Report: Cardinals hosting Georgia LB Nolan Smith for top-30 visit
Apr 19, 2023, 8:48 AM
(AP Photo/Erin Hooley)
The Arizona Cardinals are bringing in Georgia linebacker Nolan Smith for a top-30 visit, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
Wednesday marks the final day teams can host draft prospects at their facilities.
Every NFL team is permitted to host up to 30 prospects ahead of the NFL Draft.
Smith appeared in eight games in 2022, recording three sacks, seven tackles for losses and a pass defensed. He lined up primarily at outside linebacker working off the edge.
NFL.com draft analyst Lance Zierlein’s NFL comparison for Smith is Indianapolis Colts linebacker and six-year veteran Samson Ebukam.
Smith is hard to move off of his spot due to his technique and leverage, and he can be disruptive when firing into gaps. … Smith falls below the size standards some team might have for a 3-4 outside linebacker, but he plays team-first defense with quality technique that should help him translate to the pros.
While Smith isn’t viewed as a top-three selection, he could be in the Cardinals’ wheelhouse if Arizona trades out of the third overall pick like many expect it to do.
Smith is projected to go in the first-round of the draft later this month, with the Atlanta Falcons taking him at No. 8 in ESPN analyst Mel Kiper’s latest mock draft.
The Falcons, however, are among the handful of quarterback-needy teams that could be looking to make a move up the draft board depending on how things shake out up top.