There's probably not a more fantasy relevant team in the NFL than the Arizona Cardinals. They have a prolific offense and could have a dominant defense. They have five players being drafted in the first seven rounds of fantasy drafts, and that's in leagues that don't draft quarterbacks early.
You want to have Cardinals on your team.
The Cards have so many great offensive weapons that they have players on their bench who could contribute if they were on other teams. J.J. Nelson, Andre Ellington, and Chris Johnson are a few players that fit that bill. Nelson will get some run if one of the big three wide receivers goes down. Ellington or C.J. will have some value, depending on which becomes the true backup or change-of-pace back. All three are guys to think about late in drafts in deep leagues.
But here are the projections for the core group of Cardinals you want on your fantasy football teams.
Carson Palmer (QB) - 4400 yards, 33 TDs, 12 INTs.
Palmer was a late-round steal last season. Peter and I have to take a little credit on this one. We were advocating waiting on drafting a quarterback and taking Palmer all draft season, and he ended with over 4600 yards and 35 TDs. He has all the same weapons again this season and a head coach that likes to air it out. Palmer will end up on a few of my teams, and I'll be happy for it. Even at pick 70, his current average draft position (ADP), he is a value.
David Johnson (RB) - 1100 yards, 9 TDs - 40 catches, 480 yards, 2 TDs.
If you can draft David Johnson at the end of the first or beginning of the second round, do it. He was putting up numbers in 2015 even when he was the third running back. The only argument against Johnson: Jeremy Hill. Sophomore slumps are kind of a thing, but in this offense, I don't see it happening. Draft David Johnson.
Michael Floyd (WR) - 80 catches, 1200 yards, 9 TDs.
There are few players I'm more excited about this season than Michael Floyd. I've said it before, and I will say it again, Floyd is this season's breakout - on the level of Allen Robinson last season. When he was healthy in 2015, he was great. I'm drafting him everywhere as my WR2, and I expect him to end as a WR1. Floyd is going to win a few people their championships.
John Brown (WR) - 70 catches, 1000 yards, 7 TDs.
Bruce Arians loves the long ball. John Brown can run real fast. Carson Palmer throws the ball well downfield. I could probably end there, and most people would understand where I'm going. This is the perfect offense for Brown. His projected line is close to his 2015 line, which could be low if either Floyd or Larry Fitzgerald gets hurt. Brown is being drafted in the 6th round. If you need a high upside WR2, he's a great pick. He's even a better pick as a WR3.
Andre Ellington (RB)
The fantasy world has left Ellington by the wayside. Yes, Ellington is injury prone. Yes, Ellington is in a crowded backfield with a stud starter. Yes, Ellington is technically the third option in Arizona. Let's just remember, he was the starter last season. The third guy last season is now a first round pick, so let's not forget about Ellington completely. He's a great late round flier. You'll know what you need to do with him by the time the bye weeks start.
Larry Fitzgerald (WR).
Before last season, Fitz was telling people that he was the 3rd option in that passing game. When everyone was healthy, that proved to be true. If he's your WR3, I have no problem. If you draft him over the Floyd or Brown, that's a problem. Keep him in your queue but don't draft him as a starter at the wide receiver position.
Draft as many Cards as possible. It's really that simple.