I think it’s sometimes only one or two players you could be away (from improving). I think you can quickly rebuild in free agency and then with the draft picks we have — we’ll have a number of draft picks. We’ll have opportunities to improve this roster. My attitude and my mindset is we’ll have a chance every year moving forward.From a cap perspective, what kind of shape are you in?I think we’ll be in a good position. I mean, we’ll make some tough decisions as well to free some space. (Director of football operations) Mike Disner does a phenomenal job with me trying to eliminate as much dead money as you can. Again, we’ll have opportunities to be aggressive not only in free agency but the draft and then moving forward. Some of the better additions that we’ve made over the years have been in the late part of the season. Whether it’s (cornerback) Tramon Williams this year or (linebacker) Josh Bynes, that’s sort of been one of the better things we’ve done as we’ve self-evaluated.After the bells and whistles come off some of these big-name free agents, you watch the film, you evaluate and you see where key players can make positive additions to your club. What have you seen from (safety) Tyrann Mathieu this year that affects your decision for keeping him for 2018?Well, I think the one thing is he’s flying around and he’s … the thing that you love about Tyrann is his instincts, his ability to see things before they happen. The fact that he’s continuing to get healthier and healthier, and he’s improving I think the confidence and all those sort of things, are coming together at the right time. – / 13 Four of our five starters yesterday were not our starters at the beginning of the season, which is always difficult. Those guys have to step up, too. Those are the expectations you always have to have in my position. We’ll just continue to get back to work tomorrow and put our best foot forward against the Giants next week.I don’t know if this is the kind of thought process a general manager considers but this is a media guy’s point of view in looking at a team like the Cardinals, and that is, you have to decide how far away you are. And if you’re far away, it’s quarterback of the future. If you’re not that far away, then it’s quarterback that might be on someone else’s roster or it’s, ‘Carson, hey, please come back.’ Do you look ahead right now and look at your franchise and say the quarterback of the future is on the roster, is on somebody else’s roster or is playing college football right now?I just think that there is going to be a lot of opportunities to get better next year when I look at the big picture. We’ll certainly be aggressive in every one of those decisions. I will say this: I think you have the opportunity to do what the Rams have done. Look at how they have improved. I think it’s a year-to-year thing here. I never want to approach another season with the mindset that we’re building or it’s a step back. That’s not fair to your fans, it’s not fair to our organization. I think you have to do everything you can to try to improve your roster, and so-to-speak, go for it every year. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact LISTEN: Steve Keim, Cardinals GM Again, as an organization, we’ll go through the conversations moving forward internally but this isn’t the time or the place for me to talk about the moves that I feel like we need to make.Steve, is it safe to say the status quo will not be in 2018, that you’re willing to make big changes?I would say that’s an understatement.As you look forward, there’s also a lot of things that are out of your control. (Head coach) Bruce Arians, (quarterback) Carson Palmer, even the extension with (receiver) Larry Fitzgerald but he hasn’t said officially, ‘I’m 100 percent playing in 2018.’ What questions do you have to get answered, and when do you have to have those questions answered to know going forward that you’re going after a free agent or the quarterback of the future is in the draft? All those other things you are in control of, when do you need to know the things are aren’t in your control?As soon as the season’s over, we’ll sit down and have conversations and a lot of those things will play themselves out. Regardless of the circumstance, we’ll be prepared for anything that may happen. It’s no different from 2013 when I took over, and (president) Michael (Bidwill) and I hired Bruce Arians and we rolled up our sleeves and got to work and, again, produced three seasons of double-digit (win) teams we were proud of. It’s Keim Time.When you look at Blaine Gabbert, how do you assess him?I mean, I think it’s a number of things. This is one of the games that I think I’ll probably look back and point to as one of the more frustrating games not only this season but of my tenure as a general manager. It’s really difficult to process the lack of execution. I didn’t see a lack of effort, which has been a reoccurring theme. Our team continues to fight and play hard but so many times when there were situations where it was an overthrown ball, or a dropped pass, or missed block and you know, again, the red zone woes were concerning. There were many, many plays to be made and not only just Blaine’s fault but there were many others to be blamed in