Gandhi's mock draft 2.0

Gandhi

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Once again I participated in a mock draft as the general manager of the Cardinals. The draft started nearly a month ago but I haven’t changed my mind that much since then. I will write what have changed when I get to those picks.

First, I would like to give some thoughts on my overall philosophy and strategy going in to the draft:

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I used my own Cardinals-board. I think rookie-production is way too important nowadays to simply draft a bunch of great talents, and then hope and try to coach them up to fit the scheme. That’s also why I don’t think the phrase ‘best player available’ has any relevance anymore.

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I really don’t care where ESPN, NFL Network, NFLDraftscout and the likes has players in their rankings. There are numerous reasons but the most important is that those rankings are general. My criticism are related to the first topic because those rankings doesn’t take personal fit, scheme fit, draft preference, and a lot of others variables into account.

Let me give a small example (which could be completely wrong but I think it might help me make my point):

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (drafting #1) wants a quarterback in the first round. They really liked Marcus Mariota, quarterback, Oregon in all their interviews, they really like what Marcus Mariota brings off the field, they really like what Marcus Mariota brings on the field, they feel Marcus Mariota fit their systems perfectly. Thus, Marcus Mariota is their highest ranked player overall, and their number one ranked quarterback.

The Tennessee Titans (drafting #2) wants a quarterback in the first round. They really liked Marcus Mariota in all their interviews, they really like what Marcus Mariota brings off the field, they don’t like what Marcus Mariota brings on the fields, and they don’t feel Marcus Mariota fit their systems. Thus, Marcus Mariota is their number 100 ranked player overall, and their number 10 ranked quarterback.

There is about 3.500 players in the draft (and that’s only counting players from the two highest college-divisions. In reality there is many more). The only possibly way any rankings can be realistic is if every one of those players are ranked individually in reference to every 32 teams. Now, I have never been great at math but I doubt it’s very likely those teams have all players ranked exactly the same. In fact, since those sites have analysts who’s job it is to cover all teams, and have a broad view of all things considering the draft, I would argue that many posters on this board has a better idea of what the Cardinals will do. We, the fans, know the needs, the draft tendencies, the preferences by Arians and Keim better than those analysts do. I think those reasons are why every team has invested lots of resources in their scouting departments in recent years, and why every front office-member and coach work day-and-night trying to minimize the risk of draft-failures.

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With that number of draftable players in mind, I think a player has to be really good to get drafted in any spot, and I am always looking for starters or big contributors with each pick.

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I wanted to upgrade both the linebacker corps and the running game. I think that both Mike Iupati and Sean Weatherspoon were great signing, and they could go a very long way, but I don’t think it will be enough.

Enough about that stuff – now on to the draft. Here is a link of every pick made: http://americanfootball.freeforums.org/2015-gm-mock-ii-drafttraden-t262.html

First round:


Initially I thought about multiple players at pick #24 without locking into someone. Here is some of the players that are often brought up on this board but that I didn’t think about for one second:

Cameron Erving, center, Florida State

- I like Erving, I really do, and I would be excited if he ended being the pick. Personally, I just wouldn’t use a first round pick on a player who has five games experienced at a position. That’s not good enough to me. Then there is the idea that he could play all five position on the offensive line, and I do agree with that. That just bring up another problem as I wouldn’t use a first round pick on a player that I didn’t have a specific plan with.

Melvin Gordon, running back, Wisconsin

- Honestly, I wouldn’t touch Gordon before the third round at the very earliest. He might be fast, he might be elusive, he might be a home run-threat. I just haven’t seen him break many tackles at Wisconsin, and defenders are a lot faster and stronger in the NFL. He could end up being great but I really don’t think his career in college shows anything that should justify picking him in the first round.

Eli Harold, outside linebacker, Virginia

- I like Harold. I just don’t think he’s a good fit, and I don’t think he’s talented enough that his scheme fit is not an issue like with some of the other edge rushers in this class.

