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Speedy Running Back T.J. Logan Added To Fold

Posted Apr 29, 2017

Notes: Cardinals grab offensive tackle Will Holden; Glasser family helps announce draft choice

The Cardinals took North Carolina running back/return man T.J. Logan with the second of two fifth-round picks.

Coach Bruce Arians didn’t think his return man was on the roster when he spoke at the owners meetings last month.

The Cardinals may have found him in the draft.

The Cardinals selected North Carolina running back T.J. Logan with their second selection in the fifth round on Saturday. While David Johnson will gobble up most of the carries, Logan could be a change-of-pace option on offense and make an immediate impact on special teams.

“He’s a guy that we’d been focused on for quite some time,” General Manager Steve Keim said.

The 5-foot-9, 196-pounder ran a 4.37-second 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine, the fastest mark among running backs. He averaged 32.9 yards per kick return and returned two for scores as a senior. Logan didn’t return punts in college and hopes to add it to his repertoire.

“Any way I can help, whether that’s kick return, catching punts, being on kickoff team, it doesn’t matter,” Logan said. “I just want to help contribute.”

Logan had 675 rushing yards, 244 receiving yards and 12 total touchdowns last season with the Tar Heels. While he doesn’t project to be a big part of the offense in 2017, the Cardinals could choose to employ him in certain situations to take advantage of his home run ability.

[READ: A DRAFT OF PASSION, SPEED, BUT NO QB]

“I pride myself on my speed and trying to run by guys,” Logan said. “If I feel like he’s not as fast as me, I’m trying to leave him in the dust.”

TRADE UP NETS A CORNERBACK

The Cardinals were active over the final two days, making three trades. The final one came at the end of the draft when they packaged their two seventh-rounders for the Raiders’ sixth-round pick.

The Cardinals chose Rudy Ford, who played safety for Auburn but will begin his NFL career at outside cornerback. Ford started three seasons for the Tigers and is another player with speed, clocking in at 4.37 seconds in the 40-yard dash at his Pro Day.

Ford said he would have registered a faster time, but he was still recovering from foot surgery.

“I was fresh out of surgery and I still ran a 4.3,” Ford said. “I’m a 4.2 guy all day long.”

The Cardinals believe Ford can add value to the team at safety, nickel cornerback and on special teams. The best-case scenario would be sticking at outside cornerback, since it is a premium defensive position and the Cardinals have a question mark opposite Patrick Peterson.

Keim is confident in the transition because Ford covered slot receivers at Auburn.

“To me, it may even get easier outside,” Keim said. “If you can play inside at this level, with the way you have to use your eyes and that sort of thing from an anticipation standpoint, I just think that the guy has all the necessary skills to potentially do it. Now, obviously it’s up to him.”

CARDINALS ADD A SWING TACKLE

The Cardinals grabbed immediate impact possibilities early in the draft, but seemed to be looking toward the future with their first pick in the fifth round. They selected Will Holden, a 6-foot-7, 311-pound offensive tackle from Vanderbilt.

The Cardinals don’t have an immediate need at the position with D.J. Humphries and Jared Veldheer as the bookends, but Holden could be used as a backup for both spots in 2017 and then push to start down the road. Keim sees similarities between Holden and Veldheer.

“Is he ideally a left tackle? What is ideal – it’s a guy that’s got rare natural knee bend, length and athleticism,”Keim said. “Are either of those guys that? No. But they’re good technicians, and they understand how to get by with whatever limitations they have.”

Holden believes his skill-set is attractive to the Cardinals.

“It’s not every day you get a player like myself, a kid coming out of Vanderbilt who can bend, who is 6-7,” Holden said. “There are a lot of tall guys who can’t bend down and play lower. I think that’s going to translate really well with their organization.”

Holden said he prides himself on being the smartest player because it’s important to understand the intricacies of the play-call before the snap. The Cardinals have Harvard product Cole Toner on the offensive line already, so Holden was asked if he’s still confident he will be the most intelligent.

“I’m not going to test it,” Holden said. “We’re teammates now, so we’ll just agree to disagree on that.”

GLASSER FAMILY JOINS DAVID JOHNSON TO ANNOUNCE FOURTH-ROUND PICK

Johnson was joined by Kristen and Micah Glasser to announce the Cardinals’ fourth-round pick from the Grand Canyon. David Glasser, Kristen’s husband and Micah’s father, was a Phoenix police officer who was killed in the line of duty last May.

He was a passionate Cardinals fan and a season ticket member. After Johnson read the lead-up to the selection, Micah announced the name of Pittsburgh guard Dorian Johnson to a national audience.

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