Arizona Wildcats’ DT Earl Mitchell to Workout for Cardinals


The National Football Post reports that the Cardinals will workout defensive tackle Earl Mitchell from the Arizona Wildcats. Mitchell is also scheduled to workout for the Eagles.

Mitchell played his first two seasons at Arizona as a 6’2”, 250 lb. tight end and fullback, but the staff asked him to make the move to defensive tackle after the team switched to the spread offense in 2008. Mitchell, therefore, put on an extra 45 lbs. and notched 88 tackles, 12.5 tackles for a loss, seven sacks, and one forced fumble in just two full seasons at DT. In 2009, Mitchell was selected Second Team All-Pac 10 Conference. reports that “Mitchell turned in a strong performance during the week of practice at the East-West Shrine Game, which helped Mitchell develop momentum heading into the final months before the draft. NFL scouts love Mitchell’s athleticism and work ethic, but may struggle to find a spot for him at his size. Some even feel his future position in the NFL might lie back on the offensive side of the ball as a fullback.”

Here’s the full Scouting Report:

Pass rush: At least moderate initial quickness and can get skinny to slide through the gap and disrupt the play immediately. Quick, active hands to battle inside. Flashes a good swim and rip move, but needs to use each more often. Relies too much on a marginally effective bull rush. Has a second burst to close when he has a lane, but tires quickly. Struggles to change direction and too often can be eluded for a defensive tackle with his size and relative athleticism.

Run defense: Flashes a quick burst laterally to penetrate. Good balance in tight quarters and feel to handle the trap block. Plays stouter than his frame would indicate due to good use of leverage and leg drive, but is never going to be a true run-stuffer. Hustles laterally in pursuit.

Explosion: Can surprise the guard with his initial burst to slip through the gap. Quick, active hands and good upper body strength to knock the offensive lineman back off the snap.

Strength: Good leg drive to lock out and anchor, though he lacks the bulk to hold up to double-teams. Can push offensive guards into the pocket to create a disruption in the running game. Good strength for the drag-down tackle while still engaged with the blocker.

Tackling: Classic catch and drag-down tackler. Has a burst to close and flashes some pop when given space to gain momentum. Provides good effort laterally, but isn’t able to stalk the ball-carrier, showing only marginal body control.

Intangibles: Caught 13 passes for 174 yards and two touchdowns in 2006-07 as a part-time starting H-back. Missed the 2009 game against Washington due to a freak injury to his eye after it was hit by the corner of a door. Highly respected by fans, teammates and the coaching staff. Voted a 2009 team captain. Struggled with academics early in his career, but was named a winner of the National Academic Momentum Award which is presented by the Scholar-Baller Program in conjunction with the National Consortium for Academics and Sports. High-effort player with some legitimate upside as a relative neophyte at the position.

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