Earlier this offseason, Steve Keim talked about the second chances he was now willing to give to players after succeeding with Tyrann Mathieu. That was on display with the first round of Thursday’s draft when the Cards grabbed Ole Miss defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche. Nkemdiche has top-five talent in the eyes of a lot of evaluators. But he’s had off-field issues, including when he fell out of a fourth-floor hotel window while under the influence. His statistics didn’t always pile up for a guy whose talent said they should have been better.
But Nkemdiche provides a huge boost to the defensive line. It provides youth for a group that has some aging parts, and guys like Calais Campbell and Frostee Rucker are also going into the last year of their respective contracts. It’s the kind of pick that can make a good team great, if Nkemdiche does what he is supposed to do, and with leaders like Campbell, Rucker, Patrick Peterson and Mathieu in the locker room, the culture is there to keep him on the right path.
Tags: Robert Nkemdiche
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