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NFL Draft

Cowboys 7-Round Mock Draft: Dallas Double Dips At DE

Brian Martin

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2017 Cowboys Draft: Dallas Gets Much-Needed Defensive Help

Yesterday I dropped my first 2017 first-round mock draft for all 32 teams. Things didn’t fall exactly the way I would’ve liked in order for the Dallas Cowboys to come away with a “war daddy” defensive end, but they were able to upgrade the defense with their first-round selection. Today, I thought I would continue with of the rest the Cowboys draft picks through all seven rounds.

I personally think the Dallas Cowboys will go heavy on defense, so that’s what I decided to do in this mock draft as well. Continue reading below to see how I think things could shake out for the Cowboys after the completion of the 2017 NFL Draft.

R1/28 – DAL: Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State

Has prototypical size for an NFL CB and would likely step and as a day one starter on the outside for the Cowboys. He is scheme diverse, but needs to become more physical in run support.

R2/28 – DAL: Josh Jones, S, NC State

Jones started two years as a strong safety before moving to free safety his final year at NC State. He has the prototypical size teams look for in their safeties and would be a day one starter next to Byron Jones on the back end of the Cowboys defense.

R3/28 – DAL: Dawuane Smoot, DE, Illinois

Talented DE who already has experience in Rod Marinelli’s 4-3 defensive scheme after playing under Lovie Smith at Illinois. Played better in 2015, but dropped weight in 2016, which seemed to affect his play. Would likely compete with Charles Tapper to start opposite DeMarcus Lawrence as a rookie.

R4/26 – DAL: Noah Brown, WR, Ohio State

Big/physical WR that fits the parameters the Cowboys look for in their outside wide receivers. Wasn’t utilized much at Ohio State and is still learning the position, but has the skill set to develop into a #1 WR.

R6/27 – DAL: Joe Mathis, DE, Washington

Talented pass rusher that has some off the field concerns that need to be addressed. Also has struggled with injuries. Injury prone? Cowboys have targeted Chris Peterson coached players in the past: Orlando Scandrick, Tyrone Crawford, and DeMarcus Lawrence.

R7/10 – DAL: T.J. Logan, RB, North Carolina

Shifty 3rd down/change of pace back that will take over Lance Dunbar’s role. Can contribute on special teams as a return specialist as well. Is a natural pass catcher, but needs to work on ball security.

R7/28 – DAL: Blair Brown, LB, Ohio

A little bit undersized, but is a good sideline to sideline LB that shows good instincts to quickly diagnose and attack. Would provide depth to the LB position and contribute on special teams as a rookie. Has potential to become a starter.

The Dallas Cowboys shore their secondary with their first two draft picks by selecting Gareon Conley and Josh Jones. Both defensive backs are immediate upgrades over what the Cowboys lost in free agency and will be fixtures in the secondary for years to come.

Dawuane Smoot and Joe Mathis have both proven that they are capable of getting after the QB in college, but the NFL is a different beast. Expect defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli to get the best out of them. Smoot and Mathis will compete with second-year DE Charles Tapper to start opposite DeMarcus Lawrence in 2017.

Noah Brown could make Brice Butler expendable, but he probably still needs a year to develop his skill set more before becoming a consistent contributor. He has the size, speed, and skill set to develop into a #1 WR for the Cowboys and could be used as a red zone target as a rookie.

T.J. Logan and Blair Brown are both valuable depth players that will make their living on special teams as rookies. Both players are talented enough to see snaps at RB and LB as rookies and could carve out a nice role with the Cowboys for years to come.

How do you feel about these draft picks for the Dallas Cowboys?

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Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

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21 Comments
  • Corey

    This actually doesn’t look to bad if it all falls this way

    • Brian Martin

      I would mind if this was the way things turned out.

  • Assassin

    Havent seen too much on most of these guys except for Smoot. Like him a lot in 3rd.

    Unless we pick up at TE in FA or the Cowboys know more about Rico than the public does, we may need to go TE at some point.

    • Brian Martin

      I agree that TE may need to be addressed at some point in the draft.

  • Assassin

    Also, wouldnt mind taking a flyer on Chip Kelly, the Mississippi QB if he’s around in the 7th. One of those too much talent to ignore, but a head case/medical issue folks.

    • Brian Martin

      I think you meant Chad Kelly, not Chip Kelly. I agree, but you might be able to pick him up as an undrafted free agent. That would be the ideal scenario.

      • Assassin

        I suspect he will be someone’s late round pick. No sooner than the 5th though. Medical issues are a concern. Plus he’s a bit of a headcase. If I were an NFL GM, I would ask his teammates about playing with him, if they would follow him and if they would want to be on another team with him. QB has to be a leader.

