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NFL Draft

Draft Cowboys: 7 Round Mock



The Cowboys are in first place of NFC East but they are not without weaknesses. This team has no depth at the defensive line and secondary. These positions should be two of the needs for the NFL Draft. Here is the first seven round mock.

1. Ha 'Sean “Ha-Ha” Clinton-Dix, Safety, Alabama

Dallas has shown that safety is still a primary concern in coverage. Last year J.J. Wilcox was drafted in the third round to try and sure up their free safety position. He has been playing well up until his injury. Clinton-Dix coupled with Wilcox can be the answer to help with their corners in coverage for the future.

 2. Zack Martin, Offensive Guard, Notre Dame

There were two guards that could have been taken with this selection. I felt that Martin would be the one available when Dallas steps to the podium to make their pick. Martin slid inside from left tackle so his versatility is a huge plus for the Cowboys. He could even replace Doug Free at right tackle, should the Cowboys not retain him after this season.

3. Kony Ealy, Defensive End, Missouri

Ealy has the prototypical size you want in a defensive end at 6’5” and 275 pounds. Ealy is a great speed rusher and could help with the pass rush, which the Cowboys have struggled with consistently this season. Ealy is a very raw player and could be the reason he falls to the Cowboys in the third round. With the injuries to Anthony Spencer and DeMarcus Ware, depth has been an issue on the defensive line. Not to mention Spencer has probably played his last snap for the Dallas Cowboys.

4. Danny Shelton, Defensive Tackle, Washington

Shelton is a strong tackle who should eat up blocks playing at the 1-tech position. He has shown strength to back the center up and using that strength to shed the blocker. Jay Ratliff is no longer on this team and Jason Hatcher is in a contract year. He has been the most consistent player on the line but with his age this team might have second thoughts on anything long-term as far as a new contract.

 5. Eric Ward, Wide Receiver, Texas Tech

Ward had an opportunity to come out of school last year but decided against it with Kliff Kingsbury coming to take over the program. Many felt that it was the right decision to increase his draft stock. Ward has had a sub-par year by his standards but still a solid number three receiver behind fellow Big 12 receivers Dez Bryant and Terrance Williams.

 7. Jimmy Garoppolo, Quarterback, Eastern Illinois

Garoppolo is the best quarterback to come out of Eastern Illinois since well Tony Romo. Dallas will need to begin searching for the eventual replacement of Romo. His contract has an opening to release him with little penalty in 2017. That would give Dallas three seasons for Garoppolo to learn from him as his heir apparent.

 7. Trey Millard, Fullback, Oklahoma

Millard played his last game of the season against Texas Tech in Norman three weeks ago but suffered a season ending injury tearing his ACL and another knee ligament. He should be available in the late rounds of this draft. Millard would give Dallas something they haven’t had since Daryll “Moose” Johnston retired, a legitimate full back to help with this lackluster running game. He is also a huge threat in the passing game.



Patrick Conn is the founder and creator of Valley Ranch Outsiders. His work has been seen on, FanSided, Yahoo and Blue Star Times. He is an avid Cowboys fan and NFL Draft analyst. He currently hosts a podcast about the Dallas Cowboys.

NFL Draft

Report: Boise State LB Leighton Vander Esch Visiting Cowboys

Kevin Brady



2018 NFL Combine: 3 LBs Who Impressed
Photo by David Becker/Getty Images

As the 2018 NFL Draft draws closer, teams are beginning to hold their official visits with prospects of their own choosing. The Cowboys have already met with a few different prospects thus far, and they've reportedly added a linebacker to that list this week.

Multiple reports are saying the Cowboys will meet with Boise State linebacker Leighton Vander Esch this week, adding him to the list of 30 potential visits.

Marcus Mosher on Twitter

BoiseState LB Leighton Vander Esch will be a pre-draft visitor for the #Cowboys. Add him to your list of 30, per Tony Pauline.

Vander Esch is a bit of a controversial prospect in the draft world. As I've stated before, he tested like a freak athletically, and his combine profile alone would put him in the discussion on day one. The problems I have with Vander Esch have nothing to do with his athleticism, however, and everything to do with his actual football-playing ability.

On film, I see a player who struggles to get off blocks and will have trouble finding a home with the Cowboys. Still, I wouldn't mind the Cowboys drafting Vander Esch - that pick cannot come in the first round though.

