Cardinals TE draftee Trey McBride ‘can do it all,’ GM says

Apr 29, 2022, 6:59 PM | Updated: 7:11 pm
Tight end Trey McBride #85 of the Colorado State Rams dives out of bounds during the first half in ...
Tight end Trey McBride #85 of the Colorado State Rams dives out of bounds during the first half in front of defensive back Matt Hankins #8 of the Iowa Hawkeyes at Kinnick Stadium on September 25, 2021 in Iowa City, Iowa. (Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images)
(Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images)

TEMPE — Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim was “close” to trading out of the 55th overall pick.

But when the pick rolled around Friday afternoon and Colorado State tight end Trey McBride was still on the board, there were no ifs, ands or buts about it: That was Arizona’s guy.

“By far (the best player available), highest grade,” Keim said after making the second-round pick. “People ask, ‘What do you like about him?’ The question is, ‘What is there not to like about him?’ Special human, special player, rare stats.

“The guy can do it all. He’s got tremendous hands, great catching radius, really strong in the crowd. Character is off the charts, three-time captain, phenomenal leader. Just thankful he was there.”

Instead of adding a position of need, most notably pass rusher, Keim and Co. stuck with the best available prospect on their board.

The defense still needs a remedy along the edge, but quarterback Kyler Murray has yet another pair of hands to incorporate in the offense moving forward.

“We always have to remember that we owe it to the organization to do the right thing for not only today but tomorrow and the future,” Keim said.

“We’ve got a young quarterback we’re excited about, we got a 24-year-old receiver we added yesterday and we just added another young, dynamic playmaker as a tight end so it made sense in every way.”

McBride, who is familiar with Arizona having trained at EXOS, marked the first tight end to be drafted this week, and his stats speak for his abilities. Last season as a senior, McBride set career marks in receiving yards (1,121) and catches (90) to go along with one touchdown.

For his efforts, he was honored with the Mackey Award, which is handed out to the best tight end in the country.

“I think I’m a very unique guy,” McBride said over a conference call. “I think I’m a guy who really can do it all. I’m a guy who can be an asset in the run game, go and put people on their back and make plays.

“Also, I think I’m a guy who can go and catch balls and be a third-down tight end. So I think it’s truly unique and exciting in that aspect because I really feel like I could do it all and be an asset in both the run game and the pass game.”

Above all else, McBride can act as a solid insurance policy as fellow tight end Maxx Williams recovers from his season-ending knee injury. If Williams is not ready to go, McBride could fight for playing time immediately alongside Zach Ertz.

Head coach Kliff Kingsbury said that while Williams is constantly rehabbing and doing everything he can, there is no set timetable on his return.

“You can never have enough guys like that, with his athleticism, pass-catching ability,” Kingsbury said. “Just tremendous upside, tremendous athlete. … The character’s through the roof.

“We did not think this guy would be there,” Kingsbury added. “Big get for us.”

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Cardinals TE draftee Trey McBride ‘can do it all,’ GM says