Mel Kiper’s new mock draft has Cardinals landing talented CB

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Jess Root
·2 min read
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It is NFL draft season and that means mock drafts for the next few months. While there will be scores of them in the coming weeks and months, few get more attention than those that ESPN analyst Mel Kiper puts together.

He released his first mock draft of 2021 and, as things go at this time of year, it is an attempt to balance needs with talent.

For the Arizona Cardinals, who pick 16th in the first round, he has them filling one of their biggest needs of the offseason, landing a talented cornerback.

As of now, he projects the Cardinals will select Virginia Tech cornerback Caleb Farley.

Arizona could have openings at both corner spots this offseason, with veterans Patrick Peterson and Dre Kirkpatrick both on the free-agent market. If the Cardinals decide to move on from the over-30 corners, this is the best place to find a new starter. One of the first prospects to opt out of the season, the 6-foot-2 Farley looked like a star on the 2019 tape, but he is still raw. He has played defensive back only since 2018. I could also see the Cardinals keeping an eye on the wide receivers in this class; Christian Kirk has not been consistent enough to show that he can be their No. 2 wideout alongside DeAndre Hopkins.

Farley did not play in 2020 choosing to opt out of the pandemic season. He had four interceptions and 12 pas breakups in 2019 as a sophomore. He has great length for the position and is believed to be blazing fast.

As the draft approaches, it will be interesting to see how far up in the first round he goes in mock drafts. Long, fast corners with ball skills don’t tend to last to the middle of the first round, but if he does, he would make a nice addition to a secondary that needs help.

Listen to the latest from Cards Wire’s Jess Root on his podcast, Rise Up, See Red. Subscribe on Apple podcasts or Spotify.

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