TEMPE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Cardinals might have one of the best guard tandems in the NFL, but that’s this year.
Next year that could change, which is why they drafted Harvard offensive lineman Cole Toner in the fifth round with the 170thh overall pick. He was a tackle for the Crimson, but guard is expected to be his primary position in the NFL. Having that kind of depth behind Evan Mathis and Mike Iupati will be beneficial in the event of an injury.
My take: As long as the Cardinals don’t need or expect Toner to play in 2016, he will end up being a quality pick. He has the football IQ and quick decision-making required for an offensive lineman, but he lacks some size, especially in bulk. But that can be rectified with a season in the weight room. He’ll be a better fit for the Cardinals if he spends the season learning from Iupati and Mathis, while adding some weight, and then coming back next season to compete for a starting spot. The biggest concern with Toner is his lack of experience against high-quality talent. He didn’t face it at Harvard and, by most accounts, struggled at the Senior Bowl.