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Cowboys Draft: 3 LBs To Pay Attention To

The enter the 2018 NFL with clear needs to fill at . Starting MIKE backer will enter , starting WILL has been riddled with , and the now third-year is still somewhat of a question mark.

Considering all of the doubts surrounding the Cowboys linebackers, it would be wise to target one during the 2018 . Of course, and Tremaine Edmunds have become fan favorites over the last few months.

Both of these guys are clearly players, however, and may both be gone by the time the Cowboys are on the clock. Dallas will probably need to find their linebacker starting on day two, so I have compiled a short list of some potential targets.

Josey Jewell, Iowa

2018 NFL Draft: Scouting Iowa LB Josey Jewell

Iowa Hawkeye's linebacker has been gaining traction within the draft community as of late. The three-year starter and collegiate captain has been discussed as one of the more pro-ready and consistent linebackers in this draft class.

Jewell earned a grade on my draft board, and fellow writer Sean Martin saw him in a similar light. Jewell possesses impressive instincts, plays with textbook technique, and is a solid run defender/tackler in the box.

His main weakness, however, is his athletic ability. He doesn't move laterally as well as someone like current Cowboys LB Jaylon Smith did in college. Jewell is a player with a solid floor, but not a very high ceiling. Drafting him would give the Cowboys another good piece on their , and a starting SAM backer.

Sean Martin believes he can play at either WILL or MIKE, and we both view him as a potential target for the Cowboys 81st overall.

Leighton Vander Esch, Boise State

Boise State's Vander Esch is a linebacker garnering a lot of hype throughout Draft Twitter. At 6'4″ and 240 pounds, Vander Esch certainly looks the part of an NFL linebacker. His athleticism and ability to move laterally leaves much to be desired, however.

Vander Esch totaled 141 tackles and 3 interceptions during the , breaking onto the scene as a Junior. Vander Esch is a three down linebacker who has been labeled a leader and hard worker by his Boise State teammates and coaches, making him an excellent “RKG” candidate for . He is an instinctual player who reads, reacts, and attacks on a routine basis against the run. He is also consistently impressive in coverage, something the Cowboys could use from their linebackers.

Despite his positives, which there are many, I just can't convince myself to draft Vander Esch as early as he's being talked about. I believe he can be a solid professional linebacker, and fit in as an off ball WILL, but if I were running the Cowboys I wouldn't make that pick until the third round.

And the way things look, Vander Esch will be long gone by the 81st overall pick. Maybe Dallas will see things differently, and make the move in round two.

Rashaan Evans, Alabama

My favorite of these three linebackers, Alabama's is an off ball/ hybrid who was all over the field for Alabama.

At ‘Bama, Evans had six and 10 hits, ranking 16th in pass rushing productivity (Pro ) among all qualifying draft-eligible inside linebackers. Still, I believe his best plays came from when lined up as a traditional off ball linebacker.

In Dallas, Evans could be used as a WILL backer who also rushes as a in passing situations. The 6'3″ 234 pound linebacker is exactly the type of player that NFL defenses are moving towards, and he would be a welcomed addition to this young Cowboys defense.

I believe Rashaan Evans is a top-30 type of player, making it tough to envision being able to draft him 50th overall. If completely wiped out, Evans could be a candidate at 19, though I wouldn't hold my breath. Evans is ILB3 on my draft board, and earned the highest grade of these three linebackers.

Kevin Brady
Kevin Bradyhttps://kevinrobertbrady.wordpress.com
Die-hard Cowboys fan from the Northeast, so you know I am here to defend the 'boys whenever necessary. Began writing for a WordPress Cowboys Blog, and have been with ITS since 2016.

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Ervinlang318

Yes I thought that said 3 Pounds (LB’s) lol

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