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Could CB Trevon Diggs Define Cowboys Season?

Conversations about the Dallas Cowboys rookie draft class have revolved around first-round pick CeeDee Lamb. The wide receiver is set to become an instant starter in a promising Cowboys offense after a remarkable career in Oklahoma. But it might be Cornerback Trevon Diggs who makes the difference for the team in 2020.

We know the Cowboys are good on offense. They have one of the best wide receiver groups in the NFL, a great offensive line, a top-tier running back, and a talented quarterback. The offense is not the concern as the team tries to make a Super Bowl run this year.

However, the same cannot be said about the Cowboys’ defense.

Even with the recent signing of DE Everson Griffen, the Cowboys don’t have a top defense because of their secondary. After letting CB Byron Jones walk in free agency, the teams’ defensive backs offer plenty of questions but few answers.

Dallas has an average safety position with Xavier Woods and a declining Ha Ha Clinton-Dix as starters. While Darian Thompson and Donovan Wilson seem like your usual promising prospects, the team has no clear answer. Months ago, we were even talking about Chidobe Awuzie potentially switching positions to upgrade the safety unit.

Which brings us to the cornerback position and Trevon Diggs… In 2017, Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis seemed like two corners that were going to stick around for the long run. Fast forward to their contract years, and we don’t really know how good they are.

They’ve had their moments, no doubt, but they’ve also been mediocre at times. It’s hard to know if their inconsistency is due to a lack of quality coaching or the players themselves, but it’s fair to be concerned about their weaknesses.

Anthony Brown has had decent performances after an impressive rookie campaign in 2016 but he hasn’t shined as much when lined up on the outside.

Last year, these might not have been the biggest of issues thanks to Byron Jones, who essentially erased one side of the field with excellent coverage. But he’s now a Miami Dolphin and the Cowboys need to forget about him.

Enter second-round pick, Trevon Diggs. The prospect out of Alabama was teased by many as a first-round talent before dropping into the second, but he’s good. Diggs has the size to play on the outside although he did play as a nickel cornerback in college. However, his press skills should translate well to the pros.

Diggs reportedly rotated with Anthony Brown as the team’s right cornerback, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we hear about him all over the defensive backfield in the upcoming practices.

I think Diggs is promising enough for us to know he’ll be good in the league. The main question right now might instead be: How quickly can he get there. How long will it take him to solidify himself as a starter on Mike Nolan’s defense to upgrade a secondary that desperately needs help?

While the Dallas Cowboys’ front seven defense is loaded with quality starters, the defensive backfield is far from a top unit and might lead to the biggest troubles the team faces in 2020. If there’s one player that can make a big impact, it’s rookie Trevon Diggs.

Tell me what you think about “Could CB Trevon Diggs Define Cowboys Season?” in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!

What do you think?

Mauricio Rodriguez

Written by Mauricio Rodriguez

I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I've been rooting for America's team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I'm in... You'll find me at @MauNFL.

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  1. I think Diggs will be just fine!! Let him get a little more practice in and he’ll take that starting job on the right side!!

    • I agree with your timeline CF, but unless this staff thinks Awuzie is cemented in the left-side (as was with the previous staff), I think Diggs could end up there. One thing I’ve yet to study (or hear about) is how Nolan historically deploys his CB’s. Does he use his CB1 to follow the WR1 all over the field?

      • Idk but I think Awuzie will be the other starter on the left side!! He’s a really good corner, he just couldn’t get his head turned around when the ball was headed his way, that was his only problem!! If you look up the percentage on how many completions and yards he allowed you’ll see that he wasn’t too far off from Byron Jones…. And he is now the best corner on the team, he just needs to learn how to get his head turned around when the ball is headed his way!! But I think he’ll be way better this season cause for one, without Byron on the team he won’t be picked on as much, and with this coaching staff wanting to get more turnovers, they’ll teach him to turn his head around when the ball is headed his way!! He’ll be just fine too!! The only thing I don’t know just like you is if Nolan sends his CB1 to follow the WR1…. That’s something I think we’ll have to wait and see!!

  2. I think the concerns about our secondary are legit. Our safeties are avg and we have no one close to being lockdown/CB1 level. I think Diggs is the only one on roster who has chance to become that, but could take a few yrs to get there. That’s worrisome in this passing league, where most teams have 2-3 quality WRs. How this position group comes along will be very important.