I wanted to trade up if possible. I wanted to target either Dante Fowler, rush linebacker, Florida, Shane Ray, rush linebacker, Missouri, Alvin Dupree, outside linebacker, Kentucky or Trae Waynes, cornerback, Michigan State. I think any of them would be excellent addition, and that they would contribute big time already next season.

In this play I was only allowed to trade draftpicks from this year, and thus I could probably at best trade up to about the #15 spot (well, unless I traded away all my picks which I didn’t even consider), and by that time all three were selected.

Then I wanted Owamagbe Odighizuwa, outside linebacker, UCLA (sorry about the name. Many people calls him ‘Owa’ or ‘Diggy’ if that helps you) as I think he’s probably a better fit than both Fowler, Ray and Dupree but just not as talented. I’m not saying Fowler, Ray or Dupree are bad fits. I’m just saying that, to me, Odighizuwa is close to the ideal fit opposite Okafor. He was drafted three spots ahead of me, though.

I then tried to trade down, and get at least one other pick to give myself some flexibility later on in the draft but I didn’t get any offers. So, of the players available I was considering:

Preston Smith, rush linebacker, Mississippi State

- Usually I don’t use numbers at the scouting combine much. It’s at an unrealistic environment, they don’t have to worry that someone will suddenly tackle them, obviously defenders won’t stand still like the bags in the athletic drills, and there’s simply a possibility that something will go wrong and cost them some time. I watch the games, and judge from there. However, I was very surprised to see Smith’s numbers. I thought he could be a very good defensive lineman in a 3-4 base defense but after that performance, he could very well be capable of playing rush linebacker, and possible even develop into an outside linebacker. I didn’t consider him that much, simply because those thoughts were too new to me. I didn’t have a ‘sure’ feeling.

Carl Davis, defensive tackle, Iowa

- I think Davis would be a great scheme fit opposite Calais Campbell. Davis can play the run, and is a beast at rushing the passer. He could even rotate in at nose guard at times. In the end, I decided to pass on Davis as the defensive line is the one unit that I think the Cardinals are extremely deep at. Now it also include Matt Shaughnessy whom I think is a much better fit than Kareem Martin.

Eddie Goldman, nose guard, Florida State

- He could probably be great in the middle of the defensive line. I just don’t think the coaches value the position enough to use a first round pick at it.

Todd Gurley, running back, Georgia

- I really don’t like to pick running backs in the first round. I think the blocking makes a running back look great more than the other way around. That said, I think Gurley could be a home run hit-pick, and that he could make the entire offense that much better. If everything works out he could potentially be the offense franchise player in some years when Fitzgerald and Palmer retire. At the end of the day, only his ACL surgeries kept me from selecting him. I would be extremely thrilled if he did become the selection as it would obviously mean that the team’s medical staff had cleared him.

My selection:


Stephone Anthony, inside linebacker, Clemson

- He’s a thumper who can cover. He’s big, he’s fast, he’s agile, he’s versatile, he’s got the length Arians and Keim covets. I thought the Cardinals were criminally thin at inside linebacker last season, and since then they have added one player (Weatherspoon) and lost one player (Foote). On top of that, Sean Weatherspoon does have some injury concerns, and then there’s the thing with Daryl Washington. If those two plays to their top-level most of the season it’s great but it’s also a lot to hope for. Stephone Anthony can erase some of those concerns. I also think he can be an every down player.

About a year ago I had a hunch that the Cardinals could pick Deone Buccanon (http://www.arizonasportsfans.com/vb/f4/gandhi-mock-draft-vol-2-a-207085.html?highlight=Gandhi). I have the same kind of hunch regarding Anthony. I just think if you connect the dots from everything draft-related that Keim and Arians has said since the season ended you would come to the conclusion that Anthony could very well be the pick.

