TEMPE, Ariz. -- If it was up to Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians, all of the team's 19 pending unrestricted free agents will be re-signed.
With less than two months until the start of free agency, whether that will happen, however, is yet to be seen.
"Hopefully we get them all back," Arians said. "The dollars will have to add up with the cap. That's [general manager] Steve [Keim's] and [director of football administration] Mike's [Disner] job. And they do a great job with it.
"We've already prioritized our list and we will try to get as many of those guys as possible."
Arians has already said the team will franchise outside linebacker Chandler Jones if a long-term deal can't be reached. It's also expected that right guard Evan Mathis will retire, leaving Arizona with 17 unrestricted free agents to decide upon: RB Andre Ellington, RB Chris Johnson, RB Stepfan Taylor, WR Jeremy Ross, TE Jermaine Gresham, C A.Q. Shipley, OL Earl Watford, OL Taylor Boggs, DT Calais Campbell, DT Frostee Rucker, OLB Alex Okafor, ILB Kevin Minter, ILB Sio Moore, CB Marcus Cooper, CB Mike Jenkins, S D.J. Swearinger and S Tony Jefferson.
The 2017 salary cap is expected to climb from $155.27 million to between $163 million and $165 million, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. The Cardinals will carry over about $4.4 million from last year, according to the NFL Players Association.
After the season, Arians said he has "no doubt" the core of the team that went 7-8-1 is still intact. He expects that some questions, such as when Mathis will officially retire, will be answered soon.
"I think the core is here and there is no doubt that we had high expectations coming into this year with the roster we had," Arians said. "Those expectations will never change. We'll set our goal to win a championship next year like we always do."