NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Monday that the Cards will place the transition tag on Kenyan Drake, per a source informed of the situation.
The team later confirmed the move.
The transition tag allows Arizona the chance to match any offer Drake gets in free agency. If the Cardinals decline to match, they would get no compensation.
The estimated transition tag for running backs is expected to come in at around $8 million.
After withering away in Miami, Drake found new life in Arizona following a midseason trade. In eight games with the Cardinals, Drake rushed for 643 yards (5.2 yards a carry) with eight touchdowns. He added another 171 yards on 28 receptions.
A perfect fit in Kliff Kingsbury's system, Drake's versatility made him a movable chess piece once he got to the desert.
Transition tagging Drake is a surprising move for Arizona but keeps their options open to possibly hanging on to their best running back from last season.