Larry Fitzgerald will return for the 2018 season, Cardinals say

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The front office must address the position in free agency and the 2018 NFL draft, but Fitzgerald's return will give Arizona both a reliable target and the league's best veteran leadership at the position.

Larry Fitzgerald is coming back.


Despite considering retirement, Larry Fitzgerald will return for his 15th season with the Arizona Cardinals. That's a challenge for a receiver who will be 35 before the season kicks off. At the time, he would not commit to playing, and once Bruce Arians retired, it made sense for him to wait to see what the new coaching staff would look like.

The feeling had been that Fitzgerald would play again, in part because he was willing to sign a contract extension in early November for 2018. It's worth mentioning that the Cardinals still need to find a quarterback, but Fitzgerald has proven he can remain effective regardless of who is throwing the football. He has 11 Pro Bowl appearances and now ranks third all-time in both receptions (1,234) and yards (15,545), leading all active players in each category.


Stanton went 79 of 159 for 894 yards in 2017 with six touchdowns and five interceptions. We know that's in Fitzgerald's wheelhouse, as his wildly productive 2015-17 campaigns were preceded by three years with less than 1,000 receiving yards, when he was still adjusting to his new role. He needs 92 catches to overtake Tony Gonzalez, and 390 yards to pass newly-minted Hall-of-Famer Terrell Owens.


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