The highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals are players who have turned playing American football into an art. The team has been led to victory a number of times by an incredibly talented set of individuals.
Arizona Cardinals are an American football club that operates out of the Phoenix metropolitan area. The club has sometimes gone out of its way to hire the best and place them on reasonable salaries.
The team has the likes of DeAndre Hopkins and J.J. Watts as well as a long retinue of rated players to play for them. This spurs the players into giving their best on and off the field and making them the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
This article highlights the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals, details about them you may not have heard of, and how much they earn that makes them among the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinal.
Have the Arizona Cardinals Won the NFL Championships?
The Cardinals have two NFL titles, both when headquartered in Chicago. The first was in 1925, although it is disputed, with supporters of the Pottsville Maroons feeling that Pottsville should have won the championship.
Their second championship, and the first in a championship game, was won in 1947, nearly two decades before the first Super Bowl.
Since winning the title in 1947, the club has had numerous losing seasons and presently has the longest ongoing championship drought in North American sports, having gone 75 straight seasons without a championship.
The Cardinals became the first NFL team to lose 700 games since the league’s establishment in 2012.
How was the Arizona Cardinals Established?
The founders started the Arizona Cardinals in 1898 as the Morgan Athletic Club, an amateur football team in Chicago, and became a charter member of the NFL on September 17, 1920.
Who are the 15 Highest Paid players on the Arizona Cardinals?
Here are the 15 highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals and details about them that you should know.
#1 – WR DeAndre Hopkins ($27.25M)
DeAndre Rashaun Hopkins is a National Football League player for the Arizona Cardinals (NFL). He fills the role of a wide receiver. Hopkins, nicknamed “Nuk,” was born on June 6, 1992, and he’s one of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
DeAndre Hopkins agreed to a four-year, $7.68 million contract with the Texans, including a guaranteed $6.18 million and a $3.98 million signing bonus.
Hopkins signed a two-year, $54.5 million contract extension with the Cardinals on September 8, 2020, and was selected NFC Offensive Player of the Week for his efforts in Week 10 of the season.
Hopkins concluded the 2020 season with 115 catches for 1,407 yards and six touchdown receptions. With 115 catches, he broke Larry Fitzgerald’s prior team record for a single season.
Since joining the Cardinals, he has had an average salary of $27.25M and may continue the streak if he continues to perform at optimum levels.
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#2 – LT D.J. Humphries ($21M)
D.J. Humphries went to Mallard Creek High School in Charlotte, NC, and was chosen a first-team high school All-American by USA Today, ESPN, Rivals.com, MaxPreps, and Sports Illustrated. He started all four seasons and did not allow a sack over his last three years of high school.
He is a spokesman for the NFL’s Fuel Up To Play 60 initiative, which he co-created with the Arizona Dairy Council. Humphries grew raised in Union, South Carolina, where he married Briyana during the 2020 offseason. They have a boy named Dash and a daughter named Nova.
According to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport, the organization revealed that the Pro Bowler has inked a three-year contract extension through the 2025 season for $66.8 million overall with $34 million guaranteed and $21 million in Year 1.
#3 – DE J.J. Watt ($15.9M)
JJ Watt is a professional football player with the Arizona Cardinals in the United States. He participated in hockey, basketball, baseball, and track and field competitions while at school. He eventually focused on football, playing for ‘Central Michigan’ and ‘Wisconsin’ in college.
When he is not on the field, he devotes his time to charities. He established the ‘Justin J. Watt Foundation,’ which gives chances to youngsters after they finish school.
J.J. Watt agreed to terms with the Cardinals on a two-year, $31 million contract in March 2021. He’d played his whole career for the Texans.
#4 – S Budda Baker ($14.78M)
Baker was a safety, running back, and return specialist on three consecutive 14-0 teams at Bellevue High School. He won three consecutive 3A state championships.
Baker started all 40 games he played in during his three seasons at Washington, totaling 200 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss, 4.0 sacks, five interceptions, 24 passes defended, and three forced fumbles.
