Free agent Qasim Mitchell, who didn't play in the NFL in 2006 but whose resume includes 16 regular-season starts, has signed a one-year contract with the Arizona Cardinals and will be the latest candidate to vie for playing time on the team's revamped offensive line.
The deal with Mitchell, believed to be for the NFL minimum salary of $595,000, came as the Cardinals on Sunday completed a weekend minicamp under first-year head coach Ken Whisenhunt. League rules permit teams to audition free agents during minicamp sessions and Mitchell spent all three days working with the Cardinals' squad.
Mitchell, 27, is the third veteran lineman to sign with the Cardinals in the offseason. He joins unrestricted free agents Al Johnson and Mike Gandy, who are expected to start for the Cardinals at center and tackle, respectively.
Arizona is seeking to identify its five best linemen under new assistant coach Russ Grimm, and also to build depth. It is not yet known where Mitchell might fit into the mix, but he will be provided a chance in training camp to carve out a spot.
Originally signed by the Cleveland Browns as an undrafted college free agent in 2002, the former North Carolina A&T standout spent his rookie season on injured reserve. He then signed with Chicago in 2003 and started 14 games for the Bears in 2004. He appeared in three games with the Bears in 2005, but was released by the Carolina Panthers last summer.
In all, Mitchell, a power blocker with surprisingly good feet, has appeared in 22 games.
The Cardinals also signed free agent tight end Troy Bienemann, who worked out for the team during the minicamp, to a one-year contract. A former Washington State standout, Bienemann was briefly with the New Orleans Saints last spring before suffering a serious knee injury.
Len Pasquarelli is a senior writer for ESPN.com.