The NFL Draft is inching closer and closer. And, as it goes, so do the Cowboys.
The Cowboys badly need to hit in this draft, more than any other in recent memory. After a long, tough season the team badly needs to upgrade their offensive line and defensive line. Add to that the transition to the Tampa-2 defense and the Cowboys have more needs than draft picks.
Luckily, this draft is deep in the areas that the Cowboys need. With starting caliber offensive lineman deep, the Cowboys will be able to ensure they grab a game changer at 18 overall.
So without further adu, this is how I see the Cowboys draft working out.
Round 1: Sylvester Williams, DT, UNC
Williams is a dynamic defensive tackle who has speed, size and explosiveness. He is rather raw but his ceiling is limitless. Once a third round prospect Williams tape suggests that he can be as disruptive a force as any on the interior line. With the elite offensive lineman off the board the Cowboys are able to select a guy who can play the 1 and 3 techniques and can be a force for the foreseeable future.
Round 2: (trade down with Cincinatti for 53 and 118 overall) Giovanni Bernard, RB, UNC
Bernard is a dynamic back with excellent all around ability and incredibly shiftiness. The Cowboys don’t have any player’s they’re dying to land so they take the best player on their board. I believe that Bernard can develop into one of the best running backs in the game with his all-around skill set. Considering the Cowboys’ cap situation for the next few years and Murray’s inability to stay healthy, Bernard makes more sense then some would care to admit.
Round 3: Terron Armstead, T, Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Justin Pugh, G, Syracuse
Finally, the Cowboys address their offensive line.
Armstead is an athletic offensive tackle who can be very good in a zone-blocking scheme. He’s big, strong and fast which will help him against some of the elite pass-rushers in the NFC East. This move solidifies the right tackle position that seems to be a big question moving forward.
Pugh is an underrated offensive guard. He has seen his “stock” go on a rollar-coaster but I believe he’s the fourth best guard in the draft. Considering how elite this class is, Pugh projects as an immediate starter who can use his size and strength to keep Tony Romo upright.
Round 4: J.J. Wilcox, S, Georgia Southern
WIlcox is a relative unknown to fans who focus on the bigger picture draft prospects. However, he is just as talented as the upper tier safeties and possibly a better fit for the Cowboys scheme. Wilcox has exceptional speed and range as well as elite cover skills. He isn’t afraid of contact and is a sure tackler. A great find in the fourth.
Round 5: Josh Boyce, WR, TCU
Boyce is a blazing fast receiver who has decent hands. He has a lot to learn in regards of becoming an NFL receiver but he can develop into a good slot guy and excellent return man. In the later rounds you’re just looking for a guy who has one elite attribute, I think Boyce’s speed makes him a weapon for the Cowboys.
Round 6: Michael Williams, TE, Alabama
In Williams the Cowboys get their blocking tigh end. Williams is deceptively atheletic and had good hands, though he isn’t considered a receiving threat. The Cowboys badly need a tight end who can block. While the Cowboys added Hannah last season, Hannah can’t block. Williams is a good find in that I believe he can develop into a solid balanced tight end behind Jason Witten.
The Cowboys actually get a really solid haul here. They don’t get a depth pass-rushing defensive end but they address some very serious needs with great value. If the Cowboys end with this draft, I think Cowboys and fans are very happy with the results.