The Arizona Cardinals: Mitch's 2013 Draft Preview

Mitch

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"A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty." Winston Churchill

Bruce Arians sees the opportunity in every difficulty. He has told his football team and the fans that he wants to win now.

"We have to win at home and win a few on the road" is BA's prescription.

When you listen to the various interviews MJ & Bickley have been conducting with players such as Carson Palmer, Drew Stanton, Rashard Mendenhall, Ryan Williams, Darnell Dockett, Calais Campbell, Jasper Brinkley, Lorenzo Alexander, Antoine Cason, Jerraud Powers and Rashad Johnson---you can hear the genuine excitement in their voices. These players are fired up.

BA and Steve Keim appear to be joined at the hip---they share a common vision and they have agreed on a formula.

So what can we expect from the upcoming draft?

My first instinct is to say: expect the unexpected.

The draft pundits and many of the fans here at ASFN expect the Cardinals to address the offensive line early and often in this draft.

However, when you listen to what BA and SK are saying about the offensive line---it does not appear to be one of their primary focuses in this draft.

BA has been touting LT Levi Brown as an "elite tackle" and while that truly appears to be an optimistic assessment of Brown's ability, it is not out of the realm of possibility when one considers that Brown is entering his prime, his body is fresh after a year on the sidelines, and the tapes of his last eight games suggest that he can perform at a very high level.

Just yesterday, Steve Keim predicted that RT Bobby Massie is going to have a "break-out year." Again, the last 8 game tapes of Massie suggest that Keim may be right on the money with his assessment.

Both BA and SK have been lauding Nate Potter for the improvement he showed down the stretch last year---and it really wasn't until he was inserted at LT that the offensive line started showing much needed improvement.

All of this would suggest that the Cardinals will not be drafting a tackle early on and quite possibly won't be drafting a tackle at all in this draft.

For insurance purposes, it would not be surprising if, following the draft, BA and SK sign T Max Starks to a one year deal.

Brown, Massie and Potter are locked up for the next several years.

At guard, with the recent signing of Chilo Rachal, there is considerable depth: Darryn Colledge, Adam Snyder, Senio Kelemete, Chilo Rachal, Mike Gibson and Jeremiah Warren.

While many scoff at Rachal's prospects, the Bears were 7-1 last year with Rachal starting at LG and proceeded to lose 4 of the next five games after he left the team for personal reasons. Not to say it was all because they lost Rachal, but it's an interesting juxtaposition nonetheless. Rachal is a mauler in the running game and if Harold Carmichael can iron out the kinks in Rachal's pass protection, Rachal could be a steal.

I realize there are a lot of could be's here----but, again, as confident as BA is in Harold Carmichael and Larry Zierlein, he sees opportunity in every difficulty here.

Therefore, I do not see the Cardinals taking a guard at #7.

What I do see is them taking a versatile prospect who can play center or guard. If Travis Frederick, 6-4, 335 of Wisconsin is still available at #69, I think he will garner a great deal of consideration. Ditto for Barrett Jones, 6-4, 300 of Alabama.

But what I think BA and SK would prefer to do is wait until the #104 pick in the hope that Brian Schwenke, 6-3, 307 of California or David Quessenberry, 6-5, 294 of San Jose St. is available.

Those are the two offensive linemen the Cardinals are targeting, imo.

BA has said he wants a "difference maker" at #7.

First of all, I think there's a 50/50 chance that if the Cardinals got a good offer to move down and add extra picks, they will. It all depends on what players are still available at #7. if a player they absolutely love is there---they will stay put. Otherwise, I would expect them to move down, assuming they have a good opportunity to.

Regardless, I believe that the first round pick will be a pass rusher or an offensive skill player....someone from this list:

OLB Jarvis Jones, Georgia
OLB Dion Jordan, Oregon
OLB Ziggy Ansah, BYU
OLB Bjoern Werner, Florida St.
DT/DE Sheldon Richardson
DE Datone Jones, UCLA
DE Margus Hunt, SMU
WR Tavon Austin, West Virginia
WR Cordarelle Patterson, Tennessee
WR DeAndre Hopkins, Clemson
TE Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame

This list of "difference makers" makes it all the more feasible for the Cardinals to trade down in this draft, should they elect to.

What about QB?

Much will depend on what BA and SK intend to do with Brian Hoyer.

