PFF draft board: Arizona Cardinals

Analyst Jordan Plocher takes a pick-by-pick look at the 2016 draft prospects that best fit the Cardinals' needs.

| 8 months ago
(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

PFF draft board: Arizona Cardinals


PFF is putting together team-specific draft boards for all 32 franchises using our draft rankings and evaluation of how each player fits in specific schemes.

Included are three ideal targets for each team with their first-, second-, and third-round picks, along with a team-specific draft board (at the bottom of this article) that includes every player in PFF’s draft rankings.

Here is the entry for the Arizona Cardinals:

Round 1 (29th overall)

Eli Apple, CB, Ohio State

The Cardinals’ defense relies heavily on man-coverage, and that is what Apple does best. While the former Buckeye does have the size and speed to be a starting NFL cornerback, Patrick Peterson will often follow the opposition’s best receiver, leaving Apple with easier weekly match-ups as he learns to play the position in the pros.

Ryan Kelly, C, Alabama

General Manager Steve Keim has upgraded the Cardinals’ offensive line significantly during his tenure, but he’s done so mostly with free agents. The Cardinals need to get younger up front; Kelly didn’t allow a sack all season and can be their Week 1 starter at center.

Karl Joseph, S, West Virginia

When Deone Bucannon was originally drafted, it was to play safety and not inside linebacker; with that position-switch now permanent, the Cardinals could go back to the draft to get their playmaking safety. Joseph’s physicality and versatility would be a good fit in Arizona’s creative defense.

Round 2 (63rd overall)

Traded to the New England Patriots.

Round 3 (92nd overall)

Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State

Cook led the draft class in deep passing accuracy (59.4 percent), so he fits what Bruce Arians wants to do on offense. The former Spartan can sit and watch Carson Palmer prepare and execute gameplans for three years and then step in as the starter.

Spencer Drango, G, Baylor

PFF has historically been very high on Evan Mathis, but this could very well be his last year in the league. Spencer Drango can provide the Cardinals with instant depth, but he would most likely be “redshirted” a year—much like last year’s first-round selection D.J. Humphries—and step in to Evan Mathis’ spot in 2017.

Matt Skura, C, Duke

This draft class is deep at center, so if the Cardinals can’t land one earlier in the draft, they could add one here in Matt Skura. While not as polished as Alabama’s Ryan Kelly, Skura also didn’t yield a sack in 2015, and could become the Cardinals’ starter in a year or two.

