One expert praises Monti Ossenfort and the Arizona Cardinals 2023 draft haul
By Sion Fawkes
Mel Kiper Jr. is arguably the most trusted draft expert out there, and he had good things to say about the Arizona Cardinals.
Amidst an offseason of turmoil and an NFL Draft that started with news of the Arizona Cardinals trading a few picks to the Philadelphia Eagles thanks to alleged tampering, it looked as though the 2023 NFL Draft was going to be yet another ill-fated affair. Fortunately, it didn’t turn out that way in my eyes, nor did it in the eyes of Mel Kiper Jr.
Kiper gave the Redbirds a solid A-, citing the way general manager Monti Ossenfort traded and added much-needed draft picks for 2024. He was also a fan of the Paris Johnson selection, and he also cited the “long view” Ossenfort is taking with this team, and it’s something former general manager Steve Keim was never capable of.
Kiper also had great things to say about quarterback Clayton Tune. And while I believe the rook will probably spend Year 1 on the practice squad, there is a good chance the kid ends up as a high-end backup for Kyler Murray in time.
Arizona Cardinals get high draft grade from Mel Kiper Jr.
B.J. Ojulari is a player who will only add value in his ability to relentlessly pressure the quarterback, and it’s something Kiper also implied, citing the edge rusher’s 41 quarterback pressures in 2022 alone. He also praised Owen Pappoe, a pick that I initially didn’t care for until a few minutes later when I realized that it likely implied Zaven Collins and Isaiah Simmons seeing time elsewhere on the defense.
While Kiper did acknowledge the Arizona Cardinals could have taken a running back (and they should have), he overall had nothing but good things to say about Monti Ossenfort’s NFL Draft debut. And for those words to come from one of the top draft experts out there, I’ll take it any day of the week.
Source: 2023 NFL draft grades for all 32 teams: Mel Kiper's steals, sleepers by Mel Kiper, ESPN.com