After two consecutive NFC West titles, Arizona's recent dominance in the division looked to be fading fast. Following the retirement of QB Kurt Warner and the trade of WR Anquan Boldin to the Baltimore Ravens, the Cardinals' offense was entering somewhat of a rebuilding stage. Furthermore, the departures of linebacker Karlos Dansby and safety Antrel Rolle immediately put the team's defense in a compromising situation heading into the 2010 season.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Cardinals addressed the loss of Rolle by acquiring former New York Jets safety Kerry Rhodes. Rhodes fell out of favor with Jets coach Rex Ryan but should fit well in Arizona's defense. In addition to Rhodes, the Cardinals' front office managed to reel in free-agent linebackers Joey Porter and Paris Lenon. Porter provides the team's defense with the standout pass rusher it's been seeking while Lenon should help fill the void in the middle left by Dansby.
With the free-agency period winding down, Arizona's attention turns to the upcoming draft. The Cardinals still have several areas of need including the offensive line and secondary. Due to recent upgrades within the NFC West, Arizona needs another solid draft to keep its distance against the competition. The rapidly improving San Francisco 49ers along with the Seattle Seahawks led by new coach Pete Carroll will be trying desperately to breakthrough in the division.
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