Zach Ertz Says He Would 'Love' to Sign New Cardinals Contract in Free Agency

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 18, 2022

Arizona Cardinals tight end Zach Ertz (86) runs against the Los Angeles Rams during the second half of an NFL wild-card playoff football game in Inglewood, Calif., Monday, Jan. 17, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill

Zach Ertz will be a free agent this offseason, but he has a clear interest in returning to the Arizona Cardinals.

"I still feel like we have unfinished business as a team," Ertz told reporters Tuesday. "I would love to be a part of it. But that just might be out of my control."

The Cardinals finished the regular season with an 11-6 record, but they were eliminated with a 34-11 first-round loss to the Los Angeles Rams.

Ertz was traded to Arizona in October after spending the first eight seasons of his career with the Philadelphia Eagles.

After a slow start to the season in six games with Philadelphia, Ertz emerged as a reliable target for Kyler Murray with the Cardinals. He finished with 56 catches for 574 yards and three touchdowns in 11 games after the trade, averaging 52.2 yards per game.

The veteran only averaged 31.1 yards per game with the Eagles prior to the deal.

Ertz was especially valuable down the stretch as Arizona dealt with injuries, catching at least five passes in six of the final seven games of the regular season.

The 31-year-old will hope this leads to a new deal as the Cardinals look to make a deeper run in 2022.

Ertz was one of the top tight ends in football during his prime, earning three straight Pro Bowls from 2017 to 2019. He had at least 70 receptions and 800 yards in every season from 2015 to 2019.

An injury-plagued 2020 campaign took him out of the spotlight, but Ertz could be a hot commodity in the free-agent market after a strong second half of 2021.