See---unless a team is willing to trade a 5th rounder for Hoyer, which at this point seems doubtful---I think they would be wise to keep Hoyer, for two reasons: (1) they may wind up liking him more than they even imagine right now; (2) his trade value should be at its highest near the trading deadline, when teams with injured QBs need to pick up another QB.

If the plan is to keep Hoyer---there is no sense drafting a QB this year because you cannot afford to keep 4 QBs on the roster. Plus, next year's draft is much stronger at the QB position.

What about CB?

The depth that BA and SK added this off-season in Cason, Powers and Magee, to go with Peterson, Fleming and Bethel indicates that drafting a CB this year is not a pressing need.

What about S?

Well, the Cardinals have said all along that they want to draft a safety, and without question, they will. The only thing that is a little surprising to me is why they feel Justin Bethel is better suited to play CB. Bethel has added impressive muscle to his frame this off-season---he played well at SS in college and seems naturally instinctive at safety.

The question is where the Cardinals will draft a safety.

The good news is that this is the best and deepest draft for safeties in eons.

They conducted a private workout with Jonathan Cyprien, 6-0, 209, of FIU and if he is still on the board at #38, they will have to decide whether to take him or a TE like Zach Ertz or Gavin Escobar at that spot.

I think they go TE at #38 because they get an instant starter there at a key position in BA's offense.

But this is why adding extra picks is attractive in this draft.

The Cardinals have also had Tyrann Mathieu in for a private workout---and while he wouldn't be a starting FS---he would be a valuable nickel CB and FS.

My best guess is that the Cardinals may wait until the 5th round, pick #140, to take a safety---and there will still be plenty of good ones on the board at that spot:

Duke Williams, Nevada
Daimon Stafford, Nebraska
Bacarri Rambo, Georgia
Zeke Motta, Notre Dame
Phillip Thomas, Freson St.
T.J. McDonald, USC
Tony Jefferson, Oklahoma
Robert Lester, Alabama
J.J. Wilcox, Georgia Southern
John Boyett, Oregon
Shmarko Thomas, Syracuse
Shaun Williams, Georgia
Ray Ray Armstrong, Miami
Earl Wolff, NC State

What this list suggests and yes, Rambo, Thomas and McDonald may very will be off the board by #140---but maybe not---is that the Cardinals would still be able to draft a very good safety in the 6th round at #174, of they wanted to wait until then.

What about an ILB?

Now---this suddenly is a position the Cardinals have to address, because they really had little depth behind Daryl Washington at WILB to begin with---and what the Cardinals need is a 3 down player who can be the nickel LB. Colin Parker has a shot...but we need to draft another player.

To me that player is Kiko Alonzo, 6-3, 242, Oregon. The Cardinals have had him in for a private workout, and starting with pick #69 he will be given very strong consideration.

In terms of a later round pick, the Cardinals have had Brandon Magee, 6-0, 236 of Arizona St. in for a private workout. He's a real sleeper and could help the Cardinals in a variety of ways, but doesn't seem to be suited to play WILB.

Other WILBs I was impressed with in regular season and post-season play:

Arthur Brown, Kansas St.
A.J. Klein, Iowa St.
Zaviar Gooden, Missouri
Jelani Jenkins, Florida
Sio Moore, Connecticut
Jake Knott, Iowa St.
Khaseem Greene, Rutgers
Jonathan Bostic, Florida
Vince Williams, Florida St.
Nick Clancy, Boston College

Having watched all of Clancy's games at BC, I was amazed at how well he stepped into Luke Keuchly's role at BC this past year. Clancy has good size too at 6-2, 240.

What about RB?

One of the major reason why I want the Cardinals to move down is to get an extra pick to take RB Montee Ball, 5-11, 210, of Wisconsin. BA likes his RBs to be able to hammer the ball inside and have enough speed to burst through openings---I just love how instinctive and tough Ball is...and I think he fits BA's proto-type RB very well.

At this point with all the other needs, unless the Cardinals do pick up extra picks, it may be hard to pick a RB until rounds 6 or 7. Two later-round RB prospects the Cardinals have met with are Latavius Murray of Central Florida and Derrick Washington of Tuskegee.

The Cardinals are also apparently very high on Christine Michael of Texas A&M...which in light of his character issues, despite his natural talents, is a tad surprising. Steve Keim typically is big on high-character players.

But to me that's OK because I happen to like the #3 RB William Powell a lot----and I think he is going to enamor himself to BA and his staff.

