I think we all know what a surprise it has been that after three rounds of the 2011 NFL Draft the Arizona Cardinals have not drafted anyone to address perhaps their two most glaring needs -- quarterback and pass rushing. The passing on a QB is not a surprise. Many of us felt that Ken Whisenhunt was not going to take a QB in the draft. Plus, he believes that John Skelton will develop into a very good signal caller. However, the fact that they passed on a pass rusher in both the second and third rounds is shocking to most.
But maybe it should not be so shocking.
The Cards are pretty set on the defensive line, at least when dealing with the starters. It is the outside linebacker position that we all thought would be a target for the draft. It likely was and is a target, but perhaps it was not the highest priority because of the personnel they already have.
The media talks a lot about the age at the position the Cardinals have, featuring Joey Porter and Clark Haggans. It is important to note that they also have young, promising players. Both Will Davis and O'Brien Schofield were drafted by Ken Whisenhunt and have shown promise.
My guess is that when the team passed over both Akeem Ayers and Brooks Reed for running back Ryan Williams, they felt that neither of those players were a significant upgrade now or potentially in the future than Davis or Schofield.
Yes, the pass rush from the outside needs improvement, but perhaps that was naturally going to happen. Davis and Schofield were going to take over in 2011 and let Haggans and Porter play part-time.
I can't say for sure, but maybe that was the plan the whole time. They would have taken an OLB if that were the best player on their board.
Let's see what happens in the last few rounds. Maybe there will be more surprises for us.