Kerry Rhodes Traded to Arizona Cardinals to Replace the Money-Hungry Antrel Rolle

Meet the new safety, same as the old safety -- just cheaper.

The Arizona Cardinals, just days after losing safety Antrel Rolle to the New York Giants, picked up a Big Apple replacement for the safety spot in Kerry Rhodes, who the team signed over the weekend.

Rhodes spent the last five years playing for the New York Jets, where he was given a five-year contract extension two years ago. Under that contract, the Cards will end up paying Rhodes about $13 million over the next four years, as well as a $2 million roster bonus he'll collect on Friday.

All those zeros at the end of Rhodes' paycheck may seem pricey -- he is still only playing football -- but it's a fraction of what the Cardinals would have had to shell out to hang on to Rolle.

Rolle was asking for about $8 million a year for five years, something the Cardinals weren't about to cough up. The G-Men, on the other hand, seemed happy to spend that kind of coin on an up-and-coming star and almost met his demands by signing Rolle to a five-year, $37 million contract.

Despite the (ahem) bargain price for Rhodes, he could be a good replacement for Rolle.

The two are the same age, about the same weight, and had similar 2009 stats. Rhodes is three inches taller than Rolle, which could come in handy in any "go up and get it" situations with receivers.

Rhodes had three interceptions last year, in comparison to Rolles' four but has been dubbed "too Hollywood" by many of his New York teammates for some off the field antics. Almost simultaneously, his performance on the field has suffered since his second season, when he put up 99 tackles, five sacks, four interceptions, and three forced fumbles.

Hollywood or not, we're giving the guy the benefit of the doubt and consider the addition of Rhodes a smart replacement for the talented but pricey Rolle.

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James King
Contact: James King