        The “good” thing about his headcase stuff is that they are all aggression issues. I would take that over drugs anyday

        All the talent in the world. Decent TD to INT numbers. Jim Kelly’s nephew. Good bloodlines

        • Brian Martin

          The only reason I said that the Cowboys might prefer to take them as an undrafted free agent is because I think they may be starting to move on from taking these so-called “troubled” players. It all depends on where he falls on their draft board. They may have somebody still there in the late part of the draft they like more.

          • Assassin

            I know where you’re going. But I also remember when we moved away from any ‘head cases’ back in the White House days. Doomed us to some really mediocre to bad years. I think there has to be a balance. Just think if we had taken Honey Badger instead of taking him off our boards as a headcase

          • Brian Martin

            I’m not disagreeing with you. I just think it’s going to depend on how their board sets up.

  • Assassin

    Ran a Fanspeak Mock, here are mine;

    28: R1P28 DL CARL LAWSON AUBURN
    60: R2P28 CB CHIDOBE AWUZIE COLORADO
    92: R3P28 LB T.J. WATT WISCONSIN
    133: R4P26 S MARCUS MAYE FLORIDA
    211: R6P27 TE PHAROH BROWN OREGON
    228: R7P10 WR RICKY SEALS-JONES TEXAS A&M
    246: R7P28 OT CLINT VAN HORN MARSHALL

    • Brian Martin

      I could live with that

    • Terry

      TJ watt won’t last that long

      • Assassin

        Probably not. But you take what’s given to you. This was from the Fanspeak Mock. Pretty cool little free mock tool. I like it as I start to understand who players are that arent the bigger names.

    • Assassin

      I got one right!

  • dallas1966

    I would shout for joy, if this was the way the draft fell for the Cowboys.

    The only exception, I would select Marcus Williams, Safety, Utah, over Jones.

    It’s time to end the 21 years, in the wilderness.

    In McClay, I trust!!

    • Brian Martin

      I wouldn’t mind either of those selections. I’m a little higher on Jones because of his versatility to play SS or FS

  • Harold Keith Wiseman

    In the draft ,I would draft Obi in the1st,DE,,DT in the 2nd,cb,in the 3rd/4th,6th /7th DL

    • Brian Martin

      There are a few safeties I like better, but I could live with that

  • Geezy_Gaming

    Im really against not going DE in the 1st round. But this mock is fantastic and if it went this way I will be very happy.

    • Brian Martin

      I think it’s going to be tough to find a DE in the first round at 28.

NFL Draft

Luxury or Need for Cowboys to Draft Another 1st-Round OL?

Brian Martin

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Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, Travis Frederick, offensive line

Due to growing concerns about Tyron Smith‘s availability and future health, due to reoccurring back injuries, there seems to be a growing consensus among Dallas Cowboys fans that there’s a need to draft an offensive lineman with the first-round pick. But, is it actually a need, or would it be more of a luxury?

There is legitimate concern about Tyron Smith and his future health.

Back injuries have a way of flaring up at the most inopportune times. It’s also not an injury that’s going away anytime soon, if ever. This is the unknown the Cowboys are faced with heading into the off-season, and it could end up having a major impact on the direction they go in the 2018 NFL Draft.

There seems to be a growing consensus around Cowboys Nation that the Dallas Cowboys should seriously consider selecting the best available offensive tackle with the 19th overall pick.

There are probably two reasons for this:

  1. Tyron Smith’s health concerns, and
  2. the need to upgrade the swing tackle position after watching Byron Bell and Chaz Green play in 2017.

But, the question remains: is drafting yet another offensive lineman in the first-round a luxury or need for the Dallas Cowboys?

Personally, I can see both sides of this argument. So, let’s break it down a little and examine each.

Luxury

Zack Martin

Dallas Cowboys RG Zack Martin

The Dallas Cowboys have already invested an enormous amount of resources to build arguably the best offensive line in the NFL.

They’ve spent three first-round draft picks to acquire Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick, and Zack Martin, two of which have already received long-term extensions with Martin waiting in the wings.

That’s a lot of money devoted to one position, which ultimately means the Cowboys have to go cheaper in other areas in order to fit under the salary cap. This is the money that would be used in free agency to acquire some of those higher-priced free agents fans are always hankering for.

It also can be used to re-sign some of the Cowboys players at other positions, such as DeMarcus Lawrence.

But, it’s not only the money that makes drafting a first-round OL a luxury.

Four out of five of the Cowboys OL are already pretty much set in stone. The left guard position is really the only unoccupied position right now, but that could be filled rather easily. This, of course, is assuming Tyron Smith stays healthy, but regardless, he is the starting left tackle when the 2018 season begins.

