The NFL Draft is one of my favorite events in the league calendar. It's a time of excitement and hope for every fan base. Watching bright college football stars get the call to play on Sundays, wondering who's picking who and what unexpected selection or trade will mess up every single mock draft available.
As every year, I've written up a Mock Draft of my own. This time around, the Dallas Cowboys don't count with a first round pick but it's still a ton of fun to see how things could pan out to the rest of the NFL teams. I hope you enjoy it and make sure to let me know what you think in the comments section below or tweet me @MauNFL and let's talk!
Note: This mock doesn't include any sort of trades.
R1/1 - ARI: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
I'm still not 100% convinced the Cardinals are going after Murray. However, the rumor is just way too strong to ignore. Kliff Kingsbury reportedly wants him as his new QB for his reign in Arizona and that's pretty understandable. Murray is the best QB in the Draft and has the most upside. Overthinking about his size is a mistake. He will be exciting to watch.
R1/2 - SF: Nick Bosa, EDGE, Ohio State
The 49ers are incredibly lucky to see the best player in the Draft fall to their lap. Nick Bosa didn't play most of last season as he decided to prepare for the Draft process after suffering an injury. But he's as good as they come. Some consider he was even better in college than his brother Joey, currently an LA Charger. San Francisco gets a premium pass rusher who will fit right in.
R1/3 - NYJ: Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky
This will be a hot spot for a trade once the Draft begins. However, in this mock draft we don't have any trades so if the Jets stay put, they'll probably get an edge rusher. In this case, it's Josh Allen. Kentucky's defense was great last season in big part thanks to Allen, who wrecked chaos in opposing offenses. The Jets got their franchise QB last year, now they can get their franchise pass rusher.
R1/4 - OAK: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama
The Raiders could go for a quarterback or for defense here. But with Kyler Murray gone, I have them going for DT Quinnen Williams. They need a pass rusher, but the top two are already gone and Williams is pretty good at going after quarterbacks from the interior. Raiders go after the best player available.
R1/5 - TB: Devin White, LB, LSU
Another team that could end up going for a QB knowing that the Jameis Winston project didn't exactly work out. In this case, Devin White is the best player available and one that fills a huge need in Tampa Bay after Kwon Alexander left. White is insanely good and is the middle linebacker any NFL team would want.
R1/6 - NYG: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
It's time for the Giants to move on from Eli Manning. With two picks in the first round, they should feel confident in going after Ohio State's Dwayne Haskins. Many question his upside, but he can be a winning QB early in his career. With QB-needy teams ahead of them, New York will likely have to trade up to get him.
R1/7 - JAC: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
This feels like one of the most surefire picks in the 2019 NFL Draft. The Jaguars need help in the offensive line and Taylor is the best prospect for the job. Jacksonville just signed Nick Foles to be their starting QB. Giving him protection is the next step.
R1/8 - DET: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston
Ed Oliver has been forgotten by many. but when the Draft comes around, I believe he'll go earlier than many expect nowadays. He's still one of the most talented prospects available this year and should find a home in the top 10. The Lions get a steal at #8 here. Many argue he didn't have production in Houston, but he drew double-teams (sometimes triple) way too often.
R1/9 - BUF: Jonah Williams, OL, Alabama
The Bills will be tempted to go after a skill player here, but the smart move is continue to build on their offensive line. Jonah Williams can line up anywhere and would be an upgrade for one of the worst units in 2019.
R1/10 - DEN: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
Joe Flacco isn't a long term answer in Denver. I don't think he's a short-term answer either, but we'll see. Drew Lock has things to work on, but his arm showed a lot of potential as he can make any throw. The Broncos may sit him in 2019, but they need to work on their future.
R1/11 - CIN: Devin Bush, LB, Michigan
The Cincinnati Bengals add a talented linebacker who can do a lot for their defense. He's fast, something they desperately need. With Vontaze Burfict gone and a growing need at the position, Devin Bush has great value at #11.
R1/12 - GB: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
The Packers get a weapon for Aaron Rodgers. D.K. Metcalf did nothing but impress week after week in Ole Miss and will likely be the first WR to be drafted. Metcalf is a huge, deep threat guy and what looks like a true #1 for the Packers' offense.
R1/13 - MIA: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State
Yet another QB-needy team I could see going up for a passer. However, they have a lot of other needs to work on, specially offensive line. Andre Dillard from Washington State is the best tackle available and would be a wise pick by the Dolphins. Build for the younger QB who could come to the team soon.
R1/14 - ATL: Rashan Gary, EDGE, Michigan
The Falcons still need a pass rusher and Rashan Gary is the way to go. Many analysts are divided when discussing how good is Gary, but at #14, the value is definitely there.
