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Cardinals Bring Back L.J. Collier Before Free Agency

Defensive lineman re-signs after playing just one game before injury

L.J. Collier signs his new contract on Friday.
L.J. Collier signs his new contract on Friday.

The Cardinals and L.J. Collier are going to try it again.

The veteran defensive lineman, who signed a one-year contract last offseason but hurt his biceps muscle in the opener at Washington to end his season, re-signed with the team on another one-year contract Friday morning ahead of free agency next week.

The Cardinals want to upgrade their defensive line corps but they also need numbers. Collier has re-signed but they still have Leki Fotu, Carlos Watkins and Jonathan Ledbetter scheduled to become free agents. Ledbetter is rehabbing a late-season ACL tear.

Collier is a former first-round pick of the Seahawks who arrived last season to try to rehab his career. He was solid in training camp while earning a starting spot, only to have his season immediately derailed after three tackles and less than a full game.

It was the beginning of a rash of injuries on the line; Watkins also suffered a season-ending biceps injury soon after.

The need at the position is enough where GM Monti Ossenfort could still look at outside help during free agency as well as the draft next month.

DORTCH TENDERED: The Cardinals tendered an offer to wide receiver Greg Dortch, who was an exclusive rights free agent. Dortch still needs to sign the tender, but the offer means he is locked into signing with the Cardinals to return in 2024.