Who to Look For: Round 7

Since the Cardinals don't have a sixth round pick (yep, that trade for Brandon Gorin really worked out well), CardinalInsider is moving on to the seventh. We feel the Red Birds should (and will) take a quarterback to carry Matt Leinart's golf bags. Who will that be? The answer may surprise you.

Before the draft started, I had advocated Jeff Rowe of Reno-Nevada.  Since Cincinnati just grabbed him, I am prepared to move on.

The reason for this is that both Chris Leak and Troy Smith are available and Ken Whisenhunt is the coach of the Arizona Cardinals.

Leak and Smith are both tremendous athletes with impressive collegiate resumes that both happen to have the disease of being six feet tall, or at least just a shade under or over six feet tall.

Not only have they both been on the biggest stage under the bright lights of the National Championship Game, they both have considerable arm strength, can make all the throws, and have been the leaders of complicated offenses.

And, honestly, can anyone say that either of these guys is worse than John Navarre or Shane Boyd?  Both of those guys do happen to be taller than Smith or Leak, but neither has the athletic ability or the x-factor (you knew I had to build up to trick plays eventually, right?) that the former Buckeye and former Gator have.

While neither player is looking to give up on the idea of playing quarterback in the NFL and neither of them are prepared to step in at wide receiver, that doesn't mean that Whisenhunt couldn't line one of them up in the backfield with Matt Leinart and try a little trickery.

Additionally, Whisenhunt's mentor, Mike Mularky, did have success with Kordell Stewart (who is 6'1", by the by) when all three were with the Steelers.  He had success when he was able to get Stewart outside the pocket and give him the chance to use his feet and athleticism to move the football down the field.  Also, neither Smith nor Leak would need to take over the back-up role immediately, since the Cardinals do already have a capable back-up in place in Kurt Warner.

All of these factors give Arizona the time they need to patiently develop either young quarterback and allows Whisenhunt the opportunity to get creative in the meantime.

If they want to go safe and conservative, they could always take UTEP's Jordan Palmer, who is Carson's brother.

If they decide to go defense (and Denver has already taken John Wendling), they will most likely opt for a defensive back that can help them on special teams such as Joe Porter of Rutgers, Northwestern's Marquice Cole, Darius Vinnett of Arkansas.  All three have sub-4.4 times in the 40, and all four would perform very well as a gunner or a wedge buster on the coverage teams.


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