R1/15 - WAS: OL, Cody Ford, Oklahoma
Reaching for a QB would be a mistake here, and there's always the possibility of trading for Josh Rosen. Some say QB Daniel Jones will go earlier than the media expects, but in this scenario the Redskins upgrade their offensive line by adding Cody Ford. Ford could play ar right tackle or could be a guard in the NFL.
R1/16 - CAR: Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State
With the top offensive linemen gone, the Montez Sweat slide ends here. His huge Senior Bowl and Combine performances are too good to ignore. The Panthers find very good value at #16.
R1/17 - NYG: Brian Burns, EDGE, Florida State
After adding a quarterback, the Giants help their pass rush. They recently traded Olivier Vernon to the Cleveland Browns and need a new young stud for the job. Brian Burns is that guy. Burns has helped himself a lot this offseason.
R1/18 - MIN: Greg Little, OT, Minnesota VIkings
This might feel like a reach for the Vikings, but offensive line is the main reason they failed in 2018. They need desperate help and Greg Little will give them a decent starter with upside.
R1/19 - TEN: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
Somehow, the Titans find one of the most talented prospects with their 19th pick. T.J. Hockenson provides a good blocker in the run game plus a reliable pass catcher for Marcus Mariota.
R1/20 - PIT: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
The first cornerback to come off the board is Byron Murphy. The Steelers must address defense in the first round, and cornerback is where the best players are available at the moment. Murphy is a great pick.
R1/21 - SEA: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
Greedy Williams is a big cornerback ready to succeed in the NFL in coverage. The Seahawks get a cornerback who can line up against big, tall receivers in the league and contribute from day one.
R1/22 - BAL: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss
Lamar Jackson needs a young weapon and the Ravens get him one in A.J. Brown. He's versatile and can line up in the slot or outside the numbers. He's been an underrated prospect due to Metcalf's rise. He can be WR1 for the Ravens.
R1/23 - HOU: Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia
The Texans should prioritize offensive line, but right now there aren't any top prospects left. They should wait. Instead, they go after a solid cornerback for their defensive backfield. Deandre Baker has decent value here.
R1/24 - OAK: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
The Raiders let Jared Cook walk in free agency and now replace him with a top prospect in Noah Fant. Derek Carr's offense needs help and Fant will be a reliable pass catcher and a needed third-down target.
R1/25 - PHI: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama
The top running back in the Draft slides all the way to #25, where the Philadelphia Eagles take him to fill an urgent need. Jacobs is a balanced RB that will make a big difference in the Eagles' offense. Carson Wentz finds some new help.
R1/26 - IND: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma
NFL Network's Daniel Jeremiah has Marquise Brown as his top WR. The Colts signed Devin Funchess to a one year deal in free agency but still need long term answers at a weak position on their roster.
R1/27 - OAK: Clelin Ferrell, EDGE, Clemson
The Raiders finally get an edge rusher in Clelin Ferrell. Fast and powerful, Ferrell will get after opposing quarterbacks on Sundays. The Raiders get a steal at #27 here, the pick they earned by trading Amari Cooper to the Cowboys.
R1/28 - LAC: Jonathan Abraham, S, Mississippi State
Jonathan Abraham can be valuable both in the box and in coverage. After taking Derwin James last season, the Chargers complement him with Abraham. Is it a reach? Perhaps, but I don't think they'll regret it when their two safeties do great things together.
R1/29 - KC: Garrett Bradbury, OC, N.C. State
The Chiefs need to upgrade their pass rush. We all know that. However, there's not an edge rusher that's worth reaching for at #29. They'd do a great job by going after Garrett Bradbury instead, the best center in the class.
R1/30 - GB: Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama
After going for a WR earlier in the first round, the Packers continue to please Aaron Rodgers by giving him another weapon. Irv Smith will be a starting tight end right away, despite not having as many upside as the two Iowa prospects.
R1/31 - LAR: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson
The Rams need to add talent to their defensive line and with Christian Wilkins available, they shouldn't hesitate to pair him up with Aaron Donald. Wilkins was great in college and will surely be able to translate his talent to the next level.
R1/32 - NE: N'Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State
The Patriots need to give Tom Brady a weapon before his time is up. With Rob Gronkwoski gone, another threat in the passing game should be targeted. In this case, it's Wide Receiver N'Keal Harry. Some questioned his speed, but his 4.53 in the 40 yard dash should quiet the concerns.
Red River Rivalry Brings WR Devin Duvernay to Dallas, Hopefully to Stay
If you happen to be a fan of college football and the Dallas Cowboys, then the 2019 Red River Rivalry between the Oklahoma Sooners and Texas Longhorns might just be a game you want to tune in for this weekend. Both teams will showcase quite a few players who could enter the 2020 NFL Draft and one of the more talented, although still underrated, players could be of interest to the Cowboys.
Enter Texas Longhorns Wide Receiver Devin Duvernay.
