The first round of the 2013 NFL draft has concluded and the Cowboys are moving forward with a new center in Travis Frederick. The selection didn’t make #CowboysNation too thrilled, but lets see what some others think.
Rob Rang, CBS Sports:
“31. Dallas Cowboys (San Francisco 49ers): Travis Frederick, OC, Wisconsin – Don’t get me wrong, Frederick is a good player but for the Cowboys to drop down 13 spots and get only one pick (No. 74 overall) to add a center? This team needs more. Grade: C-”
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Bill Polian, ESPN Insider
“What he brings: Frederick is a nasty, versatile interior lineman who also has experience at guard. He is an effective hand-fighter who locks on and has the power base to create movement once in position. In terms of pass protection, he can anchor against power and masks his athletic limitations with sound footwork. It should also come as no surprise that a Wisconsin offensive lineman who can play multiple positions has great football IQ and rarely loses because of mental mistakes.
How he fits: This was obviously a need pick to fill the biggest weakness of this offense from a year ago. The only quality offensive lineman the Cowboys can count on right now is left tackle Tyron Smith. A combination of injuries and inconsistency devastated this group a year ago, which is really disappointing, considering they thought they had fixed their interior problems. What’s even more alarming about this offensive line is the fact that Tony Romo‘s agility allows him to take fewer sacks and hits than most quarterbacks. Frederick will have a chance to step in and start at any of the three interior positions.”
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Dan Graziano, NFC East Beat Writer, ESPN
“- They needed interior offensive line help more than any team in the NFL needed anything in this entire draft, and this guy is an interior offensive lineman. He can challenge Phil Costa for the center’s job or either starting guard for theirs.
– He’s a giant — 6-foot-3 5/8, 312 pounds — and known as a physical presence in the run game. Run blocking may be a higher priority for the Cowboys in their ongoing hunt for line help than pass protection is, since left tackle is the one spot at which they’re set and Tony Romo is pretty good at protecting himself and making plays on the run.
– Just because Scouts, Inc. ranked Warford 53rd and this guy 70th doesn’t make the pick ridiculous. You pay your scouts to find guys who fit what you want to do, and then you trust them. All week, everybody told me the Cowboys needed to trust their board, and it appears what happened here was that they didn’t have anyone they liked at 18 so they snagged an extra pick and moved down to take a guy they did like. If you think all that’s left to you is second-rounders, then why not just start the second round two picks early and add a third-rounder that might help you maneuver in that second round Friday night?”
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Danny Webster, Yahoo! Network
“The 6-foot-4, 312-pound All-Big Ten first-team selection from last season possesses a great deal of strength from the snap and is a quality run blocker.
Frederick’s pass blocking ability, however, might be the biggest question mark. He lacks quick footwork and has a tough time matching up against agile nose tackles.
Mike Mayock had a third-round grade labeled on Frederick, and it could be due to his lack of athleticism compared to the likes of the other offensive line taken in the first round.
All in all, this does address a glaring need for the Cowboys. Is it who they wanted? Or who they could’ve drafted? Not at all. Despite that, Frederick can play either guard or center and could be an instant starter once he gets to camp.”
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Jesus Flores, Rant Sports
“Here’s a kid who holds several Wisconsin weight room records and shows exceptional power when engaged against defensive linemen. At 6-4 340 lbs. Frederick will provide a huge upgrade over incumbent starter Phil Costa and could be used at guard thanks to his versatility.
What I like the most about Frederick is that he’s mean; he’ll knock defensive tackles on their rear end in the run game. He’s not the most fluid offensive lineman, but he will fit head coach Jason Garrett’s power running scheme. I also like that he’s an immovable force in the passing game. His strength and technique will help alleviate the pressure up the gut that quarterback Tony Romo has faced the last few seasons.
Without a doubt the Cowboys needed to upgrade the center position so in my opinion, this is a solid pick. I had Frederick going early in the second round so; this isn’t a reach by any means.”