One player the Arizona Cardinals are hoping not to lose in this free agency is Bobby Massie, their right tackle. However, the former Ole Miss player might end up playing for the Chicago Bears or New York Giants.
In four seasons with the Cardinals, Massie has twice started in all 16 games, missed half of the 2013 season and played in 14 games last year. He played on a rookie deal the last four years, making $1.3 million in base salary last season. Now, he’s looking for around $8 million a season, and the Cardinals, who have $15 million in available cap space at the moment, prefer not to go that high if they can re-sign him for less.
The highest paid right tackle in the NFL is Lane Johnson of the Philadelphia Eagles, making $11.25 million a year. Behind him are six players who make between $6 million and $7 million a season, and it’ll be interesting to see if Massie can generate that kind of enthusiasm and spending will in order to reach a deal that pays around $32 million for four years, although what kind of guaranteed money he’ll get might be more important than the annual average.
Both the Giants and Bears have plenty of money to spend, but obviously, paying high above the market value isn’t going to happen with Massie, who had a very good season in 2015, but doesn’t have any All-Pro or Pro Bowl appearances. Kelechi Osemele signing for $12 million a season with the Oakland Raiders might do something to the offensive tackles market, but he’s a left tackle, who are better paid than right tackles almost every time.
The Cardinals do have D.J. Humphries on contract after being a first round pick last season, but cutting him is an option after he didn’t play a single game in 2015, even if it costs them some dead money. There has been talk of progress in his ability from learning on the sidelines, but the Cardinals probably prefer keeping Massie around before turning to Humphries in order to fill the right tackle position.