2nd seed, and the favorites in the NFC?

    A start over on defense, a new GM that may not want McCarthy, and a 34 year old QB that has now broke both of his collarbones, and has had ankle issues in the past. Not to mention talk that both Nelson and Cobb could be cut, and you think that GB is going to stand in the Vikings way? Typical packer fan sniffing the glue before he types. The Vikings are better in every aspect than GB, and that’s a fact.

  7. One of the best people to ever play the game of football…
    I wish he would come back to Pittsburgh to finish things out.

  8. Larry Fitzgerald was a superstar long before Bruce Arians and Carson Palmer came to town, and nothing is going to change now that they’re gone. The 49ers gave away a 2nd round draft pick to get Jimmy Garoppolo, and they went 5-0 in games he started, after beginning the season 1-10. The Vikings picked up Case Keenum as a free agent, and went 13-3. There are good QB’s out there. The Cards should be able to find one. Fitz doesn’t seem like the kind of guy that’s going to take the easy way out and jump aboard a free ride. He’d rather try to rally his own team.

  9. I am looking forward to seeing him on TV spouting cliches soon. I have run across him on the Monday night radio pregame show with Jim Gray and man does he have nothing interesting to say.

  10. As a fan of football and a fan of the Eagles, I would absolutely love to see Fitz in midnight green. There’s a lot of hate for Birds fans out there so I fully expect this to get down voted into oblivion, but I feel Fitz alongside Ertz, Jeffery and Agholor would be a potent lineup. I worked for the Eagles back in 2008 when they lost to the Cardinals in the NFC Championship game, and that loss was largely thanks to Fitz balling out. I walked away from that game amazed at his ability and professionalism, and on top of that he’s just a solid human being. Sadly that’s a rare commodity these days, there’s not a roster in the league that couldn’t use more solid human beings instead of divas and me me me guys. Best of luck Fitz whatever you decide to do next, you’ve been a ton of fun to watch over the years.

  11. likuidsmoke says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:07 pm

    If he seriously wants 1 season to get a ring, then it’s gotta be with the Pats, best chance is there. He can still play and would be great on the Pats, doesn’t have to be the featured WR and he can put up Pro Bowl numbers there. Good way to close out your career with Brady.

    Vikings will not be serious contenders, especially with Rodgers back next year. They are a great team but they aren’t near SB favorites.
    _________

    I’ll agree that the Patriots are the team that has the best chance to win the Super Bowl in any given year because of their history. I disagree that the Vikings aren’t serious contenders. The Patriots have the best odds to win this year at 2-1, but the Vikings are next at 4-1. So to say they aren’t near Super Bowl favorites is false. You never know what’s going to happen from year to year, but I don’t see why they wouldn’t go into next year as one of the favorites to win the Super Bowl. The defense is the strength of the team and that isn’t going anywhere. They’ll have Dalvin Cook back. Case Keenum will have an entire offseason in the offense.

    And here’s a news flash. Aaron Rodgers has nothing to do with the Vikings. Their team will be as good as it’s going to be regardless of what players are on other teams. The Vikings have beaten the Packers in four of the last five games, two of three with Rodgers. The presence of Rodgers helps the Packers, who are a dumpster fire without him. He doesn’t affect the Vikings.

  12. The Packers don’t need another old WR. We already have a good one in Jordy. If he’s retained, he’ll play exactly the same spot Fitz would play – big bodied slot WR.

    I’d suggest Fitz retire. Be a Cardinal legend and leave it at that. The Vikings certainly don’t have a QB. Keenum will show his true colors before the playoffs are done. Brady is aging.

  13. Pats….29th ranked Defense with a 40 year old QB. I think his best chance is to remain in the NFC, which is by far the stronger conference even if its chances have diminished with Mr. Wentz going down (funny how that always seems to happen). I would love to see him become a Viking and I am not even a Viking fan.

  14. ARod(in his collarbone) says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:21 pm
    The Vikings are better in every aspect than GB, and that’s a fact.

    ———–

    You are claiming that the Vikings have a better QB than Aaron Rodgers? Please child…

  15. I doubt he would ask for a trade, even if it’s in the chase for a ring. He’s loyal to his contract. That said, I can see the Cardinals trading him and him being amenable to it. Question is, what’s a team going to give up for one of the greatest all-time WRs for just one year? I think it would be cool to see him play with Jimmy Garoppolo for a year and I’m not a 49ers fan at all.

  16. reddzen says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:39 pm
    Pats….29th ranked Defense with a 40 year old QB. I think his best chance is to remain in the NFC, which is by far the stronger conference even if its chances have diminished with Mr. Wentz going down (funny how that always seems to happen). I would love to see him become a Viking and I am not even a Viking fan.