However, if we could find a way to add Montee Ball, I would be ecstatic.

To me, if he's there at #69 I'd take him.

What about WR?

WR is a definite need, believe it or not. First of all, Andre Roberts is one year from free agency. Secondly, the only depth WRs behind Fitz, Floyd and Roberts are LaRon Byrd and Kerry Taylor.

Steve Keim has been watching tapes of WR Tavon Austin and said so on Doug and Wolf.

I think Austin will be a top 6 pick.

The Cardinals have had Markus Wheaton, 5-11, 183, of Oregon St, in for a private workout and would have top hope he's still on the board at #69. Wheaton has been getting strong attention from a number of clubs including the Pats.

The Cardinals met with late round prospect Dan Buckner of Arizona at the East-West Shrine game.

The needs for a speedy slot WR is strong. Perhaps one of the following could be an option:

Ace Sanders, South Carolina
Quinton Patton, Louisiana Tech
Robert Woods, USC
Stedman Bailey, West Virginia
Ryan Swope, Texas A&M
Kenny Stills, Oklahoma
Josh Boyce, TCU
Denard Robinson, Michigan
T.J. Moe, Missouri (good call Mad Card!)
Darius Johnson, SMU
Marquise Goodwin, Texas

Two outside burners:

Corey Fuller, Virginai Tech
Tavarres King, Georgia

Touch possession types:

Chris Harper, Kansas St.
Aaron Dobson, Marshall
Da'Rick Rogers, Tennessee Tech
Aaron Mellette, Elon
Cobi Hamilton, Arkansas
Tyrone Goard, Eastern Kentucky
Jasper Collins, Mt. Union
Conner Vernon, Duke
Alec Lemon, Syracuse
Mark Harrison, Rutgers

What about TE?

First of all, i don't think BA will want to use Anthony Sherman as an h-back, so it is quite possible and perhaps even likely that the Cardinals will trade Sherman. Sherman has value as a good FB and very good ST player. I could see the Chargers offering a 5th (#145) or a 6th (#179) for Sherman. Other teams like the Bears might be interested as well.

The biggest and most intriguing question I have is just how high BA and SK has Tyler Eifert of Notre Dame rated. If the Cardinals do trade down from #7, Eifert could be a reason why.

As stated previously, Zach Ertz (Stanford) and Gavin Escobar (San Diego St.) and possibly even Travis Kelce (Cincinnati) could be very much in play at #38.

But the sleeper in this draft for the Cardinals is Nick Kasa (6-6, 271, Colorado) who is a converted DE who has outstanding speed for his size, but is just learning the craft. His senior stats: 25/391/15.5/3 tds. The Cardinals had Kasa in for a private workout, so he is very much in consideration on Day 3 of the draft.

Prediction?

When all is said and done I think the Cardinals will have 8-9 picks and it will go something like this:

1. Dion Jordan, OLB, Oregon or Jarvis Jones, Georgia
2. Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford or Gavin Escobar, San Diego St.
3. Markus Wheaton, WR, Oregon St. or Robert Woods, USC
4. Brian Schwenke, C, California or David Quessenberry, San Jose St.
5. Kiko Alonzo, WILB, Oregon or Zaviar Gooden, Missouri
6. Nick Kasa, TE, Colorado or Michael Williams, Alabama
7. J.J. Wilcox, SS, Georgia Southern or Schmarko Thomas, Syracuse or Earl Wolff, NC State
8. Robert Lester, FS, Alabama
9. Latavius Murray, RB, Central Florida

Possible UCFA's:

Dan Bucker, WR, Arizona
Brandon Magee, LB, Arizona St.
Derrick Washington, RB, Tuskegee
Colby Cameron, QB, Louisiana Tech
Matt Brown, QB, Illinois St.
Lanear Sampson, WR, Baylor
Luke Wilson, TE, Rice
Vince Painter, T, Virgina Tech
Garrett Gilkey, T/G, Chadron St.
James Ferentz, C, Iowa
Travis Chappalear, OLB/DE, NW Missouri St.
Anthony McCloud, DT, Florida St.
Jonathan Stewart, ILB, Texas A&M
Devonte Holloman, OLB, South Carolina
Demetrius McCray, CB, Appalachian St.
Bradley McDougald, FS, Kansas

This is Steve Keim's first draft as GM and I think we will be very impressed with what he does. BA will have his stamp on this draft as well, but Keim is pulling the strings and, imo, he and these new feisty Cardinals will shine in Keim Time. GO CARDINALS!
 
