It would be incredibly difficult to predict which direction the Arizona Cardinals will go in when the time comes for them to make their first-round draft selection. The team has a plethora of needs, so it would be far from easy to pinpoint which college youngster will be taken with the franchise’s 16th-overall pick. Addressing the cornerback spot is definitely a possibility, and there are a couple of cover guys who could tempt the organization on April 29th.
One corner who Arizona could show interest in is Virginia Tech’s Caleb Farley. The 22-year old, along with the University of Alabama’s Patrick Surtain II, is considered one of the position’s can’t-miss prospects. Could Cards general manager Steve Keim decide that Farley would be worth the investment?
Farley’s last action on the playing field came back in 2019, when he was a sophomore at Virginia Tech. The talented defender registered 20 tackles, four interceptions (one a pick-six) and an impressive 12 pass breakups in 10 games for the Hokies. Farley earned First-team All-ACC honors for that outstanding performance in ’19.
The year before, in 2018, Farley had another solid campaign for Virginia Tech. The 6’2, 207 pounder tallied 36 tackles, two picks, seven passes defensed and a sack in 13 appearances as a freshman. Farley, like many other NCAA players, opted out of the 2020 season due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Free agency could leave Arizona with a major hole in it’s defensive backfield. Patrick Peterson, an eight-time Pro Bowler, will be seeking a new contract in 2021. The 30-year old was a vital part of the Cardinals secondary for a significant amount of time, but his play has declined over the past couple of campaigns.
Another one of the squad’s veteran corners, Dre Kirkpatrick, is also expected to test the free agent waters. The 31-year old played well for the Cards last year, but the longtime member of the Cincinnati Bengals could also be moving on this offseason. While Peterson and Kirkpatrick may be on the downside of their NFL careers, it will still be a tough task for Arizona’s front office to find suitable replacements for both of them.
It appears that a talent like Farley could certainly help in that department. Fans of the Cardinals can add the cornerback to the club’s first-round option list that seems to be getting larger by the day.