Need

Byron Bell

Dallas Cowboys OL Byron Bell

There’s no reason to believe Tyron Smith will be able to play an entire 16-game season going forward. The last two seasons he has had to sit out several games due to injuries, and unfortunately his back issues aren’t going away anytime soon.

To make matters worse, Dallas doesn’t have an adequate backup, which was proven on more than one occasion in 2017. Hence the need.

With the exception of the quarterback, the left tackle position is arguably the most important on offense. They protect the QB’s blindside and are largely responsible for keeping him healthy and upright.

There’s a reason they are drafted so highly and paid so handsomely: they are that important to a team’s success.

There was also a reason the Dallas Cowboys offense started to sputter once Tyron Smith started missing time. Opposing defenses no longer respected the Cowboys LT, and started putting their best pass rusher on that side to get after Dak Prescott.

Prescott ended up having happy feet and it had a ripple effect throughout the entire offense, and not in a good way.

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Quite honestly, I think it would be a luxury to draft any kind of offensive lineman with the Cowboys’ first-round selection, but I wouldn’t be completely surprised if that’s the direction they went. There are positives and negatives to both sides of the argument.

But, if they stick to the draft board and an OL is their highest rated player there, I say go for it.

The only thing we can do is have faith that the Dallas Cowboys know more about Tyron Smith’s health and his availability to play then we do as fans. If they decide to draft an offensive lineman early, I think we should all take that as an indication that they are worried about Smith, at least a little bit.

Luxury or Need: Do the Cowboys draft a first-round OL?

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NFL Draft

The Dallas Cowboys Will Have More Than Enough Trade Ammunition

Mauricio Rodriguez

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The Dallas Cowboys Will Have More Than Enough Trade Ammunition
James D. Smith / Dallas Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys football team has a lot of needs on both sides of the ball. Sure, that’s pretty sad to say as a die-hard Cowboys fan, but it should make for a very interesting offseason. This front office needs to find a way to add talent in the draft, and probably in free agency as well, all while finding ways to keep Anthony Hitchens, DeMarcus Lawrence and David Irving, and extending Zack Martin.

Maybe they’re not able to achieve everything, but as long as they don’t lose all of these guys, they should be fine. We may even see a surprising release or trade. It sure would be interesting to see this team release Dez Bryant, for example.

Last year, Dallas lost Barry Church, Morris Claiborne, Brandon Carr and Ronald Leary… among others. But what do these four guys have in common? They all resulted in compensatory picks for the Dallas Cowboys’ 2018 NFL Draft.

Cowboys Nation on Twitter

Including the expected Compensatory Picks that the Cowboys will receive for their Free Agents that signed with other teams in 2017, the Cowboys should have the following picks in the 2018 Draft:

The Cowboys got two additional fourths and two fifths. After trading up to get Xavier Woods in 2017, Dallas had no original fifth rounders for this year’s draft.

This is a front office that avoids making “big splashes” in free agency and in the draft lately, but I wonder if they’ll at least explore trading possibilities this time.

With three fourth-round picks and two fifths, they should have more than enough ammunition.

Will McClay Discusses 2016 Cowboys Draft Class, Looks Ahead to 2017

Dallas Cowboys VP Stephen Jones, Will McClay

This team has done a nice job in the last few drafts, and with Will McClay staying for at least one more year, they might as well try to get everything they can out of their draft picks. After all, Dak Prescott himself was a fourth-round compensatory pick.

Even still, I would like to see this team do something out of the ordinary.

Whether it’s trading up to get a well-fitting player who might otherwise go before their pick, or if it’s to get another team’s player, it would be interesting to see this front office pull the trigger on an interesting trade.

Sometimes it’s surprising what NFL teams can get with late round picks.

The Buffalo Bills traded away Marcell Dareus for only a sixth-round pick less than a year ago. I mean, how would you have felt if Dallas had gotten Dareus for just a sixth rounder? I would’ve been completely fine with it, to be honest.

The Cowboys have enough ammunition to consider pulling a trade-off in free agency or the NFL Draft.

We may not like the coaching, but in the past few years, this front office has done a good job when it comes to team-building.

We were all frightened when we saw the defensive players that were leaving in the secondary, and a season later, the young defensive backs are one of the reasons why we’re very optimistic about this team’s future.

So if they decide to keep their picks to themselves, I’d say it’ll be worth it, too.

After a sad season, at least we have an intriguing offseason ahead of us to keep us entertained.

Tell me what you think about “The Dallas Cowboys Will Have More Than Enough Trade Ammunition” in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 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!

