Arizona Cardinals inside linebacker Jordan Hicks (58), shown Jan. 2, 2022, signed with the team in 2019 and recorded 100-plus tackles in all three of his seasons in Arizona. File Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo
March 9 (UPI) -- The Arizona Cardinals released starting inside linebacker and defensive captain Jordan Hicks on Wednesday, the team announced.
Hicks played at a high level for the Cardinals last season, notching 116 total tackles, four sacks, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries. The Cardinals, however, are making the decision to give fellow linebacker Zaven Collins -- Arizona's first-round pick last year -- more playing time.
The Cardinals previously told Collins that he would be their starter last season after taking him with the No. 16 overall pick in the 2021 draft. Hicks later admitted he was angered when the team initially told him he had lost his starting job to Collins.
Hicks subsequently demanded a trade, but a deal never materialized. The seven-year NFL veteran ended up starting all 17 regular-season games for the Cardinals in 2021.
By getting released now, Hicks is free to sign with another team before free agency officially begins next week. The roster move saves the Cardinals about $6.5 million in salary-cap space, but it also leaves $3 million in dead money.
Hicks signed with the Cardinals in 2019 and compiled 100-plus tackles in each of his three seasons in Arizona. He had a career-high 149 tackles in the 2019 campaign, his first with the Cardinals.
The 29-year-old Hicks spent the first four seasons of his career with the Philadelphia Eagles. Over 92 career games, he has recorded 637 tackles, 10.5 sacks, four forced fumbles, nine fumble recoveries, 11 interceptions and 34 passes defensed.