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Cardinals to make Mr. Irrelevant with help of relevant Chandler Harnish

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Quarterback Chandler Harnish knows what it's like to be picked last.

He was the final selection of the 2012 NFL draft, earning the title of Mr. Irrelevant. While he may never play a down for the Arizona Cardinals this season, he'll at least have one handoff on his record.

Harnish posted on Twitter that he'll be announcing this year's Mr. Irrelevant, who will be picked 256th by the Cardinals in Saturday's seventh round.

Arizona was awarded the final pick in the draft in March as compensation for losing free agents after the 2013 season. Under NFL rules, the Cardinals can't trade it so they're stuck with Mr. Irrelevant.

In July, the lucky draft pick will spend a week in Newport Beach, California, for Irrelevant Week. The tradition began 40 years ago by wide receiver Paul Salata. From July 7-12, whoever Arizona picks with at 256th will have six days of events, including a banquet July 10 during which he'll receive the Lowsman Trophy; a visit to Disneyland and Angel Stadium; and the Newport Beach Community Field Day.

With five picks before general manager Steve Keim selects this year's Mr. Irrelevant on Saturday, it's too early for him to figure out his approach to No. 256. But he respects the tradition.

"If you can tell me who's going to be on the board, I'll tell you but not sure," Keim said Friday. "Again, I think we have enough players that I think will get us through the draft as it always has, but it certainly does bring a different level of significance because it's pretty cool how the NFL has a parade now and they make a big deal out of it."

Of the past six Mr. Irrelevants, four are currently on NFL rosters. Defensive back Lonnie Ballantine (2014) plays for the Texans, tight end Justice Cunningham (2013) plays for the Rams, Harnish (2012) plays for the Cardinals and kicker Ryan Succop (2009) plays for the Titans.

Just because a player is the last one taken in a draft doesn't mean his career is bound for failure.

Succop set the Kansas City Chiefs' rookie record with 25 field goals in 2009. Safety Mike Green, who was drafted last in 2000 by Chicago, started 48 games for three teams in eight seasons. Fullback Jim Finn, who was picked last by the Bears started 45 games in six seasons. Linebacker Marty Moore, who was made the 1994 Mr. Irrelevant by New England, became the first Mr. Irrelevant to play in a Super Bowl.

The first Mr. Irrelevant, wide receiver Kelvin Kirk, who was picked last by Pittsburgh in 1976, played seven years in the CFL.