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Fantasy Football Impact: 2013 Arizona Cardinals Draft

Draft Recap

The Cardinals had two glaring weaknesses last year, quarterback and offensive line. They addressed the QB issue in free agency by dealing for Carson Palmer, and with their first pick they looked to find help on the line by selecting UNC guard Jonathan Cooper. The next three picks added solid depth on the defense, and the ever controversial Tyrann Mathieu gives them another element in the return game to take some of the pressure off Patrick Peterson. The Cards added another guard and then focused on the offensive skill positions in the later rounds.

Jonathan Cooper is not going to be putting up any fantasy points, but his presence will allow Carson Palmer the chance to get some passes off without being hit and will greatly benefit whoever winds up winning the running back job.

Fantasy Impact

Speaking of running backs, the Cards brought in Rashard Mendenhall to compete with Ryan Williams for that job, but they also added two quality backs to the competition in the draft. Stanford’s Stepfan Taylor is a solid all around runner, he doesn’t do much flashy but just gets the job done. Andre Ellington is a slightly smaller change of pace back who is best utilized through the screen and pass game. Mendenhall and Williams both have had problems staying healthy through their careers which could provide an opportunity for either of these rookies to excel.

Ryan Swope has an opportunity to get involved in the pass game working out of the slot when Arizona goes to their 3 and 4 WR sets, but is going to be a third option behind Fitzgerald and Floyd.

D.C. Jefferson is a project at TE and aside from the fact that he’s stuck behind Rob Housler, Jefferson projects to be more of a blocker than a threat in the Cards’ revamped aerial attack.

Draft Results

RoundPickPlayerPositionCollege
17Jonathan CooperGUNC
245Kevin MinterLBLSU
369Tyrann MathieuCBLSU
4103Alex OkaforDETexas
4116Earl WatfordGJames Madison
5140Stepfan TaylorRBStanford
6174Ryan SwopeWRTexas A&M
6187Andre EllingtonRBClemson
7219D.C. JeffersonTERutgers

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