PlayerPositionSchoolPFF Draft BoardArizona Cardinals Draft Board
DeForest BucknerDIOregon21
Laremy TunsilOTOle Miss52
Jalen RamseyCBFlorida State33
Joey BosaEDGEOhio State14
Myles JackLBUCLA65
Sheldon RankinsDILouisville86
Jack ConklinOTMichigan State137
Chris JonesDIMississippi State128
Carson WentzQBNorth Dakota State149
Ezekiel ElliottRBOhio State710
Corey ColemanWRBaylor911
Jarran ReedDIAlabama2012
Josh DoctsonWRTCU1013
Cody WhitehairGKansas State1714
Jared GoffQBCal415
Leonard FloydEDGEGeorgia1916
Reggie RaglandLBAlabama2616
Karl JosephSWest Virginia3018
Mackenzie AlexanderCBClemson2119
Shaq LawsonEDGEClemson1120
Vernon ButlerDILouisiana Tech3221
William Jackson IIICBHouston1522
Shilique CalhounEDGEMichigan State2923
Ryan KellyCAlabama4224
Andrew BillingsDIBaylor2225
Eli AppleCBOhio State3126
Jaylon SmithLBNotre Dame2527
Jonathan BullardDIFlorida2728
Noah SpenceEDGEEastern Kentucky3629
Taylor DeckerOTOhio State5230
Ronnie StanleyOTNotre Dame1631
Paxton LynchQBMemphis5532
Jerell AdamsTESouth Carolina5933
Leonte CarrooWRRutgers3534
Joshua GarnettGStanford5035
Sterling ShepardWROklahoma2336
Adolphus WashingtonDIOhio State4337
Scooby Wright IIILBArizona7138
Vernon HargreavesCBFlorida1839
Laquon TreadwellWROle Miss2840
Connor CookQBMichigan State7541
Kyler FackrellEDGEUtah State6542
Bronson KaufusiEDGEBYU6643
Hassan RidgewayDITexas5744
Kenny ClarkDIUCLA5844
Sheldon DayDINotre Dame3446
Will FullerWRNotre Dame6047
Shon ColemanOTAuburn9148
Michael Thomas (SM)WRSouthern Miss3849
Kalan ReedCBSouthern Miss5450
Keyarris GarrettWRTulsa6451
Austin JohnsonDIPenn State3952
Kevin ByardSMiddle Tennessee State7353
Kamalei CorreaEDGEBoise State7854
Dean LowryDINorthwestern9754
Nick MartinCNotre Dame4556
Jason SpriggsOTIndiana4656
A'Shawn RobinsonDIAlabama4158
Robert NkemdicheDIOle Miss4458
Kenneth DixonRBLouisiana Tech4760
Michael Thomas (OSU)WROhio State2461
Nick KwiatkowskiLBWest Virginia7662
Joe ThuneyOTNC State5163
Steven DanielsLBBoston College10164
Paul PerkinsRBUCLA4965
Jeremy CashSDuke5366
Su'a CravensLBUSC4867
Jordan HowardRBIndiana5668
Kevin DoddEDGEClemson7069
Darius LathamDIIndiana8470
Joe SchobertEDGEWisconsin7471
Matt SkuraCDuke12872
Rashard HigginsWRColorado State4073
Pharoh CooperWRSouth Carolina9674
Spencer DrangoGBaylor10774
Willie HenryDIMichigan9976
Hunter HenryTEArkansas3377
Kevin PetersonCBOklahoma State9478
Isaac SeumaloGOregon State6379
Le'Raven ClarkOTTexas Tech11980
Javon HargraveDISouth Carolina State7981
Darron LeeLBOhio State8181
Vonn BellSOhio State9083
De'Vante HarrisCBTexas A&M6984
Sebastian TretolaGArkansas12684
Alex CollinsRBArkansas8786
Joshua PerryLBOhio State8687
Thomas DuarteTEUCLA8987
David MorganTEUTSA15389
Emmanuel OgbahEDGEOklahoma State3790
Devin LucienWRArizona State9291
Xavien HowardCBBaylor8092
Austin HooperTEStanford12592
Malcolm MitchellWRGeorgia6794
Christian WestermanGArizona State8595
Joe DahlOTWashington State11296
Cre'Von LeBlancCBFlorida Atlantic9397
Germain IfediOTTexas A&M18298
Maliek CollinsDINebraska6199
Anthony ZettelDIPenn State11499
Darrell GreeneGSan Diego State157101
Braxton MillerWROhio State98102
Carl NassibEDGEPenn State68103
Aaron BurbridgeWRMichigan State138104
Cyrus JonesCBAlabama77105
Austin BlytheCIowa203106
Jordan PaytonWRUCLA118107
Nick VanHooseCBNorthwestern88108
Tyler BoydWRPittsburgh82109
Kentrell BrothersLBMissouri108109
Ronald BlairEDGEAppalachian State102111
Matt IoannidisDITemple124112
Devon CajusteTEStanford174113
Nelson SpruceWRColorado145114
Will AnthonyEDGENavy132115
Cardale JonesQBOhio State222116
Darian ThompsonSBoise State83117
Tajae SharpeWRUmass180118
Daniel BravermanWRWestern Michigan62119
Kyle MurphyOTStanford72120
Demarcus AyersWRHouston150121
Brandon DoughtyQBWestern Kentucky109122
Jake McGeeTEFlorida123123
Derrick HenryRBAlabama95124
Jakeem GrantWRTexas Tech173124
Henry Krieger-CobleTEIowa230126
Tavon YoungCBTemple115127
Matt JohnsonQBBowling Green110128
Vernon Adams, JRQBOregon111128
Jayron KearseSClemson120130