Second round:


Once again, I wanted to trade down. I didn’t really think about trading up. I got an offer from the New Orleans Saints of their third- and fourth round-pick. I thought that was close to an insult, and I gave a counteroffer of their two (they previously had acquired an extra) third, their fourth and their sixth round-pick. After all, I was trading down 20 spots so I didn’t think my offer was that crazy. He rejected, I didn’t want to continue negotiating, and that was it.

Of the players available I considered:

Clive Walford, tight end, Miami

- I don’t think tight end is that big of a need, and that was the reason I didn’t go with Walford. That said, I think he could at least be a pretty good rotation-player with Troy Niklas and Darren Fells. I don’t have much faith in John Carlson. Bruce Arians once said that his preferred tight end was the Heath Miller-type. Walford is that type.

Cedric Ogbuehi, offensive guard, Texas A&M

- I didn’t pick Ogbuehi because he probably won’t contribute at all as a rookie. He tore his ACL in their bowl game. He has experience at both tackle spots as well as right guard, and I think he was by far best on the right side where he was downright dominant most times. I think Ogbuehi would have been a surefire first round pick if he hadn’t been injured, and I think that if some team is willing to wait while he recovers they could be getting a huge steal. With the uncertain future to Massie and Cooper the idea of picking Ogbuehi wasn’t that farfetched to me.

Jordan Phillips, defensive lineman, Oklahoma

- Actually, Phillps were selected one pick ahead of me so I didn’t get to consider him. It’s just that I think he has the best rip move of any draftprospect I have ever seen, and I think he has the potential to be a monster across from Calais Campbell in some years.

My selection:


Alex Carter, cornerback, Stanford

- I think he fits the scheme really well. He’s a big guy who likes to play physically, and likes to help out in the run game. He also has long arms to compete with just about any receiver in the league, and then he has an extremely high football-IQ. He rarely misses tackles, he’s rarely out of position, and he usually takes really good angles in any aspect of the game. I might even state that I think Alex Carter is nearly the same type as Patrick Peterson.

Yes, the Cardinals has a lot of defensive backs, and maybe it’s sort of overkill to add another one with such a high pick. On the other hand, I don’t like Jerraud Powers on the outside, and until he proves otherwise I don’t really believe in Arians’ praise of Justin Bethel. Besides, the defense is in different nickel packages well above half the time they are on the field, and in those packages they use a wealth of defensive backs. Carter would get his playing time early, and if he can’t win a starting spot on the outside, I really like the idea of him covering Vernon Davis and Jimmy Graham.

Third round:


I got an offer from the Chicago Bears who wanted to trade up. They offered me their third- and sixth round pick. I wanted more but their ‘general manager’ is a friend of mine so I wouldn’t try to flee him. In the end, we couldn’t reach an agreement, and thus the trade never materialized.

Instead, I considered these players at my initial spot:

Lorenzo Mauldin, outside linebacker, Louisville

- I don’t think Mauldin is as good a prospect as his counterpart for several seasons at Louisville, Marcus Smith, who the Eagles picked in the first round last year. In fact, since Chip Kelly seems willing to deal away just about anyone on that roster I hope Keim will offer something like a fifth- or sixth round-pick to acquire Smith. However, I do think Mauldin would be a decent scheme fit, and that he could at least be a capable situational edge rusher. For three seasons he played defensive end at Louisville but last season he was moved to outside linebacker, and that experience at the position could prove crucial to his rookie-production. I didn’t pick Mauldin because I simply thought the value was better with the guy I did pick.

Daryl Williams, offensive tackle, Oklahoma

- The thoughts for this pick would have been the exact same as my thoughts for considering Cedric Ogbuehi, although Williams might be able to contribute as a rookie. Actually, that was in part the reason why I didn’t select Williams as I don’t think he has the same upside as Ogbuehi, and I don’t think it would be worth it to spend a high pick on qualified competition to Massie and Cooper yet. I’m willing to give them at least next season to prove their worth.