    ———–

    Pats #1 ranked defense in points allowed over the past 12 games….. Sorry son, total yards is no measure of a defense. Oh, and that 40 year old QB is a top MVP candidate…..again

  17. Going to MN would make tons of sense. The Vikings could use him right now, while the Cards are rebuilding and keeping him (instead of getting a draft pick) would do them no good.

  18. Larry should ask for a trade and bring a list that consists of: New England, Pittsburgh (if Ben doesn’t retire), NO and Carolina. The Vikings are not a good destination due to their mess at QB. The Cards FO would never trade him to a NFC West team, so the Rams and Seahawks are out. Since the AFC is hot garbage outside of NE and Pitt when it comes to real SB contenders and no NFC West teams will be considered, the list gets very short quickly. I hope the Cards treat him right and trade him to a contender.

  19. allight59 says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:52 pm

    Get your ring with the Vikings as they’ll get their 2nd next year…Come on board, Larry!

    /////////////////////////

    Who’s the QB next season? All 3 QBs on the roster are UFAs. If they keep Keenum, does anyone really believe he can repeat his success next year after a career of being a mediocre backup? How about Teddy B? Is he going to be a good enough passer to make the Fitz signing worthwhile? Bradford is a goner. Too much risk for Fitz in Minny next season.

  20. TheDPR says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:41 pm

    I think it would be cool to see him play with Jimmy Garoppolo for a year and I’m not a 49ers fan at all.
    ___________________________________________________________________________________

    Being a Pats’ fan, I love Jimmy G., but still, why in the world would he leave the comfort of home for a VERY outside shot at winning a Super Bowl in one or two years? There are much better places, odds-wise.

  21. Top 5 WRs in Pro Football history : Randy Moss, Jerry Rice, Art Monk, Larry Fitzgerald and Calvin Johnson. In that order.

    Cris Carter, Paul Warfield, Cliff Branch, Isaac Curtis, Drew Pearson, John Stallworth, Al Toon all better players than Art Monk.

  22. You B. Crazy says:
    January 3, 2018 at 1:02 pm
    allight59 says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:52 pm

    Get your ring with the Vikings as they’ll get their 2nd next year…Come on board, Larry!

    /////////////////////////

    Who’s the QB next season? All 3 QBs on the roster are UFAs. If they keep Keenum, does anyone really believe he can repeat his success next year after a career of being a mediocre backup? How about Teddy B? Is he going to be a good enough passer to make the Fitz signing worthwhile? Bradford is a goner. Too much risk for Fitz in Minny next season.
    ///////////////////////////

    Keenum is STILL the all time leading passer in NCAA Division I (FBS) history.

  23. I think most of these comments are ‘I want him to join my team’ without giving a thought to what Fitz wants or how he will fit into that team. Larry has been used in the slot for a couple of years because he lost some speed and his downfield blocking. I can see Larry going ‘home’ to Minnesota. He would fit into Minnesota offense. Just going to a winning team, and not having much of a role, is not the Larry Fitzgerald I grown accustom to seeing. Larry Fitzgerald wants to play a part in any team he plays for. When he is not able to, he will retire. I believe it’s Minnesota or staying in Arizona.

  24. He will remain with the team. They will make a play for Kirk Cousins. People so easily forget that they have been a contender for years but suffered endless injuries at QB. They were also missing some other key players, most notably their monster of a RB. They have a good enough defense, and playing in the desert is probably a lot easier than a cold-weather destination for an older guy.

    I like Fitz and I have had my hewrt torn out by him many times over the years as a Seahawks fan. I hope he goes to the AFC and the Cardinals do a page-one rewrite, but I just don’t see it happening.

  25. Even though I hate the PATS, I want Larry to get his Ring, and the PATS will get him one. I would actually root for the PATS if he went their.

  26. Larry’s skill set would fit the Patriots LIKE A GLOVE! Imagine Larry and Gronk at each end of the line with Cooks out wide and Brady behind center. There’s nothing you could do to stop it!

  27. I have a ton of respect for Larry but I don’t think the Vikings really need him or want him. Not to mention, Zimmer has no history with Larry. Larry’s time with the Vikings was 20 years ago with a bunch of guys who are no longer involved with the team. All nostalgia aside it just doesn’t make sense.

  28. likuidsmoke says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:07 pm
    If he seriously wants 1 season to get a ring, then it’s gotta be with the Pats, best chance is there. He can still play and would be great on the Pats, doesn’t have to be the featured WR and he can put up Pro Bowl numbers there. Good way to close out your career with Brady.