the process. The guys just weren’t getting it done.Again, it was a frustrating game — disappointed. The fact that we were eliminated from playoff contention, you know, again, is a disappointment and I apologize to our fans, everybody in our organization and moving forward we have a lot of work to do. It’s going to be a busy offseason. We’ll continue to evaluate this team the last two games. I promise, the product on the field in 2018, we’ll finish much stronger. No, no. But I will say that I think anybody will play a little better with David Johnson. It’s unfortunate to lose such a quality player so early in the season. But I will give credit yesterday to (running back) Kerwynn Williams and I thought even Elijhaa Penny stepped up and had some big runs and showed his physicality between the tackles — he had fairly nifty feet for a big man. Both of those guys did some nice things. It’s nice to see them step up. But yeah, I think that David Johnson makes a lot of people look better because of his ability to create mismatches in the passing games, his natural hands, his run-after-the-catch. It’s just, again, an unfortunate thing to go through the injuries we incurred this year, but you’ll never hear me use that as an excuse.Here comes the obligatory offensive line question this year: How did they play in general and in particular, (first-time starting left tackle) Will Holden and (right guard) Evan Boehm?Yeah, they played OK in the run game. I thought we did some nice things running the football between the 20s. But at the end of the day, not good enough. From time to time, there was some protection issues in the passing game. Again, there’s no doubt, you know, we’ll continue to try to improve that area moving forward. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Steve, when you have this many injuries, how difficult is it to evaluate the talent on the field?You can probably look at it and say it’s easier because you’re not evaluating your frontline starters. You’re looking at guys who in most circumstances would not be playing for you on Sundays, so you have a chance to look at some guys getting some action for the first time, or guys getting action for their first time for several games in a row, where you can judge them based on their body of work and potentially help you make decisions moving forward in 2018.As you were flying home from Washington, as you now know, it’s all about 2018. What’s the number one thing on your mind right now that you have to get done for 2018 to be able to back up the promise that was very strong that you just gave to the fans?Well, I think it’s one of those things that there’s again a lot of work to be done this offseason. I rarely think about the things that work — usually the things that constantly race through my mind are the things that didn’t work or the areas that I need to improve personally. Again, I take it personal. It’s one of those things that keeps me up at night and it’s one of those things that really, again, fuels the fire for me to continue to improve this roster. 4 Comments Share Top Stories Your browser does not support the audio element. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo To me, it’s always fun and exciting to get back to the grind and get back to building a football team. Again, just disappointed we fell short in 2017.(Receiver) Brittan Golden, what can you tell us about Brit?Well, I don’t know the exact details. I do know that it was a pretty severe (broken arm) injury and highly doubtful that he will return this year. Our thoughts and prayers are out to him. He has been a really good core player for us, not only on special teams but just one of those guys that sort of flies under the radar and gets it done with not only his toughness but his intangibles as well.Speaking of IR, who do you want to bring off of IR, or is there somebody you want to bring off IR for the last two games?At this point, again, a guy has to be completely healthy for us to consider taking him off of the IR. So you know, we’ll continue to meet with (head trainer) Tom Reed and our medical staff and see if there are any opportunities. There could be a possibility that we go through the entire (rest of) the season and there is nobody else to return.This is something John Clayton said to us two weeks ago. I want to give him credit, if you like this idea — you can make fun of him if you don’t — he said something very interesting about bringing back David Johnson, not for the point of David Johnson (wrist) and obviously as you said, he’s got to be 100 percent healthy. But to evaluate Blaine Gabbert with David Johnson behind him, would that matter to you at all? Would that go into your decision-making at all, to bring someone off IR, just to play with Blaine Gabbert? Now that the Arizona Cardinals are officially out of the playoff picture following a loss to the Washington Redskins, general manager Steve Keim has put his full attention into 2018. Long story short: Expect big changes.Keim joins Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station every Monday morning during the season, and this week, he addressed what he calls one of the most frustrating losses during his time as Cardinals GM, the play from quarterback Blaine Gabbert and more.