It’s unusual for Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim to not make a trade during an offseason in recent memory.
The last two offseasons saw the Cardinals trade for DeAndre Hopkins in 2020 and Rodney Hudson in 2021. Both were traded for draft picks and the Cardinals didn’t have to part with a first-round pick in either trade.
16 trades have been completed in the 2022 offseason cycle so far, and none have come from the Cardinals.
An analyst thinks the Cardinals will finally dive into the trade waters, but this time on draft day.
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Draft Trade Involves Cardinals
In NFL draft analyst Lance Zierlein’s latest mock draft, the Cardinals are making a draft trade in the first round. Zierlein has the Cardinals trading their own 23rd overall pick to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for the 29th overall pick. The rest of the compensation wasn’t revealed by Zierlein.
With the 23rd overall pick, the Chiefs select wide receiver Chris Olave. It makes sense given the Chiefs have the 30th overall pick as well and traded away All-Pro WR Tyreek Hill to the Dolphins in March.
Six picks later, the Cardinals would draft running back Breece Hall out of Iowa State.
“Trading back with the Chiefs give Arizona additional draft capital — and the Cardinals still get to add a full-package runner with the ability to impact the game on all three downs,” said Zierlein.
Hall recorded 3,044 rushing yards and 41 touchdowns over the past two seasons. He was the first unanimous All-American in Iowa State history in 2022 and finished sixth in the Heisman Trophy vote. Hall squashed questions about his speed at the 2022 NFL Scouting combine, posting a 4.39 second 40-yard-dash.
Most mock drafts don’t have a team selecting a running back in the first round. But the consensus has Hall as the first running back selected in the draft.
Does Trade Make Sense?
With the loss of Chase Edmonds in free agency, having Hall as a compliment to James Conner would give the Cardinals’ offense a jolt of energy. Hall possesses big-play abilities and a knack for being slippery and tough to tackle.
Despite Hall’s exceptional abilities, the Cardinals have voids in other major areas, including edge rusher and wide receiver.
The Cardinals are on the hunt to find a successor at pass rusher after losing All-Pro defender Chandler Jones in free agency. It also would be tough seeing the Cardinals trading down knowing the team could’ve selected Olave, who the Chiefs would then select at 23rd overall. The Cards lost Christian Kirk in free agency, leaving Kyler Murray with a hole at outside receiver.
There is an argument to be made that the Cardinals could use extra draft capital. The team doesn’t have a fourth or fifth-round pick in 2022 due to trading for Zach Ertz and Marco Wilson.
Still, Keim hasn’t drafted a running back in the first or second round in his nine years as general manager. It would be hard to see Keim drafting a running back, especially knowing the value of the pick. The Cardinals already shelled out money for Conner, who’s making the 10th most guaranteed money for a running back.
Would Hall be a great fit for the Cardinals? Absolutely.
But given the fact the Cardinals could draft a running back in the later rounds and select an even more valuable player in the first round, the proposed trade by Zierlein doesn’t quite move the needle.