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Jetstream Green

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Great read Mitch. Goodwin is more of a outside burner than a slot guy, but though limited at the burner position...he would torch a lot of defenses going deep and that is something BA said he wants to try and do about six shots a game. Think he should be there in the fourth
 

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Mitch

You are right on on some of your comments. The Cards did have Alonso in for a visit and either took him to breakfest or lunch and I believe are targeting him. I also agree on Kasa he had a great workout and I think the Cards have serious interest in him.

One thing that sticks out in my mind is that Keim said that there are good lineman in rounds 3 to 6 that may be able to start in the league. I really hope they are targeting Quisenberry who can play multiple positions. I also think you are right on with Scwenke.

The wideout I really like is Swope. I watched this guy alot of times last year and he is a surehanded receiver who very seldom drops a ball. He also has very good speed. If the draft goes the way you have it I will be very satisfied.
 
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Mitch

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Great read Mitch. Goodwin is more of a outside burner than a slot guy, but though limited at the burner position...he would torch a lot of defenses going deep and that is something BA said he wants to try and do about six shots a game. Think he should be there in the fourth

Good point, Roy Green---BA could use Goodwin the way he used Mike Wallace, although Wallace has a little bigger size.
 

corrado

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Mitch

You are right on on some of your comments. The Cards did have Alonso in for a visit and either took him to breakfest or lunch and I believe are targeting him. I also agree on Kasa he had a great workout and I think the Cards have serious interest in him

One thin that sticks out in my mind is that Keim thear are good loineman in rounds 3 to 6 that may be able to stgart in the league. I really hope they are targeting Quisenberry who can play multiple positions. I also think you are right on with Scwenke.

The wideout I really like is Swope. I watched this guy alot of times last year and he is a surehanded receiver who very seldom drops a ball. He also has very good speed. If the draft goes the way you have it I will be very satisfied.
 

Finito

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I don't think there is anyway in hell they draft a WR or tight end before an offensive lineman this year. I understand fans want the sexy picks like skill positions the foundation of an NFL team is in the trenches. There is just to many good ones this year to pass up in my opinion people are already putting Warmack in the hall of fame, if they want to trade back a few and target Cooper hell I'm all for that to.

Jurecki had stated a few times the first 3 picks will be OL, OLB and safety. Not in that order but the team wants to address those positions and this draft just happens to be really deep at all 3 of those spots
 
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Mitch

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You are right on on some of your comments. The Cards did have Alonso in for a visit and either took him to breakfest or lunch and I believe are targeting him. I also agree on Kasa he had a great workout and I think the Cards have serious interest in him.

One thing that sticks out in my mind is that Keim said that there are good lineman in rounds 3 to 6 that may be able to start in the league. I really hope they are targeting Quisenberry who can play multiple positions. I also think you are right on with Scwenke.

The wideout I really like is Swope. I watched this guy alot of times last year and he is a surehanded receiver who very seldom drops a ball. He also has very good speed. If the draft goes the way you have it I will be very satisfied.

I love Swope too, corrado. Tough kid with sneaky speed. Most Wes Welker---like WR in the draft.
 
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Mitch

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I don't think there is anyway in hell they draft a WR or tight end before an offensive lineman this year. I understand fans want the sexy picks like skill positions the foundation of an NFL team is in the trenches. There is just to many good ones this year to pass up in my opinion people are already putting Warmack in the hall of fame, if they want to trade back a few and target Cooper hell I'm all for that to.

Jurecki had stated a few times the first 3 picks will be OL, OLB and safety. Not in that order but the team wants to address those positions and this draft just happens to be really deep at all 3 of those spots

If you are right and the Cardinals are willing to pass on the top TEs in round 2---then pencil in the o-lineman of your choice at #38 or #69.

If the Cardinals are truly interested in WR Markus Wheaton and they have been showing a great deal of interest in him---he's not getting past #69, and may actually be off the board by then.

As for the TEs, BA considers his TEs as part of the o-line in the running game, in pass protection and in his passing game.

I would be very surprised if BA and SK do not pick a TE in the first three rounds.

I'm not sure if MJ will be correct on his prediction.
 
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Just yesterday, Steve Keim predicted that RT Bobby Massie is going to have a "break-out year." Again, the last 8 game tapes of Massie suggest that Keim may be right on the money with his assessment.

