Potential targets (in no particular order) for the Cardinals in day two of the NFL draft.
- DT Louis Nix – Nix is a prototypical NT, while the Cardinals do not have a huge hole there with Dan Williams managing the position, the loss of the Ta’amu Alameda for the first part of the season the Cardinals may see him as a potential target.
- QB Derek Carr – No need to go into depth on this pick. Big arm, NFL pedigree and a fit for Arians offense. Only question is does he slide enough to allow the Cardinals to trade up to grab him.
- DT Timmy Jernigan – A possible 3-4 DE or 4-3 DT, he is a guy who can add versatility to the Cardinals line and bring a force who can stuff the run, rush the passer from the interior and make plays in the backfield. Questions with a failed drug test and taking plays off make him a second round pick.
- DE Demarcus Lawrence – This is a future 3-4 OLB who some pundit had the Cardinals taking in the 1st. Lawrence provides a potential pass rusher who is known for his good “bend,” his ability to get below tackles and apply pressure from the edge. He is definitely a player the Cardinals will be looking at.
- DE Kony Ealy – Another potential 3-4 OLB. He reminds me of the Cardinals second round bust, Buster Davis, but many are high on his ability to get to the passer. If the Cardinals do draft him then we will know we got a good player. His stiffness as an athlete is what drops him to the second round.
- OT Morgan Moses – I didn’t list the OG Xavier Su’a-Filo or Cyrus Kouandjio because I do not think either offers what the Cardinals need. Moses can play both RT and G, which gives him greater value as a player for the Cardinals as Bruce Arians does not like to suit up more than seven lineman on game days. His ability to swing brings more competition to the right side though I see it as an unlikelihood the Cardinals draft a lineman high this year.
- TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins – A TE that matches what Arians wants, he block, he can catch the ball and he brings physicality to the position. He has some red flag concerns with off the field issues but his upside may make him too hard to pass over if he is available to the Cardinals.
- TE Troy Niklas – Another big TE, but this guy specializes in blocking and is a prototypical Arians TE. He isn’t as athletic as ASJ but he also doesn’t come with the off-the-field issues.
- DE Kareem Martin – This is my sleeper pick, he reminds me of a young Calais Campbell. He is big at 6-6, 300 LBS and because of his size struggles when he loses the leverage battle to lineman but when he wins he can blow up tackles. I would love to get this guy as I see him as an immediate heir-apparent to Darnell Dockett.
- DT Stephon Tuitt – Another potential Dockett replacement. Tuitt has been graded as a first round talent who as slid down the mock draft boards. He is another tall, big DE at 6-5, 304lbs with LONG arms. NFL scouting reports lists him as a prototypical 5-tech. The knock on Tuitt is his motor, he doesn’t take plays off but he doesn’t play relentlessly like Dockett or Campbell. Maybe a small knock or future indicator…
- DT Ra’Shede Hageman – This guy should be a first round pick. He is HUGE at 6’6, 310lbs (with room to grow) and long arms. When this guy wants it he is probably the second hardest lineman to block outside of Aaron Donald. However when he doesn’t want it, he is just another big body on the field. He has character concerns but his potential is there.
- OLB Kyle Van Noy – The not so secret, secret dark horse of many draftniks and fans. Van Noy has the measurable of a 3-4 OLB, a great back story (check it out, he was adopted). He has natural athletic ability, lettering in four sports in high school and was productive for BYU. Van Noy has some issues with average production as a pass rusher and run stuffer but he does possesses natural athleticism and could be turned into a productive pass rusher with the right coaching.
Jeremiah Attaochu – Another prospect who was mocked to the Cardinals in the first round. Attaochu was one of only three ACC players to have double-digit sacks who played as a standup linebacker, something that gives him an edge over other prospects as the transition to 3-4 OLB won’t be as difficult. Attaochu is a rangy athlete who plays with a high level of intensity, but can play out-of-control. This is a good thing in my mind as like Bruce Arians once said you rather say “Wow, settle down” than “Pick it up!”
- CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste – Here is a CB that many pundits love because of his length at huge 6-3 for a CB. His size is what makes him a day two prospect but because it, it also hurts him. SJB can is very physical at the line but struggles because of average quickness and lateral agility. Many seem him as a potential safety but I see him as a potential for the Cardinals because of his physicality. In the NFC West that’s a big deal.
- CB Lamarcus Joyner – Joyner is undersized at 5-8, but he is a very heady player who plays bigger than his size. Joyner is hurt with his average athleticism as he fits the slot but quick slot guys like Tavon Austin give him trouble with their quickness. He is very smart and is a play maker, so scheme can hide his weakness and exploit his great instincts. Definitely a day three target.
Who did I miss, who did I overrate? Who would you target in day two of the NFL draft?
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