John Miller, offensive guard, Lousiville

- I would like to add an interior offensive lineman at some point, preferably someone who can play both center and guard. I think John Miller is a very good guard but I also think he is strictly that – a guard. Also, I thought it was a bit early to take a player at this spot who I in all honesty wouldn’t hope could get any playing time as a rookie due to Cooper.

My selection:


David Johnson, running back, Northern Iowa

- I think Johnson is the best fit at running back in the draft class not named Todd Gurley. Johnson is a big and physical running back as well as a great receiver out of the backfield. To me, he is sort of a combination of Andre Ellington and Stepfan Taylor, and thus a very good addition to Arians’ offense. Also, this pick wouldn’t change in my mind if they added Adrian Peterson. If that happened I think Peterson and Taylor would battle it out but Johnson would still be a good compliment to the winner and Andre Ellington.

By the way, it’s been a while since Kurt Warner retired. It’s time to get another player out of Northern Iowa on the roster.

Fourth round:


I didn’t even try to trade down even though I really wanted to get extra picks to give myself flexibility in the late rounds. I think there is a lot of value in those rounds. I did however think about trading up, simply because I badly wanted an edge rusher. I had wanted to add an edge rusher since the first round but haven’t been able to find the right value with any of my picks. When my pick was about to come up there was only one guy I wanted. More on that later.

Even though I was more or less locked in on an edge rusher I also did consider Ty Montgomery, wide receiver, Stanford. I think Montgomery is the best return man in this draft. In four years at Stanford he has returned five kicks or punts for touchdown, and last season he led the entire FBS in kick-return average. On top of that, I think he would be a great fit in Arians’ offense as he would be able to take the top off defenses, and threaten with the deep passes, even though I don’t think he’s that good of a wide receiver. He is, however, extremely dangerous with the ball in his hands, and he has showed multiple times at Stanford that on shorter routes, trick plays, and even as a running back he is a nightmare to defenses. I think he is sort of like a reversed Andre Ellington as Ellington is a running back who is very skilled as a receiver while Montgomery is a receiver who is very skilled as a running back.

My selection:


Deion Barnes, outside linebacker, Penn State

- I think this was a bit of a reach. I had other offensive weapons than Montgomery in mind in later rounds, and thus I decided to pounce on Barnes. He stormed onto the scene in his first season at Penn State with a lot of sacks and tackles for loss, and was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Then he struggled mightily two seasons ago before he found sort of a combination of those two extremes last season. I don’t think he is very skilled at the technical part, and he doesn’t seem to have many pass rush-moves. He is, however, very fast with an explosive first step, and has the ability to dip his shoulder and turn the corner. He is also easily agile enough to make me believe he can drop back into coverage.

I think it was a great idea to try and switch positions with Matt Shaughnessy and Kareem Martin but it is a project at best with Martin. John Abraham is obviously a huge question mark, I have very little faith that Lamarr Woodley will suddenly turn his career around, and I simply don’t think Lorenzo Alexander or Marcus Benard are that good. I would have like to re-sign Sam Acho but it wouldn’t have kept me from drafting an edge rusher.

Fifth round:


This one was rather easy. If Ty Montgomery had been available, I would have selected him without thinking about picking anyone else. Since he was not, I decided on my pick without thinking about selecting anyone else. Had my guy been picked ahead of me, I would have selected Max Garcia, center, Florida or Austin Shepherd, offensive guard, Alabama without thinking about selecting anyone else.

My selection:


Marcus Murphy, running back, Missouri

- I think Murphy would be a good consolation prize to Montgomery. The only reason I selected him at this spot actually was that I didn’t get Montgomery, and I think his value is more as a sixth round-pick. I wasn’t willing to gamble, though. Murphy has been one of the best return men in college football for years as well. During his four years at Missouri he has returned seven kicks or punts for touchdowns, and last season he led the entire SEC in kick return average yards.