    Vikings will not be serious contenders, especially with Rodgers back next year. They are a great team but they aren’t near SB favorites

    ///////////////////////

    Well thanks for your condescending point of view. But the world does not revolve around the pats. The Vikings are a more complete team except for the QB position than the pats.

  29. reddzen says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    Pats….29th ranked Defense with a 40 year old QB. I think his best chance is to remain in the NFC, which is by far the stronger conference…
    ________________________________________________

    If you really believe the NFC is ‘by far the stronger conference’ then by that logic it is the harder conference to win and his best chance resides in leaving it. For a guy looking at playing for a ring there’s a huge upside to playing with that 40 year old QB. No matter how much it rankles you the Pats are a fair bet to get to the big dance every year Brady suits up. Personally I think Fitz has been a good soldier for a very long time and if he wants to end his career elsewhere then I hope it’s someplace where he can get a ring. A lot of very good players have had long distinguished careers and finished without one, would be nice to see Fitzgerald get his no matter where that may be.

  30. I like the Vikings and I’m glad they’re doing well. But please don’t say you would bet the Vikings have a better chance at the SB next year than the Patriots do. Cardinals fell off from 2015 to 2016, so nothing is sure for next season, the only thing for sure is that Brady and the Pats will be contenders.

  31. What is this nonsense? Fitz has repeatedly stated he is a Cardinal for life. He has had many chances to leave in the past & every-time he has chosen to stay. Why would he sign an extension late this season after the writing was on the wall for both Arians & Palmer, if his intention was to leave the team if they both retire?

    #fakenews

  32. ez0682 says:
    January 3, 2018 at 11:59 am
    Welcome to the Eagles! Cm now everyone wants to be a bird and play along side Carson Wentz. E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES!
    ——-

    You know until he gets hurt….Good luck with Foles next week!

  33. I’ve lived in AZ since a month before Larry was drafted. I’ve been at all his home games except for 2. As much as I’d like to see him finish up with the Cards, I wouldn’t begrudge him in the least if he were to take a shot elsewhere for a year or two, particularly if he were to go home to Minnesota. Even if he finishes elsewhere, he’ll still retire as a Card, and be a first ballot HOFer 5 years later. Nothing but the best to you Larry – thanks for all you’ve done not only for the Cards franchise, but for the local community and the game of football.

  34. The Vikes are certainly SB contenders this year and the next, but the Pats clearly have that edge. However, in the very unlikely event Fitz moves on, and there is mutual interest, the most likely spot is home to MN. I don’t see a guy of his character moving on just to grab a ring unless there’s a strong connection.

  35. What’s with the constant talk of him to Minnesota? I’m a Vikings fan, but we don’t need him. It would have been nice 7 years ago, but unnecessary now. Plus, there’s no QB going into next year. If they re-sign Keenum, he’s not much of a long ball guy, so “3-Deep” is kind of a stretch. Unless they’re bringing him in on a low salary for a year, it’s a waste of money. Now Larry might be the guy to take a cut to play for his hometown team, but someone else is definitely willing to pay him.

  36. Future Patriot. After such a great career, Larry deserves the opportunity to experience winning a Super Bowl. Make it happen Bill – naturally for minimum payments only.

  37. Fitzgerald may have played at Pitt, but he is way, way, waaaaaaaaay too classy to play for the Eagles.

  38. Please people, watch the “A Football Life” on Fitz. If he comes back to any team it’s gonna be to the Vikings. Pats fans quit globing onto every HOF player thinking your team is the only desirable spot. He eats, breathes and lives MN. That’s all you need to know.

  39. Fitz is done unless the Cards get him a real QB he can trust, like Cousins for example. For him a possible Super Bowl with another team other than the Cardinals wouldn’t be enough.

  40. What I want:
    Larry, come home to Minny! Keep the winter palace in AZ, play for a highly talented team that is culturally team-1st (humble men, much like Larry) & is ranked high on both sides of the ball.

    What I fear:
    OC Pat Shurmur & QB Case Keenum heading South to AZ.

    Understandable:
    Larry in NE or Pittsburgh (that order)

  41. logicalvoicesays says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:01 pm
    Top 5 WRs in Pro Football history : Randy Moss, Jerry Rice, Art Monk, Larry Fitzgerald and Calvin Johnson. In that order.
    ______________________________________________
    You have to go a little further to reach Fitzgerald…maybe 7th? If you are saying All-time then: 1)Jerry Rice, 2)Randy Moss, 3)Lance Alworth, 4)Steve Largent, 5)Terrell Owens, 6)Don Hutson, 7)Larry Fitzgerald in that order. You can’t possibly leave out Alworth or Largent! Have you ever heard of them? If not study up because you are missing out on a receiver that played like today’s stars, but with the rough and bumpy defenders of the past… back when pass interference meant being clotheslined or punched!

