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Fitzgerald Signs One Year-Deal To Remain A Cardinal, Play In 2019
Larry Fitzgerald will play again for the Cardinals, for at least one more season. The Cardinals announced this morning that the veteran wide receiver has decided to return for the 2019 season by signing a one-year contract this week with the team, ending for now the speculation about his future.

As ESPN's Adam Schefter put it: "Fitzgerald will enter his 16th NFL season at age 36. He will help break in new head coach Kliff Kingsbury, be there to try to help quarterback Josh Rosen and continue to be an example to all."

"No player has meant more to this franchise or this community than Larry Fitzgerald," team president Michael Bidwill said in a statement. "In my discussions with him, it was clear that he is as driven and passionate as ever. We are thrilled he'll be back in 2019."

Fitzgerald, who will turn 36 at the end of August, remains the top receiver on the team and a crucial leader at a position that is young and inexperienced. While his statistics sunk in 2018, it was due to the entire unit’s struggles more than Fitzgerald’s own dip in play. He still led the team in receptions (69), receiving yards (734) and receiving touchdowns (6).

Fitzgerald has consistently said he wanted to take time to decide if he wanted to return for another year – as he had done the previous two seasons – but even with all the difficulties the Cardinals had this season, he sounded like someone leaning toward a return.

“I've dedicated my life to it," Fitzgerald said prior to the season finale. “I started playing tackle football when I was 6 years old on the 8-year-old team. This time of the year this is all I have done. When you dedicate your life to something, put in this much time and effort, I wouldn't say I need it, but I really enjoy it.

“To be able to roll out of bed every day, I don't have to set my alarm clock. My feet hit the ground and I know it's time to go to work. I'm excited about it and I understand this is something I've always wanted to do.”

Making the announcement now also provides clarity for Fitzgerald as he inevitably spends time during Super Bowl week doing multiple interviews for various sponsors.

According to's Kevin Patra, "He might not be the game-changing, athletically dominant performer of his early years, but Fitzgerald is still a reliable threat and will certainly make life easier on Rosen."

As's Darren Urban notes, Fitzgerald comes back to a team with its third head coach in three years, although the addition of the newly-hired Kingsbury should boost the passing offense considerably -- and help Fitzgerald trend back toward the production he had been at despite his veteran status.

Prior to 2018, Fitzgerald had posted three straight 100-catch seasons.

Fitzgerald’s return means more records will fall in his name. In his first regular-season appearance this September, he will become the player with the most games played in franchise history. Fitzgerald is currently tied with former kicker Jim Bakken at 234. Fitzgerald also has 227 straight games with a reception, second in NFL history to Jerry Rice’s 274.

After surpassing Terrell Owens for the second-most receiving yards in NFL history this year (Fitz is now at 16,279), he has a chance to catch Tony Gonzalez for the second-most receptions all-time. Fitzgerald, at 1,303 receptions, needs 23 catches to make that happen.

Rice, in first place in both categories, is likely unreachable in both catches (1,549) and yards (22,895).

Fitzgerald joins a receiving corps that includes second-year players Christian Kirk, Trent Sherfield, Jalen Tolliver and Malachi Dupre, as well as third-year wideouts Chad Williams and Pharoh Cooper. The Cardinals added CFL product Bryant Mitchell after the season. J.J. Nelson is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent.