Cardinals Release Disgruntled Running Back Edgerrin James

Kevin Roberts@BreakingKevinSenior Writer IApril 29, 2009

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 11:  Running back Edgerrin James #32 of the Arizona Cardinals against the Oakland Raiders on August 11, 2007 at McAfee Coliseum in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Greg Trott/Getty Images)

In Edgerrin James' mind, in Ken Wisenhunt's mind, hell, in everyone's mind—it's about time.

We all know by now that Edgerrin James status on the Cardinals' roster was simply a facade—that Wisenhunt was just keeping him around as an insurance policy.

After seeing Tim Hightower rise and fall faster than a child television star, as well as J.J. Arrington bolt for Denver, wouldn't he play the caution card, too?

Regardless, Edgerrin James is gone and on the verge of being forgotten as a Cardinal, despite being a huge reason why their offense finally found some balance during their historic run to the Super Bowl.

After voicing his displeasure with his contract, and then with his status with the team, it was truly only a matter of time before it happened. And that "time" came Tuesday, just days after the Cardinals snagged Ohio State's Chris "Beanie" Wells in the NFL Draft.

While the Cardinals seem to have found not only their replacement for the departing James, they also appear to have found a gem late in the first round-a bruiser with good speed that could terrorize opposing defenses for years to come, while contributing to a supposed well-balanced attack.

However, while both the Cardinals and Edgerrin James part ways and begin new journeys, one has to wonder which side wins in this battle. Who will walk away from this divorce and go into next season with a sigh of relief, possibly a smile, and with endless possibilities awaiting them?

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Honestly, quite possibly both of them.

But if we're being realistic, as fans, as writers, and as people that, just like James, have had to move on from jobs or difficult situations, it'll be hard to find a better home.

It will be even harder to find a starting gig.

Despite rushing for over 1,100 yards in his first two seasons as a Cardinal, James lost his starting job to rookie Tim Hightower, which in turn brought on the demand to be released.

Late in the season, when Hightower and the rest of the offense was ineffective, James was inserted back into the line-up, and finished the regular season with a 100-yard game on only 16 carries against the Seattle Seahawks.

He then took that momentum, as did the entire team, into the playoffs, and ran for at least 57 yards in three of four games, including two 73-yard efforts.

He may not have been dazzling, or even close to what he used to be, but at 30-years old, James showed he still could get the job done-despite being upset.

Now comes the tough part: Proving to one of the 31 other teams that he can still do what he did in the post-season over a 16-game season.