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A DE To Move And a Tackle To Finish

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The Cards will move sixth-round pick Chris Harrington to linebacker.

Chris Harrington could barely contain himself, telling the listeners at the other end of his conference call that he was wearing his Cardinals' hat.

That was automatic for the defensive end from Texas A&M, the Cards' sixth-round

pick Sunday who will be asked to play linebacker in the NFL.

"I heard from Arizona in the fourth or fifth round, and I just waited and waited," Harrington said. "Then they called again three picks before they took me, and so we stayed on the phone, and man, I am pumped."

For the Cardinals' final pick of the draft, the team selected Northern Iowa tackle Brandon Keith.

At 6-foot-5 and 264 pounds, Harrington had just two sacks as a senior. But he said Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt told him the Cards liked Harrington's motor and the way he rushed the passer.

The Cardinals already took two defensive ends earlier in the draft – Calais Campbell and Kenny Iwebema – and Harrington is smaller than both.

"I stood up in college probably 20 percent of the time in a 3-4 package," Harrington said. "I have been working on it. Teams were talking to me about playing that outside linebacker spot so I have been working on dropping and coming off the ball and things like that."

Harrington, a first-team all-Big 12 choice in 2006 and a second-team pick in 2007, has NFL bloodlines. His uncle, Dave Elmendorf, starred as a safety for the Rams in the 1970s.

"I'm just ready to get working," Harrington said.

Keith, 6-5 and 343 pounds, began his college career at Oklahoma before transferring in part because the Oklahoma program got into trouble with the NCAA and Keith said "I didn't want to be part of that."

With good size and long arms, the scouting reports say a solid pro career is potentially there. Whisenhunt said the plan is to put Keith at right tackle.

"My number one strength is my athletic ability," Keith said. "People see 6-5 and 340 pounds and they expect me to be slow.

"My weakness is probably that I am raw. I haven't had a lot of experience."


Contact Darren Urban at askdarren@cardinals.nfl.net. Posted 4/27/08.

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