While the Cardinals have said they would like to re-sign Drake, this move still comes as a little bit of a surprise given the resources already allocated to the running back position on the team.
The transition tag for running backs should be a hair over $10 million fully guaranteed for the 2020 season. Other teams can negotiate with Drake while the Cardinals have the right of first refusal to any offer sheet, though they won’t receive draft pick compensation if decline to match.
Drake, 26, is a former third-round pick of the Dolphins back in 2016. Miami traded him to the Cardinals before the 2019 deadline in return for a conditional sixth-round pick that can become a fifth-rounder.
Drake just finished the final year of his four-year, $3.5 million contract and stands to make a base salary of $810,000 for the 2019 season. He was in line to be an unrestricted free agent in 2020.
In 2019, Drake appeared in 14 games for the Dolphins and Cardinals and rushed for 817 yards on 170 carries (4.8 YPC) with eight touchdowns to go along with 50 receptions for 385 yards receiving.