He is extremely dangerous with the ball in his hands. He’s very fast, sudden, explosive, and can change direction on a dime. He’s got very good vision, and he reads his blockers well. He can probably forget about ever being an effective running back in the NFL but this pick was all about getting a return man, so even though Arians might give him a few snaps on offense, and would probably try to get him in open space on occasions, that didn’t factor in to this selection.

Sixth round:


Since I was unable to trade up in the first round to target an edge rusher I change my strategy. Instead, I wanted to draft multiple edge rushers simply to optimize my chances of striking gold. For a long time I had circled Kyle Emanuel, defensive end, North Dakota State as a guy I wanted. I just had to figure out when I would select him. I thought this pick would be reaching - I thought my last pick would be too late. However, I also doubted he would last until my first pick in the 7th round, and I really wanted him. Now, he was selected ahead of the pick so in the end it didn’t matter but I still wanted to do a little write-up on him if some of you guys haven’t heard of him. I definitely thinks he has the skillset to play in the NFL. For four seasons straight he has been among the best defenders on the four time national FCS-champions. This past season he went crazy with 19.5 sacks, 32.5 tackles for loss and three forced fumbles in 13 games. For me to select a small school prospect he has to have dominated at his level. Kyle Emanuel has, and his playing style makes me think he could have a future in the NFL.

I also thought about Blake Bell, tight end, Oklahoma. ‘The Belldozer’. I absolutely love his attitude and approach when the Oklahoma coaches before last season told Blake Bell (starting quarterback at that time) that they wanted to go in another direction. He thought about it for a brief time, and then contacted the coaches to tell them that even though he was disappointed, he accepted their decision, and if they thought he could help the team win in any other way he would do it without hesitation. They thought he might be a good tight end, and so Blake Bell switched position, and started learning to play tight end. I actually think he became at least a decent one at that throughout the season, and he might be able to learn it even more. In the last few games I thought he showed just a little bit that could be compared to Heath Miller of the Steelers. You know - the tight end Bruce Arians talks about as his preferred type. I’ll admit there is a very long road ahead of Blake Bell if he should ever reach that level, and he probably won’t, but I like him, I like his potential, and I want him to get a fair shot.

My selection:


Max Garcia, center, Florida

- I wanted to add an interior lineman somewhere in this draft. Considering I was prepared to select Garcia with my last pick, I think I found very good value in this spot, and really, the decision wasn’t hard.
To me, Garcia is highly underrated, and I could see him being selected a lot higher than this in the real draft. He was the unquestionable leader of the Florida offense (not only the offensive line), and everyone and their mother in Florida loves him. He’s easily smart enough to play the position, and he is athletic enough that some teams might even consider him at other positions. In fact, he started his career playing left tackle at the University of Maryland (‘the athlete U’), and after transferring to Florida he switched between left tackle and left guard his first season before being moved to center last season. He usually takes the right angles, he plays with the desired leverage, and his hand-technique is better than most other interior linemen in this draft.

I don’t like the idea of A.Q. Shipley and Ted Larsen battle it out for the center-position in camp. I know very little about Shipley but it just doesn’t seem to me that he is world-class. I really think Garcia would have a decent chance to beat out both of them, and if not, well, then I would actually be comfortable with whoever won the position-battle. Also, they would save about 2.2 million on the salary cap if they were to cut Ted Larsen. I think that’s worth considering.

Seventh round:


If I could decide it myself I would have selected Kyle Emanuel with this pick, and then hoped for the guy I did select to slide to my last pick. I thought that could have been plausible. I think Emanuel is the better speed edge rusher, but I also think this guy is the better fit in Bettcher’s defense.

