Mel Kiper's fifth mock draft for 2011 provides the foundation for discussing how NFC West teams might proceed this offseason.
I'll conclude with a look at his plans for the Arizona Cardinals, who hold the No. 5 overall choice.
5. Arizona Cardinals: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU
Kiper's give: This is a spot where I'll stamp a big "TRADE POSSIBILITY" tag on my notes as the picks start to come off the board. But if the Cardinals don't make a move for a pick that could turn into Kevin Kolb or some other veteran quarterback, Peterson is the guy they should take. He's the best overall talent in the draft.
Sando's take: Kiper had Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert landing with the Cardinals in his previous mock. Before that, it was Texas A&M pass-rusher Von Miller. All these projections make sense on various levels. Gabbert would fill an obvious need at quarterback. Miller would fill an obvious need for a pass-rusher. Peterson would qualify as a value selection -- arguably the best overall player in the draft, albeit at a position of less value than the others. I have a hard time envisioning the Cardinals taking a chance this early on a quarterback they had serious questions about. I have a harder time envisioning them going into the 2011 season with John Skelton and Max Hall as their top two quarterbacks. Unfortunately for Arizona, the lockout prevented it from exploring other options before the draft. What do the Cardinals think about Gabbert? That's the No. 1 question in this scenario. Need and positional value do come into play.