As a junior in 2016, he started all 14 games and led the Huskies with 71 total tackles and 10 tackles for loss, while also adding a career-high three sacks, two interceptions, eight passes defended, and a forced fumble.
Baker was selected by the Cardinals in the second round (36th overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft after being traded up nine spots (from 45th to 36th). On 8/25/20, he agreed to terms on a four-year extension that will keep him with the Cardinals through the 2024 season.
#5 – TE Zach Ertz ($13.30M)
On Sunday, Ertz agreed to terms with the Cardinals on a three-year, $31.65 million contract.
He caught 56 of 81 targets for 574 yards and three touchdowns in 11 games with the Cardinals. The deal keeps the 31-year-old tight end among the highest-paid tight ends in the league.
He only had an 18-189-2 line on 31 targets when he arrived in Arizona, so his final numbers represent both a significant contribution to a better passing game and a clear indication that his skills haven’t deteriorated.
An injury to DeAndre Hopkins, who missed eight of the final ten games, including the playoffs, was the biggest factor in Ertz’s comeback.
With Hopkins out, Kyler Murray relied heavily on Ertz, particularly during a Week 15-18 stretch in which he received 43 targets and eventually tied the franchise record for tight end catches in a single season with 56.
#6 – C Rodney Hudson ($12.61M)
Rodney Hudson is a professional football player who was born in Mobile, Alabama on July 12, 1989. Hudson stands 6 feet 2 inches tall.
Rodney Hudson attended B. C. Rain High School and played football there. He formerly played for the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders.
Hudson’s career accomplishments include two Pro Bowls, the Pro Football Writers Association, three first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference selections, two first-team All-American selections, and the Jacobs Blocking Trophy.
Hudson is in the second year of a three-year $30 million contract, and the Cardinals got some good news on Monday when it was announced that center Rodney Hudson will be back for the next season.
#7 – G Justin Pugh ($11.85M)
Justin David Pugh was born on August 15, 1990, in Holland, Pennsylvania, USA. He will be 31 years old in 2022.
Justin Pugh (footballer) is a well-known offensive lineman for the National Football League’s Arizona Cardinals (NFL).
Pugh had previously attended Council Rock South High School in Holland, Pennsylvania.
Pugh signed a five-year, $45 million contract with the Arizona Cardinals on March 17, 2018. Before suffering a knee injury in Week 10, he started seven games at right guard.
#8 – QB Kyler Murray ($11.39M)
Kyler Murray has gradually become a household name that every football fan is aware of. Murray was selected first overall by the Arizona Cardinals three years ago and has demonstrated MVP potential.
He had 14,515 total yards (10,386 passing; 4,129 rushings) and 186 total touchdowns (117 passing, 69 rushings). Murray makes over $11 million in earnings and that makes him one of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
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#9 – LB Isaiah Simmons($9.5M)
Isaiah Simmons (born July 26, 1998) is a National Football League linebacker for the Arizona Cardinals (NFL).
He revealed his intention to enter the 2020 NFL Draft after graduating in December 2019 with a degree in sports communication.
The Cardinals selected him in the first round (8th overall) in the 2020 NFL Draft out of Clemson, and he has started all 33 games in his first two seasons.
In his career, he has 159 tackles, eight tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, seven QB hits, two interceptions, nine passes defended, five forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery. His deal with the Arizona Cardinals was a $12 million deal with $9 million as salary.
#10 – LB Devon Kennard ($9.08M)
He was a highly successful prep athlete at Desert Vista (Phoenix, AZ) High School, earning Super Prep All-America, Prep Star All-America, USA TODAY second-team All-USA, ESPN 150, Super Prep Elite 50, Prep Star Dream Team, and Sporting News Top 100 honors.
He sustained a season-ending knee injury three games into his senior season in 2008, despite earning first-team All-American accolades and leading the Thunder to a spot in the 2007 Arizona state 5-A championship game as a junior with 111 tackles and 24.0 sacks.