Vander Esch is a long, rangy, and athletic linebacker who is at his best playing laterally and tracking down plays. As a blitzer, Vander Esch has some rather clear issues. He often runs directly into blocks and is unable to shed at the point of attack. I also don't think he is as instinctual a player as some of the other linebackers in this class, such as BYU's Fred Warner or Alabama's Rashaan Evans.

The way things are looking, however, Vander Esch is going to be a first round pick. And if not, he'll almost certainly be a top 50 pick. I wouldn't be very comfortable taking him at 19, and I'd have to think twice before even taking him at 50 for that matter.

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NFL Draft

2018 NFL Draft: Dallas Cowboys Meeting with Texas Safety DeShon Elliott

Sean Martin



2018 NFL Draft: Dallas Cowboys Meeting with Texas Safety DeShon Elliott
(Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire)

With more pressing needs on offense at guard and wide receiver, and defensively at DE or LB, the Cowboys' concerning lack of proven ability at safety has taken a backseat in this offseason's roster build. With the expectation that new Passing Game Coordinator Kris Richard will elevate the play of the entire Cowboys' secondary, the team is doing their due diligence on safeties available in the 2018 NFL Draft - starting with Texas' DeShon Elliott.

Josh Norris on Twitter

It appears Texas S DeShon Elliott is visiting the #Cowboys today

With 63 tackles and six interceptions in his final season at Texas, Elliott took full advantage of being a starter in the Big 12 for the first time in his career, flying onto the NFL Draft scene.

Elliott is a well-balanced, average athlete with the upside to be targeted late in April's draft and make a difference.

If they had to play a game tomorrow, the Cowboys would be rolling with Jeff Heath, Xavier Woods, and Kavon Frazier at safety.

Finding an expanded role this season for Frazier should be a priority in Dallas, as should supplementing Heath and Woods with additional talent. DeShon Elliott would fit this group well, along with the Cowboys' scheme, given his range and disruptive ability.

Should Jourdan Lewis, Chidobe Awuzie, Anthony Brown, and now Byron Jones help the Cowboys reach their full potential at CB, the Cowboys safeties will not be tested in single coverage up the field often. This is an area that Elliott was exploited in at Texas plenty of times, performing better as a true free safety or second-level player.

Continuing to add young talent at the right price is key to the Cowboys' ongoing rebuild on defense, now visiting with a local safety prospect that should be available to them in the later rounds. Texas' DeShon Elliott is officially a name to consider come draft week in Dallas.

Tell us what you think about "2018 NFL Draft: Dallas Cowboys Meeting with Texas Safety DeShon Elliott" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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NFL Draft

Cowboys Draft: PSU WR DaeSean Hamilton Fits Cowboys’ “Type”

Kevin Brady



Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

Last week, I detailed what the Cowboys tend to look for when drafting a wide receiver. In terms of a combine profile, Dallas clearly has a "type" of wide-out they like to target.

The Cowboys certainly need to upgrade their receiving corps, but with the plethora of other holes to fill, they may not be able to do so until the 3rd or 4th round. Luckily for the Cowboys, there is at least one receiver which both fits their profile and should be available early on day three.

That player is Penn State wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton.

Kevin Brady on Twitter

Working on something for @InsideTheStarDC... here's the height, weight, 40 time, and 3 cone for every WR DAL has taken since 2010.

First, let's re-examine what the Cowboys like to look for. As you can see from the above graphic, the Cowboys draft targets all seem to fit a similar profile. If we treat Dez Bryant as their "ideal" draft pick, the trends become even clearer. Dallas wants to find a wide-out who is about 6'1" 205 pounds, runs nearly a 4.5 40 yard dash, and about a 6.9 three come time.

DeaSean Hamilton, coincidentally, is 6'1" 203 pounds, ran a 4.47 40 yard dash at the Penn State pro day, and ran a 6.84 three cone at the combine. Penn State's all time receptions leader stole the show at the 2018 Senior Bowl, putting all of "Draft Twitter" on notice to his talent.

An efficient and smooth route runner, Hamilton looks natural coming in and out of breaks, creating separation with his precise routes. The Cowboys don't have many receivers on their roster who can win with their route running, and adding a player like Hamilton would greatly help third year quarterback Dak Prescott moving forward.

With the ability to play in the slot, as well as potentially being a Z receiver for the Cowboys and a replacement for Terrance Williams, Hamilton would be an excellent draft target in the third or fourth round. And, keeping in mind how nicely he fits their typical draft profile, I'd expect Dallas to target Hamilton during the 2018 NFL Draft.

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