Cards trade-down? Falcons suspected to consider move up in NFL Draft
Apr 15, 2020, 11:52 AM | Updated: Apr 16, 2020, 9:44 pm
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
The Arizona Cardinals are in a maneuverable spot to begin the 2020 NFL Draft.
General manager Steve Keim will be evaluating his position in a few ways.
For one, are the non-quarterbacks in his second or third tier still on the board by the time Arizona makes a pick? Is a team behind them more excited about what’s available, giving the Cardinals a chance to move down and add more picks?
One team that could be a potential trade partner is the Atlanta Falcons. They are interviewing several prospects who will be easily off the table when the are up at No. 16, according NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
He reported Wednesday that the Falcons have been “Facetiming and Zooming with prospects who they really have no chances of getting.”
Rapoport added that a pass-rusher or cornerback might be the target for Atlanta, which he is guessing could trade up “maybe closer to 10 or maybe even over the No. 10 spot.”
Florida product C.J. Henderson is widely evaluated as the second-best cornerback on the board after Ohio State’s Jeff Okudah, and the latter is expected to be a top-five selection. Henderson might have caught Atlanta’s eye, Rapoport suggested.
Henderson should be available at No. 8.
The Falcons enter the 2020 draft with a reputation for trading up as well. General manager Thomas Dimitroff has done so in the first round twice over the past three years.
“I think there’s going to be a lot of really interesting action between (picks) 10 and 20,” Dimitroff told 92.9 The Game in early March. “And again, I would never count us out because again we’re a team that has been active (in past drafts).”
If moving up in the draft is in the cards, Arizona might be intrigued at what Atlanta has to offer compensation-wise.
The Falcons have something the Cardinals don’t, a second-round pick (47th overall). Arizona spun its second-rounder into the DeAndre Hopkins acquisition.
Atlanta also has a third-round pick (78th), two fourth-round picks (119th, 143rd) and a seventh-round selection (228th).
One issue, however, is that the Cardinals might not think there’s enough value at the 16th overall pick if they were to swap first-round choices with the Falcons. It’s possible a run on some of the four top offensive tackles could take their favorite or even second-favorite off the board by that point.
The same goes for which top receivers or defensive tackles are left if players such as CeeDee Lamb, Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs III and Javon Kinlaw are gone by No. 16.
To that point, Dimitroff suggested that there could be the same problem at No. 16 for Atlanta as Arizona might be facing at No. 8.
“That said, it is one of those draft situations where, given some of the depth in some of these positions, it does set up the opportunity to potentially move back,” Dimitroff told 92.9 The Game. “And you know, as long as I’ve been here, we’ve not been a real active team moving back. But again, this year may be one of those years that you could truly look at that and obviously acquire a couple more picks in different parts in the draft to use up to pair together to get up, of course, in another round.”