Friday, May 6, 2022

Cardinals rookie named one of the greatest steals of the NFL draft

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The Arizona Cardinals drafted a total of eight players in the 2022 NFL draft and may have found amazing value in one particular prospect.

Bleacher Report’s Alex Kay opened up about the biggest steal in the draft by any NFL team.

Kay included the Cardinals when writing this Virginia Tech offensive lineman blacksmith delivered the greatest value in the sixth round with 215th place overall.

“Smith was ranked as one of the top 10 inside offense candidates this year, with the B/R scouting department citing his experience — he started 36 games at left for the Hokies — a robust build and excellent pass blocking skills,” Kay wrote.

“Nevertheless, the Cardinals should be thrilled that they’ve landed a player who has the opportunity to make an instant impact down an offensive line who could use the help,” Kay continued. “He might not be a first-year starter but he should be included in the squad and has a great opportunity to earn a rotational role early on with the benefit of more.”

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Kay went on to point out why Smith fell to the Cardinals in the sixth round.

“Nevertheless, Smith only came off the board towards the end of the sixth round. It was quite a surprise fall, but he’s struggled with consistency as a run blocker and isn’t the ideal size for an NFL guard.”

Smith is at 6-3 and weighs 314 pounds, which may put the young offensive lineman in contention at right flank. With the likes of Will Hernandez, Josh Jones and Justin Murray, the Cardinals don’t have a solid right guard on their roster.

Smith started at left in nine of his ten games for the Hokies in 2021. He was also an honorable mention from All-ACC 2020.

NFL Network’s Lance Zierlein wrote about Smith’s pros and cons.

Smith is also intriguing as he has only allowed two sacks of 581 pass-blocking snaps per since 2020 Focus on professional football.

In case you missed it, offensive lineman Marquise Hayes was the Cardinals’ last pick in the seventh round, which started 13 games for Oklahoma.

He was selected to the second-team All-Big 12 due to Hayes’ efforts. He played with Kyler Murray and Marquise Brown in 2017 and 2018. Brown is now a Cardinal after being traded from the Baltimore Ravens for a first-round pick.

Hayes spoke to reporters about reuniting with his two former teammates.

“I know Kyler; we’re good friends,” Hayes said of Sports Illustrated’s Alex Weiner. “And Hollywood Brown too, so those are good, familiar relationships.”

He was a three-year starter at left guard for the Sooners. At 6-foot-5 and 318 pounds, Hayes is fit to end up as an NFL offensive guard.

Hayes spoke to reporters about reuniting with his two former teammates.

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