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2015 Mock Draft: Arizona Cardinals select Eli Harold, DE/OLB, Virginia 24th overall

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The Cardinals' defense has taken some big blows over the last few months, but they add a potentially big piece

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

The 24th pick of the 2015 Big Blue View Community Mock Draft is in!

24) Arizona Cardinals

GM - CactusJack1984

Pick - Eli Harold, OLB, Virginia

Explanation

I considered four positions here: pass rusher, running back, inside linebacker, or corner. With Gurley off the board at #23, I opted to go with Harold. It's been a meteoric rise up draft boards for him, but he's an excellent fit for Arizona's aggressive 3-4 and gives them the the athletic, disruptive player this defense needs to take the next step. It might be a bit earlier for him than some thought but I see him as a late day 1 or early day 2, so this is a case of need meets decent value. Ultimately, I also thought about Melvin Gordon, but this is a deep draft for RBs. There are also plenty of good ILBs and CBs to be had on days 2 and 3. Although DL isn’t a huge need, I also considered Arik Armstead as a value pick and ideal scheme fit.

Raptor's View

You can never have enough pass rushers, and Harold makes a nice replacement for Jon Abraham. Harold has somehow managed to be a big-time riser throughout the draft process but do so under the radar. Like Abraham, Harold has the athleticism to be a stand-up rusher, and enough size to put his hand in the dirt on nickel downs.

If the Cards can get Daryl Washington back from suspension this year, that defense should recover nicely, though how it will respond to losing Todd Bowles remains to be seen.

The Carolina Panthers are officially On The Clock!

The Picks So Far

  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Jameis Winston (QB, FSU) - Full Story
  2. Tennessee Titans - Marcus Mariota (QB, Oregon) - Full Story
  3. Jacksonville Jaguars - Leonard Williams (DL, USC) - Full Story
  4. Oakland Raiders - Amari Cooper (WR, Alabama) - Full Story
  5. Washington Redskins - Dante Fowler Jr. (DE/OLB, Florida) - Full Story
  6. New York Jets - Kevin White (WR, WVU) - Full Story
  7. Chicago Bears - Vic Beasley (OLB, Clemson) - Full Story
  8. Atlanta Falcons - Alvin "Bud" Dupree  (DE/OLB, Kentucky) - Full Story
  9. New York Giants - DeVante Parker (WR, Louisville) - Full Story
  10. St. Louis Rams - Brandon Scherff (OL, Iowa) - Full Story
  11. Minnesota Vikings - Andrus Peat (OT, Stanford) - Full Story
  12. Cleveland Browns - Danny Shelton (DT, Washington) - Full Story
  13. New Orleans Saints - Randy Gregory (DE/OLB, Nebraska) - Full Story
  14. Miami Dolphins - Trae Waynes (CB, Michigan St.) - Full Story
  15. San Francisco 49ers - La'El Collins (OL, LSU) - Full Story
  16. Houston Texans - Shane Ray (OLB, Missouri) - Full Story
  17. San Diego Chargers - Ereck Flowers (OT, Miami) - Full Story
  18. Kansas City Chiefs - Cam Erving (OL, FSU) - Full Story
  19. Cleveland Browns - Marcus Peters (CB, Washington) - Full Story
  20. Philadelphia Eagles - Landon Collins (S, Alabama) - Full Story
  21. Cincinnati Bengals - Malcom Brown (DT, Texas) - Full Story
  22. Pittsburgh Steelers - Jalen Collins (CB, LSU) - Full Story
  23. Detroit Lions - Todd Gurley (RB, Georgia) - Full Story