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NFL Draft

Cowboys Draft Target: Louisiana State WR D.J. Chark

Brian Martin

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Cowboys Draft Target: LSU WR D.J. Chark
AP Photo/John Raoux

It’s a little bit hard to believe, but draft season is already upon us. The Dallas Cowboys seem to have several needs to fill through the draft, and right now there is no clear-cut answer as to which position they should target in the first round. But, one of their top needs could be an upgrade at wide receiver.

There’s no way of knowing when the Cowboys will draft a receiver, or if they view it as a position of need. But regardless, so far my film study shows this 2018 WR draft class shapes up to be a pretty solid one.

The majority of Cowboys Nation is already familiar with the WRs the Cowboys could possibly draft in the first round, such as Calvin Ridley or Courtland Sutton. So, I’ve been looking at some of the more under the radar WRs and one of them particularly caught my eye for Dallas .

Louisiana State WR D.J. Chark

I’m honestly a little surprised D.J. Chark isn’t talked about more when referring to some of the top wide receivers in the 2018 draft class, but I think that will change once we get further into the process.

D.J. Chark

LSU WR D.J. Chark

I’m pretty sure he’s still under the radar because the 21-year-old senior only caught 40 passes for 874 receiving yards and three touchdowns with the LSU Tigers in 2017.

Those aren’t exactly eye-popping numbers, but he did finish as one of the top receivers in the nation at yards per reception, averaging 21.9 yards.

D.J. Chark (6’3″, 200) possesses an impressive skill set that would really fit in with what the Dallas Cowboys like to do offensively. In fact, some of his strengths as a prospect are currently missing from the offense, which is why I think he makes an intriguing target.

Chark has strong, reliable hands and a large catch radius. He’s a solid route runner, but could stand to improve in this area once he’s in the NFL. He has the speed to take the top off of defenses and also used that speed on jet sweeps and reverses. He also wasn’t afraid to do the dirty work in the blocking game, showing pretty good technique.

Let’s take a look at how and why I believe he would make a good addition to the Cowboys offense.

DJ Chark toetapping TD catch – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

This particular play was from his junior season, but it was one of his more impressive plays during his career at LSU.

What you probably first noticed is his speed to get past the defender. It’s an aspect of the Cowboys’ offense that’s currently missing.

Chark is excellent at tracking the ball through the air, but it was his spatial awareness that made this particular catch so impressive.

LSU’s QB threw the ball where only Chark could catch it, but unfortunately didn’t leave him much room to get his feet down and secure the catch. Chark knew exactly where he was at on the field and was able to do a little toe tapping to get not one, but two feet down for the TD.

Here’s another example from his senior season.

DJ Chark deep threat – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

Again, D.J. Chark’s best quality right now is his speed, which is proven once again on this play.

From the snap of the ball, Chark puts the BYU defensive back in a tough position because of his speed. Even with the cushion the DB gave him, Chark is on top of him before he can react, creating separation on his way to the end zone.

Unfortunately, the QB under throws the ball on this play, or it would have been an easy six points. But, Chark does an excellent job of tracking the ball and securing the catch for a big gain.

So, you can see for yourself how D.J. Chark can stretch the field vertically, but he can also help the Cowboys offense by stretching the field horizontally.

DJ Chark jet sweep – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

Remember the jet sweep? It was an underrated play for the Dallas Cowboys in 2016. It wasn’t that successful, but it prevented the opposing defense from crushing the defensive ends down in the running game, and kept them from pinning their ears back in the passing game.

This is another area where D.J. Chark’s speed comes in handy, and something he did quite well during his time at LSU.

Like Dallas, LSU also has a run-first mentality, which is why they incorporated the jet sweep and the reverse into their offense. These kind of plays may not be very successful, and it wasn’t in this particular clip, but they help set up things in the running game to keep opposing defenses on their heels, instead of in attack mode.

Lastly, I want to show you what Chark can do on special teams as a returner.

DJ Chark punt return – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

The Dallas Cowboys don’t necessarily need a punt returner after adding Ryan Switzer last year, but it never hurts to have another option just in case. D.J. Chark is dangerous with the ball in his hands because of his speed. If he can get into the open field, there’s not much chance of anyone catching him from behind.

It doesn’t really matter if it’s in the passing game or as a punt returner.

Overall, D.J. Chark has all the intangibles to find success with the Dallas Cowboys, and already knows what it feels like to play in a run-first offense.

His straight-line speed is really intriguing, but he has some quick-twitch ability to his game as well.

He has immense upside, but he’s nowhere near a polished prospect. Chark was somewhat inconsistent at LSU, but that has a lot to do with the quarterback play during his career. He also needs to become a better route runner at the next level, but that should come with better coaching.

What do you think of D.J. Chark’s as a Dallas Cowboys draft prospect?

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