    • Our corners aren’t as bad as a lot of people think!! Chido is a really good corner, he just needs to learn how to get his head turned around when the ball is headed his way, and Diggs will be a star in the NFL!! And our safeties are actually better than most people think too…. Clinton Dix is a turnover machine, and Woods isn’t all that bad either, but I’m hoping to see Donovan Wilson as our strong safety cause we all know he’s a ball hawk!! Having Clinton Dix at free safety and Wilson at strong safety we’ll have plenty of interceptions through the year!! I have faith in that!! Now that the old coaching staff is gone it’ll be the best player on the field, not the coaches favorites on the field!! Plus with our pass rush being as good as they are we shouldn’t need a lock down corner or the best safeties in the NFL!! If our line can get to the QB fast enough our corners and safeties won’t have to worry about keeping up with the receivers long!! And I believe our pass rush is that good now!!

  3. Diggs will play in every game and will be the starter on the right side by the end if the year.

    The sleeper that no one seems to be talking about is Reggie Robinson II out of Tulsa. 6’1″, 205lbs, and runs 4.4. He was a pass breakup and interception machine in college. Smaller school, but I don’t think there’s any significant differences between Robinson and Diggs – Dallas landed TWO studs at CB.

    Awuzie will start on the left side and I hope his new position coach teaches him to look back for the ball. He was as tight a cover guy as B. Jones, but I’ve never once seen him look back for a ball, and every qb and opposing O.C. knew it. With some technique coaching, he could easily lead the team in int’s this year.

    Jordan Lewis is our best slot corner and will win that job over Brown.

    We’re also stronger at Safety than people realize. I’m going out on a limb to predict a shocker at Safety – Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Donavon Wilson will be the starters. No more coaching favorites getting automatic starting jobs – best talent plays.

    Everything about this team will feel different this year because of the massive upgrade at Head Coach. The pink clapper played favorites and never gave uber-talented young guys the chance to play. He ran the same offense, same defense, same players, and called same plays every single week. It was like watching the same game every week for 10 years. McCarthy will play the best talent, not his favorites (or as pinky used to call them – “the Right Kind Of Guys”). McCarthy will coach to win. Garrett didn’t coach at all…

  4. I like our secondary. Obviously they have a lot to prove and even more room to grow, but I’m comfortable with them as they line up right now. It shouldn’t take too long to see how this new staff/scheme affects any of them …

  5. I’m optimistic that this group continues to develop, but every analysis/ thread offered this yr. clearly cites it as the weakest position group on the team. I’m not sure how much better Awuzie/Woods will get already going into their 4th yr. Lewis I like better than the other two. Brown is solid and Diggs while a stud will probably take a little time. Robinson is probably a couple yrs away. (Though I do think he’ll be a special team demon). I also think D Wilson should start at strong safety. This team has sorely lacked playmakers in the secondary, with Dix Wilson and Diggs being the only one’s I see providing that. A secondary best friend is a good pass rush, so I definitely see that being helping out and being a factor.

    • Given the talent at all the individual position groups, it’s no knock to be the weakest links in this team. Yet, the fact that they have 6 interchangeable pieces tells me they are in pretty good shape.

      I’d argue that TE is this team’s current weakness. Beyond an unproven Jarwin (who has flashed), there is zilch. And your belief that Dalton can’t bridge this team would also suggest that QB room the weakest position group on this team.

      You have to look beyond the starters when measure a position group because we all know we will have to endure injuries. The McCoy injury (yet revealed) is a perfect example … he is helped of the field this morning and immediately today’s top-2 DT’s are Woods and Gallimore?

  6. Good post by the way Marcus! Many good points especially regarding Garrett. Ur right every game was like ground hog day.

  7. Not a knock on the secondary just a reality. Just my opinion which is shared by most experts/threads in here that the position group of weakness that jumps out at u is the secondary. Especially with the importance of the position as opposed to say TE… where if say Jarwin has an off yr our various weapons/offensive versatility can offset that. I have no idea where u went with the QB thing. For the record what I ACTUALLY said was I didn’t feel (and still don’t) that Dalton is the long term or short term answer as a STARTER. As a BACK UP he is obviously one of the best in the league. So we have Dak and an excellent back up, why would everyone not think that is perhaps our strongest position group? Agree u have to look beyond the starters to assess a group. The actual importance of the position/group as well as the depth is a factor. Most of our position groups are strong, but u can’t be strong with every group. I hope our secondary does improve/evolve, cuz that helps the team win which makes me happy.

  8. I hope Diggs will be a revelation in the back end of our defense. Teams will test him game after game. He showed great skill in college, so I’m hoping it will translate in the pros. You know guys like Brees, Wentz, & Garappolo, will test his worth every Sunday. This cowboy fan will be rooting for Diggs.
    This will be a big test for McCarthy and his coaches. I’ll support them all.
    I got sick and tired of watching that disgusting worthless imitation of a coach, Garrett. He would stand on the sidelines and spit and clap and slap butts. Every time the camera was on him he would hock Lugees and clap, clap, clap. So glad he is gone!!! Hallelujah. Go cowboys 2020

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