Cardinals Draft Projections: Final Version

From the first day of the offseason, has been in overdrive. Team expert Amberly Richardson puts it in park and takes one last crack at the Cardinals draft projections. Here are the whos and whys of the Cardinals possible picks. And the next rookie taking the mound is...

1. Aqib Talib, CB, Kansas- Arizona has serious depth issues in the secondary and will likely go with the best available corner when pick 16 rolls around. The Cardinals need somebody capable of competing for a starting job right out of the gate. When the ball is in the air, Talib finds his way to it. His big-play mentality is exactly what the Cardinals need to fill the void Antrel Rolle's move created. A running back is very tempting at No. 16, but there are many more options available beyond the first round. Talib has two off-the-field infractions, but he isn't a bad seed. He has an unmatched drive to succeed and the Cardinals will want to hop on that train.

2. Chris Johnson, RB, East Carolina- Johnson has the promise, talent and speed to be a first-rounder, but the deep pool of running backs keeps him available at No. 50. The Cardinals brought Johnson in for a private visit and it's easy to understand why. Johnson's play at the next level will silence critics who say he's not an every down back. He would be the perfect complement to Edgerrin James and could take over when James' wheels stop turning.

3. Jerome Simpson, WR, Coastal Carolina- The Cardinals are looking to replace Bryant Johnson and create depth behind their superstars. Arizona's wide receivers coach, Mike Miller, made the trek to South Carolina to watch film with Simpson. The Cardinals don't typically go for the small-school guys, but Simpson's is exceptional. He has soft hands and proved his speed with a 4.42 in the 40-yard dash.

4. DeMario Pressley, DL, North Carolina State- The Cardinals need a defensive lineman to take the burden off of Darnell Dockett, as well as occupy a couple blockers. His previous injuries will be the root of why he is available so late.

5. Barry Richardson, OT, Clemson- Rod Graves could capitalize on Richardson soaring below the radar. He's as healthy as a horse (didn't have an injury in four years) and has a massive stature (6'6", 320 pounds). The O-line made huge improvements last season and, with Richardson in the mix, it will top the competition.

6. Ben Moffitt, ILB, South Florida- Arizona doesn't have a pressing need for linebacker, but the inside could use some help. Moffitt has recently spoken with the Cardinals staff and is on his way to wearing Red & White. He is persistent on the attack, instinctive and will crack the roster with his play-making ability.

7. Jonathan Zenon, CB, LSU- With non-existent depth for secondary coach Teryl Austin to work with at cornerback, the Cardinals could pick up two cover men. Zenon has excellent cover skills and quick reaction speed. His experience against top-level competition makes him a steal this late.

Amberly Richardson is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and a correspondent for She has contributed to the official Web sites of several NFL players for Sixthman Communications. Her analysis has been published by the NFL Network, Fox Sports and MySpace Sports.

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