Dealing Cards: On what’s left of QBs, Daryl Washington and the truth
TEMPE, Ariz. — After all that, the Arizona Cardinals did not take a quarterback 13th overall Thursday.
With North Carolina’s Mitchell Trubisky, Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes and Clemson’s Deshaun Watson off the board by the time they were on the clock, the Cardinals passed on the opportunity to find Carson Palmer’s successor, at least for one more round.
Their choice, instead, was Temple linebacker Haason Reddick.
Maybe that was by design. Or, perhaps the guy the Cardinals wanted was snatched up in front of them, as both Mahomes (10, to Kansas City) and Watson (12, to Houston) were acquired after teams traded up to get them.
We’ll never know what the Cardinals would have done if any of them were available, though that they weren’t still on the board did not come as a surprise to Cardinals GM Steve Keim.
“Yeah, I did,” Keim answered when asked if he thought it was possible three QBs would be taken before their pick came up. “Supply and demand is an issue at that position and whether you like them or not, that value is extremely high.”
Keim added he would not have been shocked if all the quarterbacks were still on the board when Arizona was picking, either.
“This draft, in particular, was extremely hard to forecast the top-12 picks,” he said. “But like I’ve said, this guy (Reddick) was a player that we had graded extremely high.”
Keim said Reddick was one of the top five players on the Cardinals’ draft board, and whether that’s actually true or not we will likely never know.
If the Cardinals do want a quarterback, however, this draft is now short its top three prospects, with the most highly-rated arms now belonging to Cal’s Davis Webb, Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer and Pittsburgh’s Nathan Peterman.
Whether or not the Cardinals have interest in them, or any of the draft’s other passers, is unknown. The Cardinals hold picks No. 45 and 77 in the second and third rounds, respectively, so the quarterback of the future could be in the fold by Friday night.
According to head coach Bruce Arians, talent remains.
“There are a couple good arms still left on the board, yes,” he said.
So, about Daryl Washington …
Tuesday afternoon, news dropped that linebacker Daryl Washington, who had essentially been forgotten about while he was serving an indefinite suspension, was conditionally reinstated by the NFL.
A Pro Bowler in 2012, interest in the 30-year-old’s situation is understandably pretty high, though Keim did not have much to offer when asked about him.
“You know what, I’ll be honest with you,” he said. “For the last 72 hours, I’ve done nothing but stare at college tape and that draft board. At the appropriate time, we’ll address that.
“I’ll be honest with you, I haven’t put a lot of thought into it.”
This time of year is ripe for NFL personnel to skirt the truth, but in this case, it’s easy to believe that the Cardinals really have not given Washington much thought.
Keim did say, however, the appropriate time to speak with Washington will be after the draft.
The truth is hard to find
It’s not that the Cardinals never expressed interest in Reddick, as Keim praised him in a predraft press conference and some mock drafts had him being the Cardinals’ choice.
But in the days, weeks and even months leading up to the pick, many believed the Cardinals were more interest in one of the quarterbacks or players like Alabama’s Reuben Foster or Ohio State’s Malik Hooker.
Keim said Foster, who went at pick No. 31 to San Francisco, is a “hell of a player,” with Arians saying Reddick just brings more flexibility to the linebacker position.
So, did the Cardinals mislead people with regards to their intentions?
“Yeah, there’s always a few games that are played,” Keim admitted. “But, you know that coach and I are the only ones that tell the truth predraft.”
Yeah, about that …
The truth is, Reddick himself felt like the Cardinals would take him based on the feeling he got from the organization when he visited a couple weeks back.
“There was nothing but genuine love, and I felt like I was really wanted out there,” he said.
By all accounts, the Cardinals really did highly-value Reddick, though when asked if the team had thought about maybe moving up in the draft as he continued to slide, Keim offered one more, umm, dodge.
“You wish I’d tell you,” he said. “Maybe.”
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