  42. Ok..Ill say it while other put him on their top 5 WRs of all time list. Ill say he is the BEST WR if all time. Factor in his stats with horrible ANd too. He has Chris Carter hands. Jerry Rice route running. Terrell Owens toughness and size ( any WR that plays a Superbowl with a broken ankle is tough) He made other WRs better like Moss. Total package. Total class guy and team first. I’d love him in Philly but Pitts and New England make sense. Maybe the Vikes

  43. likuidsmoke says:
    January 3, 2018 at 1:57 pm
    I like the Vikings and I’m glad they’re doing well. But please don’t say you would bet the Vikings have a better chance at the SB next year than the Patriots do. Cardinals fell off from 2015 to 2016, so nothing is sure for next season, the only thing for sure is that Brady and the Pats will be contenders

    ////////////////////////

    I like the pats and I’m glad they’re doing well. But please don’t say you would bet the Pats have a better chance at the SB next year than the Vikings do. Cardinals fell off from 2015 to 2016, so nothing is sure for next season, the only thing for sure is that Zim and the Vikings will be contenders. Works both ways.

  44. Would love to see Diggs and Thielen on the outside and Fitzgerald in the slot. With Rudolph at TE and Cook in the backfield that would be fun to watch.

  45. What is this talk about the Eagles, or the Niners? IF Fitz is leaving it would be the Vikes or the Pats, but getting a ring is not gonna cloud his vision. He’s gonna weigh all variables. He may not want to freeze his hind end off in NE those last handful of games of the season. We’ve got a pretty nice place in Minny! SKOL!

  46. nhpats
    Talking about #1 defense in points allowed the past 12 years. Well look at the QB’s your team faces in it’s division. That helps your defense before they snap the ball once.

  47. Unless Bradford is throwing him the ball he won’t do anything in the Vikings offense. Keenum is not a reliable downfield passer, and neither is Bridgewater.

    Patriots make the most sense. That offense would be truly unstoppable.

  48. EJ says:

    January 3, 2018 at 4:06 pm

    logicalvoicesays says:
    January 3, 2018 at 12:01 pm
    Top 5 WRs in Pro Football history : Randy Moss, Jerry Rice, Art Monk, Larry Fitzgerald and Calvin Johnson. In that order.
    ______________________________________________
    You have to go a little further to reach Fitzgerald…maybe 7th? If you are saying All-time then: 1)Jerry Rice, 2)Randy Moss, 3)Lance Alworth, 4)Steve Largent, 5)Terrell Owens, 6)Don Hutson, 7)Larry Fitzgerald in that order. You can’t possibly leave out Alworth or Largent! Have you ever heard of them? If not study up because you are missing out on a receiver that played like today’s stars, but with the rough and bumpy defenders of the past… back when pass interference meant being clotheslined or punched!
    ***********************
    Lance Alworth #1. Randy Moss #2 Larry Fitzgerald #3

  49. nhpats says:
    January 3, 2018 at 7:26 pm
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    fmc651 says:
    January 3, 2018 at 6:17 pm
    nhpats
    Talking about #1 defense in points allowed the past 12 years. Well look at the QB’s your team faces in it’s division. That helps your defense before they snap the ball once.

    ———-

    Let’s see….they faced Brees, Newton, Ben, Alex Smith, Matt Ryan, Winston, Carr, and Deshaun Watson.

    Oh…..and Philip Rivers

  50. Top 5 WRs in pro football history: 1. Larry Fitzgerald 2. Jerry Rice 3. Anquan Boldin 4. Randy Moss 5. Terrell Owens

    . . . in that order.

  51. flviking says:
    January 3, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    I like the pats and I’m glad they’re doing well…don’t say you would bet the Pats have a better chance at the SB next year than the Vikings do.
    ______________________________________

    No you don’t and yes they do.

  52. nhpats give it up your defense isn’t as good as the Vikings this year.The Vikings faced Brees, Ryan, Winston, Newton and Ben this year as well.

  53. taintedsaints2009 says:

    January 3, 2018 at 7:01 pm

    Unless Bradford is throwing him the ball he won’t do anything in the Vikings offense. Keenum is not a reliable downfield passer, and neither is Bridgewater.

    Patriots make the most sense. That offense would be truly unstoppable.

    ——————–

    Keenum is #2 in total QBR. So how is he not a reliable downfield passer? The Vikings offense is ranked #5 this year. Just saying..

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