Both BA and SK have been lauding Nate Potter for the improvement he showed down the stretch last year---and it really wasn't until he was inserted at LT that the offensive line started showing much needed improvement.

All of this would suggest that the Cardinals will not be drafting a tackle early on and quite possibly won't be drafting a tackle at all in this draft.

That's an awful big maybe to be gambling on. I hope he can have a solid first 8 games, because if he doesn't it will put us right behind that 8 ball .

I agree on a trade down and hedge our bets. I'd love to get Cooper for a later pick and an extra 2nd round pick.

Miami would obviously be our best choice, but unfortunately I see them trading up with Cleveland just ahead of us. I don't think SD trades up but hopefully I'm wrong there. After that, Tampa won't trade up unless the Revis deal falls apart, Panters won't have to, Saints don't have a 2nd so won't and St. Lou won't. That takes us back to #17. If they really like Eifert he'd be a target there, cause I believe Warmack and maybe Cooper will be gone then.

Also your totally bypassing Mingo, if Jordan is gone. I see that Jarvis Jordan has the best ability right now and that is what you want out of a pick that high. But to elevate Anzah and totally disregard Mingo isn't right, imo. Just in the fact of the conferences they played in, if nothing else. They both have real high cielings, but Anzah is as raw as they come.
 

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The good news is that this is the best and deepest draft for safeties in eons.

They conducted a private workout with Jonathan Cyprien, 6-0, 209, of FIU and if he is still on the board at #38, they will have to decide whether to take him or a TE like Zach Ertz or Gavin Escobar at that spot.

I think they go TE at #38 because they get an instant starter there at a key position in BA's offense.

You know that TE is just as deep as saftey.

If Cyprien or Elam is there, I'd be inclined to pick one of them there. They are still potential real difference makers in a year. Ertz will be good, but so will a bunch of other TE's in this draft.

That is IF we didn't take an OLB in the 1st. Then I'd be inclined to take either, OLB, or S there. Okafor or Cyprien - Elam.
 

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Just say no to Dion Jordon. Local guys up here feel he will be the biggest bust in the draft and these guys are Ducks homers. They feels he is a system guy and once he is playing in the speed of the NFL, he will take ten steps back.
 

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I would love to trade back. We have a chance to fill some holes and be a good team. I want a good TE the most. In BAs offense the TE will help in both passing and running the ball. Very important.

I would love a guy like Warford in the 2nd or 3rd. One of the top centers would be iceing on the cake.

My top pick at 7 is Dion Jordan, if gone I try to trade back and load up on picks.
 

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I try to trade back and load up on picks.

If given the opportunity, they should grab this strategy. Rd's 2-5 are going to be loaded with talented players.

Early picks in Rd. 1 may be the weakest in a decade. Not much difference from picks 1-20 really, talent wise. After that your pretty much starting Rd. 2 already - picks 21-50. Then you have another 50-75 prospects who are pretty even. Good year to p/u multiple value picks. Esp. with our multiple needs, imo.
 

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Good point, Roy Green---BA could use Goodwin the way he used Mike Wallace, although Wallace has a little bigger size.

True Mitch. I'm a UTex so I watched all the games. I really do not see Goodwin with his build and route running as much of a slot WR in the pros. But, he is very very fast and he can do something which most speed demons cannot, he can track a ball and catch it over his shoulder. He would stretch the field for the Cards, and people would finally pay for double teaming Fitz with Floyd reaping the benefits and Goodwin shooting past some poor nickel corner or even better a safety.
 
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Mitch

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That's an awful big maybe to be gambling on. I hope he can have a solid first 8 games, because if he doesn't it will put us right behind that 8 ball .

I agree on a trade down and hedge our bets. I'd love to get Cooper for a later pick and an extra 2nd round pick.

Miami would obviously be our best choice, but unfortunately I see them trading up with Cleveland just ahead of us. I don't think SD trades up but hopefully I'm wrong there. After that, Tampa won't trade up unless the Revis deal falls apart, Panters won't have to, Saints don't have a 2nd so won't and St. Lou won't. That takes us back to #17. If they really like Eifert he'd be a target there, cause I believe Warmack and maybe Cooper will be gone then.

