Cardinals give leading tackler Daryl Washington new contract

Washington won’t be leaving Phoenix anytime soon. (US Presswire)

Coming off his team-leading 111-tackle performance in 2011, Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington has agreed to terms on a new contract that will keep him in Arizona through the 2017 season.

Though terms weren’t released, Washington originally was scheduled to make $540,000 this season and $575,000 in 2012, the final year of his rookie contract. But his performance last season -- he also recorded five sacks, two interceptions and seven pass break-ups -- prompted Arizona to lock him up for a long time.

Combined with Calais Campbell’s five-year, $55 million deal that was signed in May, and it’s clear the team is trying to keep its young defensive core intact.

“Two things that successful teams do consistently is build through the draft and keep their core players,” Cardinals general manager Rod Graves said in a statement. “Daryl has certainly lived up to the potential we all saw in him coming out of TCU in 2010 and he has established himself as one of the top young defensive players in the NFL. I know he feels, like we do, that his best football is still ahead of him and we’re thrilled that this deal gives him the opportunity to achieve that with the Cardinals.”

All of it should be enough to make Washington turn somersaults.

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