Devon Kennard is a philanthropist, businessman, and professional athlete. He presently plays linebacker for the Arizona Cardinals in the NFL, owns a real estate portfolio of over 50 properties, and teaches others how to create generational wealth.
Kennard has a $9 million deal with the Arizona Cardinals and that puts him in a good spot on this list
#11 – LB Zaven Collins ($5.64M)
Zaven Collins went to Hominy (OK) High School and played quarterback, linebacker, and safety while also graduating as valedictorian with a 4.0 GPA. He is a four-year starter on both offense and defense, and as a senior, he led Hominy to the Class A state championship.
They went 41-12 in his four seasons, including a 14-0 season as a senior; he rushed for 4,084 yards and 54 touchdowns and tossed for another 3,056 yards and 32 touchdowns.
Zaven makes almost $6 million in salaries and that makes him one of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
#12 – K Matt Prater ($4.5M)
Matthew Phillip Prater (born August 10, 1984) is an American football placekicker for the National Football League’s Arizona Cardinals (NFL).
From 2013 to 2021, he owned the NFL record for the longest field goal (64 yards) and presently owns the NFL record for most 50+ yard field goals in a career.
Prater’s cap hit for 2022 is $4.5 million, which is presently the ninth-highest among all kickers in the NFL and one of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
#13 – LB Markus Golden ($2.5M)
Markus Golden is in his second season with the Cardinals after being drafted in the second round in 2015.
Golden has three sacks in nine games with the Cardinals before signing a two-year, $5 million contract with $2.5 million guaranteed in 2021. Last year, the guarantees were a $1.5 million signing bonus and a $1 million basic salary making him one of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
Markus’ deal also featured a potential $2 million in incentives every year for various levels of sacks: $250,000 for 6.0, $250,000 for 8.0, $500,000 for 10.0, and $1 million for 13.0.
#14 – CB Byron Murphy ($3.50M)
Byron played his final two prep seasons (2014-15) at Saguaro (Scottsdale, AZ) High School after two seasons at Marcos de Niza (Tempe, AZ).
Byron Murphy was a finalist for the Lockheed Martin Air Defender of the Year award (top DB in the nation), and now he’s with a team that has made him one of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals selected him in the second round (33rd overall) of the 2019 NFL Draft out of Washington, where he played college football with All-Pro S Budda Baker. In his first three NFL seasons, he led the Cardinals in pass defense twice (2019, 2021).
#15 – LB Jalen Thompson ($2.62M)
Jalen played football for Downey (CA) High School (2014-15) and La Serna (Whittier, CA) High School (2012-13), earning All-CIF Southern Section, All-San Gabriel Valley League, and Long Beach Press-Telegram All-Area Dream Team honors as a senior for the Vikings after intercepting five passes and averaging 20.2 yards per catch.
In three seasons with Arizona (2019-21), he participated in 37 games (25 starts) and collected 197 tackles, four interceptions, 11 passes defended, three tackles for loss, and three quarterback hits.
Thompson makes over $2 million in salaries and that makes him one of the highest paid players in the Arizona Cardinals.
The highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals are players who have a recorded history of playing the game with passion and delivering the right results when needed. Some of the highest paid players on the Arizona Cardinals also feature on the list of the highest paid players in the NFL.
Yes. The founders created the Arizona Cardinals as St. Louis Cardinals and it stayed that way from 1960 to 1987. The franchise relocated to Phoenix in 1988 and changed its name to the Phoenix Cardinals. The team’s name was changed to the Arizona Cardinals in 1994.
The 2021 Arizona Cardinals and the 1974 St. Louis Cardinals have the two best starts to a Cardinals season, both going 7-0. The 1966 St. Louis Cardinals had the third greatest start to a season, starting with 5 victories.
The Arizona Cardinals have played 63 seasons in all. Their first season took place in 1960, and their most recent season took place in 2022.
The Arizona Cardinals have only played in one Super Bowl, in 2008.