Also your totally bypassing Mingo, if Jordan is gone. I see that Jarvis Jordan has the best ability right now and that is what you want out of a pick that high. But to elevate Anzah and totally disregard Mingo isn't right, imo. Just in the fact of the conferences they played in, if nothing else. They both have real high cielings, but Anzah is as raw as they come.

I am not counting Mingo out, WBB. The Cardinals have shown more interest in Jordan, Ansah and Jones---private workouts with Jordan and Ansah and full-staff attendance at Jones' Pro Day.

Russ Lande of the NFP was on MJ & Bickley a few days ago and what he said about Mingo is exactly what I saw on tape---he gets a great first step off the snap, but for some reason stops his feet about half-way to the QB about 3 out of every 4 plays. As Lande said, "there's just something missing with this guy."

Now---Tom Pratt could change all of that, and there is no denying Mingo's physical talents. But, I would be surprised if they took him over the aforementioned three. Wouldn't you?
 

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Mitch, I agree and disagree:
1. Jordan would be my pick, but doubt he'll be available.
2. Don't like Jarvis at #7.
3. If Jordan is gone, I still think we'll go OL in the 1st or no later than the 3rd.
4. TE (Ertz) in the 2nd is my guess.
5, Don't see a WR as we have too many more pressing needs.
6. My position breakdown:
A. OL in the 1st or 3rd.
B. TE in the 2nd.
C. OLB in the 1st or 3rd.
D. S in the 4th or 5th.
E. RB in the 4th or 5th.
F. Wild Cards that fall through the cracks in the 6th and 7th.

Have to come out of the Draft feeling better about the OL. For Carson's sake, for Larry's sake and for the fan's sake. That's why I think we'll go OL at #7. Especially since I doubt that Jordan will be available. But like I keep saying, I'm always wrong.
 
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Mitch

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True Mitch. I'm a UTex so I watched all the games. I really do not see Goodwin with his build and route running as much of a slot WR in the pros. But, he is very very fast and he can do something which most speed demons cannot, he can track a ball and catch it over his shoulder. He would stretch the field for the Cards, and people would finally pay for double teaming Fitz with Floyd reaping the benefits and Goodwin shooting past some poor nickel corner or even better a safety.

Roy---while we are it---if you have the time, could you offer your opinions of:

FS Kenny Vaccaro

DE Alex Okafor

I have Vaccaro rated as an early 2nd rounder and Okafor as a 3rd rounder.

Vaccaro---love his versatility and hitter's mentality, just wish he made more plays on the ball for a guy who seems to have a nose for the ball.

Okafor---love his physical strength, but wish he was quicker and faster and more flexible.

I have wanted to mock Okafor in at #38 but see a number of players there that I rate higher.

Vaccaro would be a gift at #38---and stranger things have happened, but if he were to fall to #31 and the 49ers, that's probably as low as he would fall.

Any other Longhorns you like in this draft?
 
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Mitch

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Mitch, I agree and disagree:
1. Jordan would be my pick, but doubt he'll be available.
2. Don't like Jarvis at #7.
3. If Jordan is gone, I still think we'll go OL in the 1st or no later than the 3rd.
4. TE (Ertz) in the 2nd is my guess.
5, Don't see a WR as we have too many more pressing needs.
6. My position breakdown:
A. OL in the 1st or 3rd.
B. TE in the 2nd.
C. OLB in the 1st or 3rd.
D. S in the 4th or 5th.
E. RB in the 4th or 5th.
F. Wild Cards that fall through the cracks in the 6th and 7th.

Have to come out of the Draft feeling better about the OL. For Carson's sake, for Larry's sake and for the fan's sake. That's why I think we'll go OL at #7. Especially since I doubt that Jordan will be available. But like I keep saying, I'm always wrong.

You and MJ are of the same mindset.

The irony is that a speed WR might do more for Carson and Larry than any other position...allows Carson faster 3 step pass options and takes the double team off Larry, which as we have seen basically nullifies Larry.
 
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Mitch

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Mitch, I agree and disagree:
1. Jordan would be my pick, but doubt he'll be available.
2. Don't like Jarvis at #7.
3. If Jordan is gone, I still think we'll go OL in the 1st or no later than the 3rd.
4. TE (Ertz) in the 2nd is my guess.
5, Don't see a WR as we have too many more pressing needs.
6. My position breakdown:
A. OL in the 1st or 3rd.
B. TE in the 2nd.
C. OLB in the 1st or 3rd.
D. S in the 4th or 5th.
E. RB in the 4th or 5th.
F. Wild Cards that fall through the cracks in the 6th and 7th.