My selection:


Mike Reilly, rush linebacker, William and Mary

- 11 sacks, 12 tackles for loss, and an huge amount of pressure at the quarterback. Mike Reilly also played well in the games versus FBS-opponents (Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia Tech). He has the length the coaches like at the position, he plays with sort of a mean streak, he is very physical and plays with a huge desire and passion, and he is equally good versus the pass and the run. The coaches at William and Mary didn’t ask him to drop in to coverage that much (why would they? He was an absolute monster coming of the edge, affecting the opponent’s play and gameplan on nearly every snap) but at his pro day he performed well in the athletic drills that I think are the most important to linebackers, the three cone drill and the 20 yard shuttle. Actually, Reilly posted way better times than possible first round pick, Shane Ray, and he did better in both drills than other possible first round picks like Owamagbe Odighizuwa and Dante Fowler did at the Scouting Combine, and his times were comparable to possible first round picks Eli Harold and Preston Smith. I don’t pay much attention to performances at the Scouting Combine and Pro Days but those numbers are interesting, I think.

I think he has a chance to play in the NFL. If the Cardinals did draft him, I don’t know if he would play opposite Okafor or as a backup to Okafor but it’s not like they have a lot of proven commodities at the rush linebacker-spot anyway.

Seventh round:


Like I said, I wanted to draft multiple edge rusher since I didn’t get one of my top ranked players in the first round. Thus, I thought about selecting Tony Washington, rush linebacker, Oregon with this pick. I don’t think he’s an obvious fit in Betthers’ defense but he might develop in to one. In the end, that kept me from drafting him, though.

Jake Smith, center, Louisville
is a player I really like. He’s tough, he’s smart, he plays with good leverage, and he’s plain and simple just a solid player. He’s not a great athlete, though, and I think he could get in trouble with the faster defenders in the NFL when the structure at the offensive line brakes down, and he has to adjust with his athleticism. In the end, this selection came down to Smith or the guy I did pick, and the result was based on how I had a specific role in mind to the player I chose.

My selection:


Matthew Wells, inside linebacker, Mississippi State

- I think Wells is by far the most underrated player on that defense. Not that he’s as good as Preston Smith, Chris Jones, Benardrick McKinney or some of their other star players but Wells does it all, and his play definitely makes it easier to the other players. In fact, recently their head coach, Dan Mullen, called Wells their biggest loss going in to next season. They have used Wells to cover running backs, tight ends and even wide receivers in the passing games, and on top of that, he is a great blitzer.

However, I think he’s way too small to play linebacker in the NFL. He has some experience at safety from his first season at Mississippi State, and maybe that’s his future position in the NFL, but I have another role in mind as well. He’s an extremely good athlete with very good football-IQ, and a lot of speed to go along with it. I think he would be very well suited to spy on Russell Wilson and Colin Kaepernick, and I think his presence and role could free up a lot of the other defenders to do their things without thinking too much about those scrambling quarterbacks.

Now, Wells was also a great special teams-player at Mississippi State, and he might have a spot on the roster in that capacity.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

So that was it.

1st.
Round – Stephone Anthony, inside linebacker, Clemson

2nd.
Round – Alex Carter, cornerback, Stanford

3rd.
Round – David Johnson, running back, Northern Iowa

4th.
Round – Deion Barnes, outside linebacker, Penn State

5th.
Round – Marcus Murphy, running back, Missouri

6th.
Round – Max Garcia, center, Florida

7th.
Round – Mike Reilly, rush linebacker, William and Mary

7th.
Round – Matthew Wells, inside linebacker, Mississippi State

I stated in the beginning that I would be searching for starters with every pick, that I would be targeting players who fits the schemes, and that I would try to upgrade the linebacker corps, and the running game. I think I accomplished those goals. Be it on offense, defense or special teams, I think all eight players has the potential to become starters. I think Stephone Anthony would be a great addition to the linebacker corps. Max Garcia, David Johnson, and to some degree Marcus Murphy, could give the running game a boost, and then I added some players to other positions simply because I felt they were the best value pick at those spots. To me, Max Garcia was to best value pick overall.

This draft didn’t go entirely as I wanted but I do think it went fairly well, and that these selections would strengthen the Cardinals a lot.

