2014 NFL Draft: Arizona Cardinals No. 20 Pick

Posted Apr 7, 2014

The Arizona Cardinals will take...? Breaking down and calling No. 20

2014 NFL Draft

Analyzing No. 20

By Pete Fiutak 
Follow ... please! @ColFootballNews

- VOD COMING: Check out Fiu breaking down the No. 20 overall pick, and the rest of the first round.

Last Ten No. 20 Overall Picks
Did the pick work for the team
that drafted him

5 - Hall of Fame potential
4 - Star Starter
3 - Average Starter
2 - Backup and/or disappointing
1 - Total Bust

2013 OG Kyle Long
Oregon (Chicago)
Did It Work Rating: 3.5

2012 WR Kendall Wright
Baylor (Tennessee)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2011 DE Adrian Clayborn
Iowa (Tampa Bay)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2010 DB Kareem Jackson
Alabama (Houston)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2009 TE Brandon Pettigrew
Oklahoma State (Detroit)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2008 DB Aqib Talib
Kansas (Tampa Bay)
Did It Work Rating: 3.5

2007 DB Aaron Ross
Texas (NY Giants)
Did It Work Rating: 2

2006 Tamba Hali
Penn State (Kansas City)
Did It Work Rating: 4

2005 DE Marcus Spears
LSU (Dallas)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2004 DE Kenechi Udeze
USC (Minnesota)
Did It Work Rating: 2

Arizona Cardinals
(scroll down for the last ten Tennessee first round picks and how they worked out.)

And now come the big choices. If things go according to plan, there should be several big names on the board and several right options for a team that needs help on the offensive line and, despite the emergence of Tryann Mathieu and the superstardom of Patrick Peterson, the defensive backfield.

Arizona got screwed in the playoff world last year, going 10-6 but missing out thanks to being in the NFC West, so now there's an interesting call to make in the draft. Do the Cardinals try for that one big missing piece of the puzzle, or do they try to go after the firepower to take on Seattle and San Francisco teams that don't appear to be taking a dive any time soon.

While last year's first round draft pick – guard Jonathan Cooper – wasn't able to show what he could do after getting injured, for the most part, Arizona has done okay with its first round picks. Oddly enough, two of the biggest recent misses were two of the highest-profile picks – RB Beanie Wells in 2009 and QB Matt Leinart in 2006, but the team went big getting CB Patrick Peterson in 2011 and have gotten decent value for the picks since selecting future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald in 2004.

The secondary was a big focus this offseason, while some interesting moves were made taking promising castoffs like WR Ted Ginn and OT Jared Veldheer to see what Arizona can get in terms of depth and options, but running back is iffy even after signing Jonathan Dwyer – the retirement of Rashard Mendenhall took away a decent part to the rotation.

The 20th pick has been good over the last few years – at least better than some of the picks coming before it – with Chicago taking a change and hitting it with Kyle Long last year, and excellent stars like Aqib Talib in 2008 and Tamba Hali in 2006 were good chances to take.

Arizona needs its good starter of its own, and if it works out, this could be the pick that takes the team over the hump.

Arizona Needs A …

Outside Linebacker – The Cardinals aren't too awful here, but they need an upgrade in youth and talent. There might not be a sure-thing star here worth taking this high, but at some point in the early rounds this has to be a priority. Speed is a must, but overall playmaking ability and being a cheap starter is more important.
Realistic Option: Ryan Shazier, Ohio State

Offensive Tackle – Getting Jared Veldheer helped, but he's not necessarily the type to build a line around. Beefing up the guard play would be nice, but tackle is the big key. Like other key area, the Cardinal have to get younger and better. Overall, the line should get a big boost when Jonathan Cooper is back at guard.
Realistic Option: Morgan Moses, Virginia or Cyrus Kouandjio, ALabama

Quarterback – Carson Palmer came up with a nice season, but he's turning 35 this year, and Arizona has a huge call to make. Does it go after the "quarterback of the future" now and take a mediocre one at some point to groom, or does it pull a Brett Favre-Aaron Rodgers and buy its eventual starter late in the first round? It'll depend who's on the board.
Realistic Option: Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M or Derek Carr, Fresno State

The Pick Will Be …

QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M – Here's the call. Everyone who needs a quarterback in the first round will like the idea of Manziel, and his pro day got the job done, but there are way, way too many concerns about his 1) height, 2) size, 3) ability to consistently throw like a pro quarterback, 4) durability and 5) his height and size. He's not going to go in the top five like many originally thought, but he's not going to slide out of the first round like some scouts are hinting at. The 20 is a good chance to take on greatness. Palmer still has at least one more great year left, and the Cardinals can use the time to figure out if it has their new star, or if they bought another Matt Leinart.

Arizona's Last Ten First Round Picks 
Did the pick work for the team that drafted him?

5 - Hall of Fame potential
4 - Star Starter
3 - Average Starter
2 - Backup and/or disappointing
1 - Total Bust

2013 OG Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina (7th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 1

2012 WR Michael Floyd, Notre Dame (13th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2011 CB Patrick Peterson, LSU (5th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 4.5

2010 DT Dan Williams, Tennessee (26th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2009 RB Chris Wells, Ohio State (31st overall)
Did It Work Rating: 2.5

2008 CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Tennessee State (16th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2007 OT Levi Brown, Penn State (5th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 3

2006 QB Matt Leinart, USC (10th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 1

2005 CB Antrel Rolle, MIami (8th overall)
Did It Work Rating: 2.5

2004 WR Larry Fitzgerald, Pitt (3rd overall)
Did It Work Rating: 5