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Fan Mock Draft: Cardinals On The Clock


As we inch closer and closer to the Eagles' pick at No. 22, Arizona will represent a key pivot point in the first round of the NFL Draft.

Thus far, two quarterbacks have been selected - Johnny Manziel to the Jaguars and Blake Bortles to the Vikings. Arizona has Carson Palmer at quarterback, but at 34 years old the Cardinals could start to think about the future. At the same time, the Cardinals doubled their win total in Palmer's first season in the desert finishing with a 10-6 record. The only issue is that in the NFC West that record was only good enough for third place.

If the Cardinals think about improving the protection for Palmer, they could select tackles Cyrus Kouandjio or guard/tackle Xavier Su'a-Filo. Arizona has invested in its offensive line signing free agent Jared Veldheer to play left tackle. Last year, Arizona's first-round pick went to guard Jonathan Cooper, who missed the entire season with a broken leg but it by all accounts set to return.

Palmer has a talented duo of receivers to throw the ball up to in Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd, but the Cardinals could select a speedster like Brandin Cooks to complement to two. Starting tight end Rob Housler isn't what most teams are looking for at the position. Head coach Bruce Arians stresses the importance of blocking first so a pass catcher isn't probably going to be the pick here.

On defense, the Cardinals could look to fortify the front seven. Dee Ford could provide a pass-rushing spark off the edge to help the ageless John Abraham. Ryan Shazier projects to inside linebacker in a 3-4 front and could push last year's second-round pick Kevin Minter, who is currently projected as the starter next to Daryl Washington. Starting nose tackle Dan Williams is entering the last year of his contract, so Louis Nix could come in and eventually be the replacement.

On the back end of the defense, the Cardinals have two exciting playmakers in cornerback Patrick Peterson and safety Tyrann Mathieu. At cornerback, the Cardinals could add Bradley Roby or Jason Verrett. Two safeties are off the board, but Jimmie Ward is an option here.

The Eagles' pick at No. 22 is coming into focus. Who will be on the board for the Eagles? Arizona is on the clock and their choice is up to you.

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