Have to come out of the Draft feeling better about the OL. For Carson's sake, for Larry's sake and for the fan's sake. That's why I think we'll go OL at #7. Especially since I doubt that Jordan will be available. But like I keep saying, I'm always wrong.

You and MJ are of the same mindset.

The irony is that a speed WR might do more for Carson and Larry than any other position...allows Carson faster 3 step pass options and takes the double team off Larry, which as we have seen basically nullifies Larry.

As for Jarvis Jones---when I heard that Tom Pratt's number one requisite for pass rushers is hand and arm strength---I knew why the Cardinals are so interested in Jones. His ability to rush at full speed off the edge and use his hands to disengage from the tackle and change direction toward the ball is exceptional.

What I really like about Jones is that after his huge season two years ago and with every team keying on him this year, he was just as productive, if not more. There are a lot of edge players who will tell you that when you get keyed on and chipped and double teamed it take a lot out of you.
 
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RugbyMuffin

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1. Dion Jordan, OLB, Oregon or Jarvis Jones, Georgia
2. Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford or Gavin Escobar, San Diego St.
3. Markus Wheaton, WR, Oregon St. or Robert Woods, USC
4. Brian Schwenke, C, California or David Quessenberry, San Jose St.
5. Kiko Alonzo, WILB, Oregon or Zaviar Gooden, Missouri
6. Nick Kasa, TE, Colorado or Michael Williams, Alabama
7. J.J. Wilcox, SS, Georgia Southern or Schmarko Thomas, Syracuse or Earl Wolff, NC State
8. Robert Lester, FS, Alabama
9. Latavius Murray, RB, Central Florida

Nice post, nice breakdown. I especially like that you buck the trend on where players are going. In my mind, there is no way Okafor is there in the 3rd round, but that is the point, in my mind which means doodly squat. Draft day humbles us all. Thus I like the Mitch grading system. Cool stuff.

Yeah, we better get used to the name Latavius Murray cause the Cardinals are going to pick him at some point, but he is not THAT big of a secret to make it past the top of the 6th round.

As for the draft ? Here is my proverbial rain on said parade.

Last February I posted that if the Cardinals did not do something with the offensive line they are doomed. They were, and we all watched it.

This team cannot afford to not invest in the offensive line. THEY CAN NOT DO IT.

Those picks above, great picks. Great skill positions picks. Will amount to 6 wins tops tho, because the offensive line will leak like a seve. Why ? And how do I know that ?

Watched this team for the last 2 years, that that offensive line is not going to be able to amount to anything more than 6 wins. Relying on Nate Potter, who has never played guard in the NFL, a rookie center, and either Colledge or Snyder at one of the guard positions ?

We would be doomed.

Dion Jordan in the 1st ? Sure.

A TE in the 2nd ? Not buying it, not buying it for two reasons. The 1st is there are good TE in the 3rd and 4th round that will better suit what the Cardinals need, and 2nd gotta invest in the offensive line. Anyone who needs more proof then what they have watched for two seasons, has been watching Arizona Cardinals football way too long and has been desensitize to the suckage that is their offense.

It is NOT a coincidence two of the best, if not the two best, offensive lines met in the Superbowl last year.

Let me put it another way. Why on earth would a franchise which has very very obvious and extremely huge holes in its offensive line not draft offensive line in a draft where offensive linemen are talented, deep and plentiful. It makes no sense.

Yes, it is not fun. Yes, it doesn't really excite the fan base. Yet, all the skill in the word does not amount to anything if your QB is hurt, or on his back all the time. It doesn't matter when your running back can't see light and is fighting for the tough yards to just get back to the line of scrimmage.

Save the skill for next year, invest in the foundation.

Oh and I hate JJ Wilcox. Stick with Earl Wolff.

BTW - I will be posting (hopefully) my final mock tomorrow, you are welcome to come by and trash it. lol :D
 
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ndhillst

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This is a really good analysis of our needs and the possibilities. I am concerned about Chilo Rachal - not just his skills but his personal issues. I think that even in your scenario that unless there is another FA out there the FO has their eyes on, you have to draft a G in the event Chilo flakes out on the team. Of course, I'm sure they talked to him and are convinced those are behind him or they wouldn't have signed him, but it still worries me.

Other than that, as I said, very thought provoking draft!
 

