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Bookends

NFL: Arizona Cardinals Rookie Minicamp Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Background: May 13, 2022; Tempe, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals offensive lineman Marquis Hayes looks on during Rookie Minicamp at Dignity Arizona Cardinals Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale

With the 4th NFL Draft of the Kliff Kingsbury era now in the books, a very interesting pattern of team building has become manifest —- if the Cardinals’ roster was an ark, then Steve Keim , like Noah, has been loading it with pairs of the same species.

Never were such pairings more apparent than with the two sets of bookends the Cardinals acquired and brought on board on Day 2 and Day 3 of the 2022 NFL Draft.

Day 2:

  • SOLB Cameron Thomas (6-5, 270, San Diego St.) and WOLB Myjai Sanders (6-5, 255, Cincinnati).

The New #97:

The New #41:

Day 3:

LG Lecitus Smith (6-3, 320, Virginia Tech) and RG Marquis Hayes (6-5, 324, Oklahoma).

The New #54:

The New #78:

Imagine what a boon it would be for the Cardinals if the bookends of these edge dynamos and bookends of these smash-mouth guards turn into good, highly productive tandems.

More Examples (created in the same or back-to-back NFL Drafts):

  • #92 DT Rashard Lawrence (6-2, 308, LSU) and #95 DT Leki Fotu (6-5, 330, Utah)
  • #66 LT Joshua Miles (6-5, 315, Morgan St.) and #79 RT Josh Jones (6-5, 319, Houston)
  • #11 WILB Isaiah Simmons (6-4, 238, Clemson) and #25 Zaven Collins (6-4, 260, Tulsa)

Young Bookends Created By Draft Picks and Acquisitions:

  • #20 RCB Marco Wilson (5-11, 187, Florida) and #23 LCB Jeff Gladney (5-10, 191, Texas Christian)
  • #4 WR Rondale Moore (5-7, 180, Purdue) and #2 WR Marquise Brown (5-9, 170, Oklahoma)

Ages:

  • OLB/DE Cameron Thomas: 22
  • OLB/DE Myjai Sanders: 22
  • LG Lecitus Smith: 23
  • RG Marquis Hayes: 23
  • DT Rashard Lawrence: 23
  • DT Leki Fotu: 23
  • LT Joshua Miles: 26
  • RT Josh Jones: 24
  • WILB Isaiah Simmons: 23
  • SILB Zaven Collins: 23
  • RCB Marco Wilson: 23
  • LCB Jeff Gladney: 25
  • WR Rondale Moore: 21
  • WR Marquise Brown: 24

Imagine what the development of these young, talented bookends could do for the Arizona Cardinals’ present and future success. They could help create a library of treasured memories.

“Time it was, and what a time it was, it was

A time of innocence, A time of confidences.”

(Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel)