With the No. 45-overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, the Arizona Cardinals selected linebacker Kevin Minter from LSU. Minter is SB Nation's No. 4 rated middle linebacker in the 2013 draft class and SB Nation's Dan Kadar rates him as the No. 47 overall player in this year's draft.
Minter became the leader of a strong LSU defense in 2012. He totaled 130 tackles, 15 for loss, four sacks, five pass deflections, one interception and one forced fumble. Minter has a great motor and is a vocal leader on the field, something needed out of the middle linebacker position. He is also a smart player who has solid technique with his hands and takes good pursuit angles.
While Minter aces all of the intangibles, his weakness is his athleticism. He doesn't possess the quickness lateral speed of this year's top linebacker prospects. As a result, he is much more effective against the run than in pass coverage.
Daryl Washington is one of the NFL's better inside linebackers, but Minter has the opportunity to start along-side him in the Arizona's 3-4 system. The team is also thin at the position as Washington has an impending four-game suspension in the 2013 season.
Weight: 246 pounds
Hand size: 9.38 inches
Arm length: 32.08 inches
40-yard dash: 4.67 seconds (result from LSU Pro Day)
Vertical jump: 35.5 inches (from Pro Day)
Broad jump: 9'11
Bench press: 25 reps
Minter decided to leave LSU after only one year as a full-time starter. Although it is possible he could have improved his stock with another year of school, he still earned first-team All-SEC honors and was named LSU's most valuable player. He was the Tigers most consistent force on a defense full of high draft picks.