I hope you enjoyed the read. Have a great draft-weekend, everyone!
 

Garthshort

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Gandhi, great job. I have no idea how good the players (your selections) are, but you seem to have covered most of the positions of need. Maybe, picking for need (always a bad idea) I would have gone for a NT before taking a second RB.

As for your last pick, Mr. Irrelevance(t?), we always come out of most drafts with an UDFA, that we really want. So this year we can get him with the draft's final pick.
 

DVontel

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Nice job, Ghandi. Very well thought out & executed greatly.
I will say I don't agree with some of your points about Stephone. I also think we could get him in the 2nd.
 

WildBB

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You pick Anthony and he brings some very good tangibles, but you dismiss Kendricks simply because of his height!?

To me he is everything Anthony is and more.

Anyway I share your concerns with the LB corps and the running game. Needs: High Priorities.

http://www.azcardinals.com/news-and...ebackers/6f5338b0-1e52-4ca0-9e9d-81a013e15e08

I like the Stanford CB pick Carter. Not particularly fond of Johnson's upright running style and that he doesn't run with much power. His completion was mediocre.

Also very good finds in Emanuel, Reilly and Wells.
 
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Cardiac

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Great read Gandhi, I truly enjoy how you lay out your strategy for drafting and then the thought processes behind each pick.

My mantra has been feed the trenches but I agree with you that the LB corps needs an infusion of talent. We do need to draft a RB as well.

Hopefully SK can maneuver enough in the draft to get good value on a rush LBer in the 1st rd.
 

Catfish

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Really nice job Gandhi-----I truly appreciate your logic and the amount of work that you put in just to post this summation. Even more so, I like your efforts to to eliminate those players who you feel should not be taken by the Cardinals, and how you justified these conclusions and your reasons for doing so. The end result is a very nice compilation of players who, (if selected by the Cardinals), appear to be well suited to their selections positions and who round out a group that fits very well with what our free agency efforts failed to acquire. Very nice job buddy.
 

LittleDavis

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"Also, this pick wouldn’t change in my mind if they added Adrian Peterson. If that happened I think Peterson and Taylor would battle it out but Johnson would still be a good compliment to the winner and Andre Ellington."

Might be the most absurd football related statement I have ever read. Really?!?!
 

Mitch

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I too appreciate the effort and all the thought processes. Here are my thoughts about your picks:

1. Stephone Anthony, LB, Clemson.

I really like Anthony and I concur with the majority of your assessments with regard of his talents. But I don't think there is any chance at all that the Cardinals would take him in the first round. At #55 he would be high on the Cardinals' board. BA said he wants to add a thumper and Anthony fits that bill.

2nd. Round – Alex Carter, cornerback, Stanford

Again, strong selection for the reasons you gave. But like you said, CB may not be high on the Cardinals' priority list. However, BA did say he want a big corner who can run and Carter is certainly that.

3rd. Round – David Johnson, running back, Northern Iowa

The more I watched of David Johnson the more concerned I became---because he runs like he's trying to tiptoe over hot coals. He rarely lowers his shoulder to take on hits---but he was exceptionally slippery and elusive at the college level. The translation of his current game to the NFL however may be a challenge.

4th. Round – Deion Barnes, outside linebacker, Penn State

Intriguing choice---kind of tweener DE/OLB---who has some good athletic ability---hey, you never know. Had a good year in 2014.

5th. Round – Marcus Murphy, running back, Missouri

Flip this pick with C Garcia because Garcia will be way off the board before Murphy. Murphy with his speed and quick feet has a chance on STs if he can hold up physically.

6th. Round – Max Garcia, center, Florida

Excellent pick if the Cards can get him on Day 3.

7th. Round – Mike Reilly, rush linebacker, William and Mary

Good value here!

7th. Round – Matthew Wells, inside linebacker, Mississippi State

I am going to have to go watch Wells. You have me fascinated here!

Gandhi---I love what you said about Todd Gurley.
 
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