Cardinals could trade up from No. 27 for a cornerback, ESPN says

After some successful maneuvering a year ago, Arizona Cardinals general manager Monti Ossenfort is poised to do the same in the 2024 NFL Draft.

While wide receiver may be the team’s biggest need in the draft, that’s likely a box that can be checked with the Cardinals’ top pick, which sits at No. 4 before any potential trades go down.

Cornerback is an area of deep need as well.

As ESPN’s Josh Weinfuss noted in a recent draft buzz story, all of the returning corners from last year’s defense who started a game carry fewer than three years of experience with them, including Kei’Trel Clark, Starling Thomas and Garrett Williams, who each flashed as rookies.

Arizona brought in Sean Murphy-Bunting during free agency, an addition that can shore up one starting corner spot, but as ESPN’s Jordan Reid added, the team could use someone with more upside who can fit into the CB1 slot.

Ossenfort is known for wheeling and dealing during the draft, and since the Cardinals are tied for the most picks this year (11), I’d expect more of the same. It shouldn’t come as a surprise if Arizona gets aggressive and attempts to move up from No. 27 for a cornerback on Day 1. Murphy-Bunting is more of a CB2. There’s a glaring need for a high-upside CB1, and Nate Wiggins (Clemson) and Kool-Aid McKinstry (Alabama) could be Day 1 options for a roster still in the talent collection portion of its rebuild.

Wiggins impressed at the combine with a 40-yard dash time of 4.28 and earned the fourth-best total combine score (combining production and athleticism) among corners, per Next Gen Stats.

McKinstry came into the season as one of the top corner prospects but saw his stock fall during a lackluster junior season. He finished one spot behind Wiggins in the same Next Gen Stats category.

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