LOCALS IN THE NFL

How Former Utah DT Leki Fotu Will Fit In With Arizona Cardinals

May 13, 2020, 2:37 PM
Leki Fotu - NFL Combine...
Utah defensive lineman Leki Fotu answers questions from the media during the NFL Scouting Combine on February 27, 2020 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, IN. (Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Former Utah defensive tackle Leki Fotu has a chance to contribute as a rookie for the Arizona Cardinals.

Fotu was taken by the Cardinals in the fourth round with the 114th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Cardinals play a 3-4 defensive scheme with one defensive tackle. According to ourlads.com, Fotu is the backup defensive tackle behind Jordan Phillips.

He will wear No. 95 for the Cardinals.

Other Defensive Tackles On Roster

Jordan Phillips signed with Arizona as a free agent after spending the last two seasons with the Buffalo Bills. He has two years remaining with the possibility of a third season as an option on his contract.

Miles Brown is projected to be the third string defensive tackle behind Fotu. Brown is entering the final season of his rookie contract.

The Cardinals took another defensive tackle after Fotu in the NFL Draft. They selected former LSU standout Rashard Lawrence in the fourth round, 131st overall. Ourlads.com has Lawrence listed as a defensive end.

Contract Details

Fotu has not signed a contract with the Cardinals yet. That will happen in the coming weeks. According to Spotrac.com, Fotu is projected to make $4,068,470 over the course of his rookie contract. His signing bonus is projected to be worth $773,470 and using an estimated $803,368 of the Cardinals’ cap.

The former Ute can negotiate certain portions of his contract but some of it is set in stone because of the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement.

Prediction

In five short years of playing the game of football, Fotu has shown that he has serious potential to play the game at a high level. His length and size that goes with his unique quickness for someone that is 6’5, 330 lbs., Fotu can be an immediate contributor for the Cardinals.

Former Denver Broncos head coach and current Cardinals defensive coordinator Vance Joseph has mentioned that he likes the rugby film from Fotu and think he can be a guy that provides length and speed at the defensive tackle spot. I don’t think Fotu will be the starting defensive tackle as a rookie for Arizona but he will get plenty of reps and will be a starter within 3 seasons.

Here is Leki Fotu’s interview with KSL Sports’ Crimson Corner podcast.

Trevor Allen is a Utah Utes Insider for KSLSports.com and host of the Crimson Corner podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @TrevorASportsYou can download and listen to the podcast, here.

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