Jordan JenkinsEDGEGeorgia127131
Landon TurnerGNorth Carolina133131
Yannick NgakoueEDGEMaryland134133
Will ParksSArizona100134
Devontae BookerRBUtah103135
Will RedmondCBMississippi State116136
Jihad WardDIIllinois159137
Tyler GrayLBBoise State160137
D.J. ReaderDIClemson162137
Terrell LathanDITCU167137
Artie BurnsCBMiami144141
Nila KasitatiGOklahoma152141
Terrell ChestnutCBWest Virginia129143
Joe HaegOTNorth Dakota State117144
Jack AllenCMichigan State122144
Nile Lawrence-StampleDIFlorida State148146
Jacoby BrissettQBNC State151146
Dadi Lhomme NicholasEDGEVirginia Tech161146
Aaron WallaceEDGEUCLA166146
Kyle RoseDIWest Virginia168146
Sterling BaileyDIGeorgia170146
Delvon SimmonsDIUSC175146
Brennan ScarlettDIStanford178146
Brandon ShellOTSouth Carolina191154
Jatavis BrownLBAkron131155
Alex McCalisterEDGEFlorida169156
C.J. ProsiseRBNotre Dame105157
Demarcus RobinsonWRFlorida140158
Daniel LascoRBCal141158
Keanu NealSFlorida176160
Trevone BoykinQBTCU142161
Tyrone HolmesEDGEMontana130162
Bryson AlbrightEDGEMiami (OH)195163
Travis FeeneyEDGEWashington196163
Brandon AllenQBArkansas104165
Kevin HoganQBStanford143165
Jeff DriskelQBLouisiana Tech149165
Quniton JeffersonDIMaryland210165
Miles KillebrewSSouther Utah187169
Charles TapperEDGEOklahoma136170
Justin SimmonsSBoston College163171
Eric MurrayCBMinnesota154172
D.J. PettwayEDGEAlabama211172
Kenyan DrakeRBAlabama135174
Jonathan WilliamsRBArkansas137174
Dak PrescottQBMississippi State221176
Adam GotsisDIGeorgia Tech177177
D.J. WhiteCBGeorgia Tech155178
Graham GlasgowGMichigan158178
Eric StrikerEDGEOklahoma165178
Ian SeauEDGENevada219181
Matt JudonEDGEGrand Valley State220181
Rashard RobinsonCBLSU200183
Praise Martin-OguikeEDGETemple208183
KeiVarae RussellCBNotre Dame171185
Corey TindalCBMarshall172185
Byron MarshallWROregon121187
B.J. GoodsonLBClemson146188
Clayton FejedelemSIllinois201189
Tanner McEvoySWisconsin206189
Jhurell PressleyRBNew Mexico179191
Kolby ListenbeeWRTCU181191
Cory JohnsonDIKentucky156193
Blake MartinezLBStanford198194
Mike RoseEDGENC State223195
Boston StiversonGKansas State237195
Jarell BroxtonGBaylor238195
Vadal AlexanderGLSU243195
Victor OchiEDGEStony Brook244195
Cory LittletonEDGEWashington246195
Cody CoreWROle Miss184201
Kenny LawlerWRCal193201
Ryker MathewsGBYU164203
Curt MaggittEDGETennessee207204
Ted KarrasGIllinois213204
T.J. GreenSClemson217206
Roger LewisWRBowling Green224207
Cody KesslerQBUSC106208
Tyler RobertsLBTroy215208
Max TuerkCUSC113210
Alex LewisOTNebraska183210
Joey HuntCTCU189210
Tyler MatakevichLBTemple185213
Trevon ColeyDIFlorida Atlantic186213
Perez FordLBNorthern Illinois188213
John TheusOTGeorgia231216
Jerald HawkinsOTLSU232216
Mike HiltonSOle Miss233216
Jesse ChapmanCAppalachian State241216
Jake BrendelCUCLA245216
Justin MurrayOTCincinnati249216
Rees OdhiamboGBoise State190222
Eddie YarbroughEDGEWyoming192222
Connor WujciakDIBoston College204224
Nick VigilLBUtah State205224
Vincent ValentineDINebraska234226
Martavius FosterDIColorado State240226
Nick ArbuckleQBGeorgia State242226
Deion JonesLBLSU250226
Jenson StoshakWRFlorida Atlantic214230
Jordan WilliamsWRBall State218230
DeAndre WashingtonRBTexas Tech194232
Tyler ErvinRBSan Jose State197232
Donte DeayonCBBoise State199234
Connor McGovernGMissouri202234
Caleb AzubikeEDGEVanderbilt209234
Prince Charles IworahCBWestern Kentucky225237
Jalen MillsCBLSU247237
Jimmy BeanEDGEOklahoma State248237
Kendall FullerCBVirginia Tech139240
Teddy RubenWRTroy212241
Mitch MathewsWRBYU226242
Charone PeakeWRClemson229242
Josh FergusonRBIllinois235242
Chris MooreWRCincinnati236242
Trevor DavisWRCal239242
Taveze CalhounCBMississippi State147247
D.J. FosterWRArizona State216248
Alex EricksonWRWisconsin227249
Wendell SmallwoodRBWest Virginia228249
  • themacabre

    No way Cook lands in the 3rd rnd. I can see him ending up in Denver at 31 since they need a QB, he’s been in a pro ready offense for 3 yrs, and they get that 5th year option….something they did not get with Osweiller…