When the Dallas Cowboys entered the 2020 NFL Draft they had several holes to fill on their roster. Two positions, in particular, cornerback and slot receiver, were at the top of the list with the losses of Byron Jones and Randall Cobb. However, the Cowboys hit two home runs with the selections of CeeDee Lamb and Trevon Diggs in the first two rounds. Expectations immediately shot through the roof and they're both making great strides in their first NFL training camp.
The Cowboys passing attack was extremely productive in 2019 as Dak Prescott nearly set a franchise record with 4,902 yards and both Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup each went over 1,100 yards. The aforementioned Cobb produced 828 yards as the third option and now the Cowboys have an even more dynamic player in the slot with Lamb. His ability to not only play in the slot but also on the outside, much like Cooper, will force defenses to pick their poison when it comes to covering himself, Cooper, and Gallup simultaneously.
— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) August 21, 2020
One of CeeDee Lamb’s 3 TDs in red zone drills today
(Photo: Dallas Cowboys) pic.twitter.com/mguCvVZDOa
— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) August 24, 2020
One advantage that Lamb has is learning from a perennial Pro Bowl receiver like Cooper, who has been more than willing to share his knowledge with the rookie sensation.
“I'm an open book,” Cooper said. “I'm going to give him everything that I have, all the knowledge that I have …and hope that he runs with it.”
The play of the day in today’s Cowboys practice: Dak Prescott hitting CeeDee Lamb for a leaping grab in the back left corner of the end zone on a well-defended play by Daryl Worley. Ref called Lamb out but we’re gonna need to see a replay. Looked like he got both feet down
— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) August 25, 2020
Prescott is already pleased with what he's seeing from the former Oklahoma Sooner which he expressed earlier this week on the team's website.
“Very, very gifted,” Prescott said. “Great hands, has a great feel for the game. I think that's probably the most impressive thing, to be a young rookie playing in the slot and just have a feel for the game and know where to be. I think that's going to go a long way and serve him really well in this league.”
Lamb's exceptional route running, ability to make plays in the open field, and versatility have him set up for a huge rookie campaign.
Diggs has the prototypical size at 6'1 205 pounds. His background playing the wide receiver position allows him to anticipate routes better than a traditional corner. He also has versatility because he can thrive in man coverage or zone coverage.
Cowboys rookie CB Trevon Diggs intercepting a pass today in team drills
(Photo: Dallas Cowboys) pic.twitter.com/w4dvHTVoXz
— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) August 23, 2020
— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) August 23, 2020
In the video above, Diggs shows his exceptional coverage skills. He does a great job of being physical at the top of the route and forcing Noah Brown to the sidelines. He goes stride for stride with him downfield after getting his head around to make a play on the ball. Textbook technique there by Diggs.
Even though he's projected by most to be one of the starting cornerbacks when the Cowboys open the season vs the Los Angeles Rams he has some stiff competition. Veteran Chido Awuzie is looking to bounce back from a tough 2019 and Daryl Worley, who was acquired during free agency, will also be in the mix for snaps.
Trevon Diggs is hitting his stride in this 2nd week of camp.
The rookie was batting down everything today. Had a PBU on Michael Gallup and broke up a would-be TD to Noah Brown. He made a great play to poke a ball away from Cole Hikutini, but he got there just too soon for a flag
— David Helman (@davidhelman_) August 25, 2020
They may be rookies but Lamb and Diggs are already making an impact and both look primed to perform well on the big stage when the games count in September.