Garthshort

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Mitch, you make a good argument for Jarvis Jones. As for speed WR, Carson won't be able to reach him from a prone position. Still think it will be Johnson at #7, if he's available. If Johnson isn't, then it will be wild, imo, trying to guess the pick.
 

WildBB

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I am not counting Mingo out, WBB. The Cardinals have shown more interest in Jordan, Ansah and Jones---private workouts with Jordan and Ansah and full-staff attendance at Jones' Pro Day.

Russ Lande of the NFP was on MJ & Bickley a few days ago and what he said about Mingo is exactly what I saw on tape---he gets a great first step off the snap, but for some reason stops his feet about half-way to the QB about 3 out of every 4 plays. As Lande said, "there's just something missing with this guy."

Now---Tom Pratt could change all of that, and there is no denying Mingo's physical talents. But, I would be surprised if they took him over the aforementioned three. Wouldn't you?

No, I think he'll go ahead of where Jarvis Jones is taken and possibly Ansah.

Right now I see it Jarvis Jones, Dion Jordan, Barkevious Mingo and then Ezekiel Anzah, talent wise.

Where they get picked, I see Jordan going first, Mingo second, Anzah third and Jones fourth. I just think the combine and the stenosis scares enough top 10 teams off on Jones. There's no denying what he brings on game day though. I'd love to have Jarvis Jones here.

I hope we get to trade back. Unless Joekel or Fisher are available, I think our draft would go outstanding with a trade back.
 

Jetstream Green

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Roy---while we are it---if you have the time, could you offer your opinions of:

FS Kenny Vaccaro

DE Alex Okafor

I have Vaccaro rated as an early 2nd rounder and Okafor as a 3rd rounder.

Vaccaro---love his versatility and hitter's mentality, just wish he made more plays on the ball for a guy who seems to have a nose for the ball.

Okafor---love his physical strength, but wish he was quicker and faster and more flexible.

I have wanted to mock Okafor in at #38 but see a number of players there that I rate higher.

Vaccaro would be a gift at #38---and stranger things have happened, but if he were to fall to #31 and the 49ers, that's probably as low as he would fall.

Any other Longhorns you like in this draft?

Vaccaro to me is a physical safety, and plays the game old school style but I do not think his game would translate well to how the NFL now uses the safety in a more pass coverage role. His play is in the style of Adrian Wilson but he is not as athletic as Wilson. I think he is second round talent, where he will be drafted is beyond me and could go in the first for sure but I do not think he warrants that high of a pick...dude is not a playmaker as in interceptions, not a ballhawk.

Okafor to me is first round talent and will be a steal for someone in the second if he lasts that long. If one watched UT's entire season, one cannot deny his talent. I personally think he is an elite player who was on a subpar line which had a soft underbelly and could not stop a rush up the gut. It is hard to be a feared pass rusher when your worrying about the weakness around you in your fellow DL. If turned loose, he will be a star.

As I said, Goodwin is insane fast and can do something which most speedsters cannot, he can track a ball over his shoulder and catch it. That type of player is a luxury pick for most and I do not see him ever really excelling in a slot WR position. I will say this. There have been a lot of speed demons in drafts before which lacked his catching ability and have gone in the early rounds. I would not be shocked if he was drafted as soon as the second round...speed is valued in the NFL and he is blessed with it :)
 
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Mitch

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No, I think he'll go ahead of where Jarvis Jones is taken and possibly Ansah.

Right now I see it Jarvis Jones, Dion Jordan, Barkevious Mingo and then Ezekiel Anzah, talent wise.

Where they get picked, I see Jordan going first, Mingo second, Anzah third and Jones fourth. I just think the combine and the stenosis scares enough top 10 teams off on Jones. There's no denying what he brings on game day though. I'd love to have Jarvis Jones here.

I hope we get to trade back. Unless Joekel or Fisher are available, I think our draft would go outstanding with a trade back.

I guarantee you that Ansah will be taken ahead of Mingo. And I would be very surprised if Mingo goes ahead of Jarvis Jones. Not to deny Mingo's talent at all---but Ansah's physical talents are off the charts (he's as fast as Mingo and 30 pounds stronger). And Jones is just so much more productive and tenacious.

The other rusher in addition to Jordan, Ansah and Jones who is likely to go ahead of Mingo is Bjeorn Werner---much more productive, not as fast, but much stronger.
 
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