At a consistory approving the canonisation of seven saints, Francis also "promoted" eight prelates from the rank of cardinal deacons to cardinal priests.
There are three categories of cardinals: deacons, priests, and bishops. This ranking has historical roots but is - except for the cardinal bishops - of no importance.
Currently, there are 13 cardinal bishops, three Eastern patriarchs, 176 Cardinal priests and 33 Cardinal deacons. The eight new cardinal priests are Burke, Amato, Sarah, Monterisi, Koch, Piacenza, Ravasi, Brandmüller.
Fobbing off the "Conservatives" with booby prizes has a long tradition in the Vatican. A striking example of this was the January 2001 consistory when John Paul II made 44 (!) new cardinals of which four were Germans: the two heresiarchs Kasper and Lehmann who at the time were relatively young (67 and 64) and went on causing big havoc in the Church. In order to deceive the German "conservatives," John Paul II added two elderly "conservatives" Joachim Degenhard, then 75, and Leo Scheffczyk, then 81, who both died shortly after.
This was the consistory which also produced the Cardinals McCarrick and Bergoglio who are both still alive.