NFL mock draft 2013: Arizona Cardinals choose Tavon Austin!?

Mike Ehrmann

A surprising choice for sure, but the abilities of Austin are undeniable and could end up being a boon to the Cardinals next year.

Mock drafts are often incorrect.

On Tuesday, Greg Cosell posted a mock draft of the first round.

Now think about new head coach Bruce Arians. Last year in Indianapolis, he had rookie T.Y. Hilton, at 5-foot-9 and 183 pounds. Hilton played 61 percent of the Colts' snaps, had 861 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns...he averaged almost 12 yards per punt return, with another touchdown. Prior to that with the Steelers, Arians featured 5-foot-10, 186-pound Antonio Brown. In 2011, Arians last year in Pittsburgh, Brown had 69 catches for 1108 yards. Austin is more versatile, and more explosive than both Brown and Hilton.

Surprisingly, I don't hate this draft pick. I know it's not a position of need. We have Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd and Andre Roberts.

But just as when the Cardinals picked Patrick Peterson in the 2011 draft, the Cardinals didn't necessarily need a CB. The season before they had two young CBs in Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Greg Toler, both of whom were coming off strong seasons and the Cardinals needed players at other positions of need.

Now the team needed a QB, but does anyone really believe picking Jake Locker or Blaine Gabbert in hindsight. In fact, the only successful quarterbacks from that draft were Andy Dalton and Colin Kaepernick.

Does this mean the situation is the same? By no means. But if the Cardinals address the OL later with other picks, or perhaps not at all. Maybe the OL needs no draft pick with Levi Brown back, Nate Potter at Guard, and Bobby Massie improving.

Having a playmaker, like Tavon Austin, is never a bad thing. The Cardinals tried to bring in Joshua Cribbs this offseason, showing they wanted a strong returner, a position Austin can fill immediately. Really what the situation boils down to is accepting and trusting the coaching staff and FO will make a good choice with the draft pick.

Tavon Austin for number seven overall. That's a good choice.

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