TEMPE, Ariz. — It didn’t take long for safety D.J. Swearinger to find a new team.
The Arizona Cardinals claimed the former Washington Redskins defensive back on Tuesday, a day after Washington released him. Swearinger broke the news first with an Instagram post.
Swearinger played for the Cardinals in late 2015 and 2016. He was signed to the Cards’ practice squad on Dec. 2, 2015 and a week later was promoted to the active roster. In 2016, playing on a $1.671 million tender, Swearinger turned in one of his best NFL seasons with 65 tackles, two sacks and a then-career-high three interceptions.
Washington released Swearinger two days after he ripped defensive coordinator Greg Manusky’s playcalling in a loss at Tennessee. Swearinger first told 106.7 The Fan about his release during his paid weekly appearance; sources within the organization confirmed the move. Swearinger said coach Jay Gruden told him he was released in a brief meeting Monday morning.
A source told ESPN that the decision to release Swearinger was an easy one because he had been warned several times about his critical remarks about the team.
Gruden had said in a conference call Sunday with reporters that he was “quite disappointed” in Swearinger. Gruden had previously talked with Swearinger when the coach felt his player had gone too far with his opinions.
Swearinger wrote in his Instagram post that he thought he’d re-sign with the Cardinals in 2017, but his agent landed him a three-year deal with Washington worth $13.5 million with $9 million in guaranteed money.
Swearinger will join a 3-12 Cardinals team that is one loss away from securing the first overall pick in the 2019 NFL draft. Arizona plays at Seattle on Sunday.
ESPN’s Washington Redskins reporter John Keim contributed to this report.