When it comes to positions the Dallas Cowboy would be most interested in next year's NFL Draft, wide receiver might not be at the top the list… or so it would seem from the outside looking in. But if you look a little deeper only Amari Cooper, who the Cowboys will extend eventually, and Michael Gallup are locks to stick around beyond this season. That's where Devin Duvernay comes in.
With Randall Cobb and Tavon Austin under one-year contracts, the Dallas Cowboys could be looking for their next slot receiver. Devin Duvernay may be new to the position with the Longhorns this year, but he's already proving to be a dynamic weapon out of the slot and could be exactly what the Cowboys are looking for.
The slot WR position is an important one for the Dallas Cowboys, especially for Quarterback Dak Prescott. It has become a security blanket of sorts over the years for Prescott and finding a sure-handed receiver he's comfortable with is easier said than done. Luckily though, they don't come much more reliable than Devin Duvernay.
According to the folks over at Pro Football Focus, Duvernay was one of the rare collegiate WRs who didn't drop a pass in 2018. That's pretty impressive considering he played the Z-receiver role with the Longhorns last year before moving into the slot in 2019. I'd say that's pretty sure-handed. Down the field targets are much more difficult to haul in than the ones thrown near or around the line of scrimmage.
Sure handedness isn't Devin Duvernay's only impressive trait though. His physicality and infectious attitude on the field is something that would pair nicely with Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup, both of whom are a little low-key/reserved as far as their on-field persona is concerned. Duvernay is a WR who likes to punish would be tackler and he has the build to do just that.
At 5'11", 210 pounds, Duvernay's thick, well muscled frame is much more RB-esque than that of a traditional receiver. His build is comparable to Carolina's D.J. Moore and San Francisco's Deebo Samuel, both of whom were taken relatively high in their respective drafts the past couple of years. His play to both of these WRs is similar as well.
The soon to be former Longhorns WR has all the intangibles to take it to the house anytime he touches the ball. His physicality alone makes him difficult for any defensive back to tackle, but he also possesses elite speed as well. He claims he can run a 4.3 40-yard dash and his film certainly suggests he's capable of doing just that.
Overall, Devin Duvernay is absolutely someone the Dallas Cowboys should keep an eye on when the Oklahoma Sooners and Texas Longhorns meet up this weekend in Dallas for the Red River Rivalry. I'd be more than happy if he ended up being one of their Day 2 selections, which is where I have him being drafted right now.
Do you like the idea of WR Devin Duvernay in a Dallas Cowboys uniform?
Cowboys Land CB in Matt Miller’s way-too-early 2020 NFL Mock Draft
What better way to kick off the 2019 NFL regular-season and the start of college football then a way-too-early 2020 mock draft? Well, you're in luck. Matt Miller, one of my favorite draft analysts, just released his latest 2020 NFL Mock Draft for Bleacherreport.com and you may be surprised as to who he selected for the Dallas Cowboys.
One of the reasons I enjoy Matt Miller's work above many other so-called "draft analysts" is because he has his ear to the ground and has a pretty good connection with scouts around the league. That kind of information is pretty invaluable, but he also has a solid understanding of team "needs". Add all of that up and you get a really solid guesstimate of who could be on a certain teams radar, in this case the Dallas Cowboys.
Let's take a look at who Matt Miller predicted the Dallas Cowboys could draft in the 2020 NFL Draft with their first-round selection. Miller set this particular mock draft according to current Super Bowl odds from Caesar's Palace.
25. Dallas Cowboys
The Pick: CB Bryce Hall, Virginia
Matt Miller predicting the Dallas Cowboys select Cornerback Bryce Hall with there first-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft definitely seems like a plausible possibility. He knows the Cowboys can't afford to pay everyone and he even said as much. With Byron Jones and Anthony Brown entering a contract year in 2019 and with Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis having expiring contracts after 2020, Dallas' secondary could definitely need addressing.
The Cowboys know this as well which is why they probably attempted to add some developmental depth to the CB position through the 2019 NFL Draft when they took Mike Jackson in the fifth-round. Jackson has the attributes they look for in their corners, but in no way has he looked like he'd be ready for a starting role next season. That makes Miller's Bryce Hall selection a definite possibility.
According to Miller's 2020 mock draft Bryce Hall is the fourth secondary player to come off the board. There were three cornerbacks selected ahead of him and one safety. He does fit the mold Kris Richard prefers in his CBs (6'1", 200) and also has the physical playing style in press coverage Richard likes as well. All in all, this is a very solid prediction for the Dallas Cowboys.
Whether or not the Dallas Cowboys would choose to select a CB this early is unknown at this point. But, it certainly seems like a high possibility considering all the corners with expiring contracts in a year or two. I think the Cowboys could look into taking a tight end or a safety with their first-round pick as well, but again it's way too early to have any kind of clue as to how their draft board will look like when the 2020 NFL Draft rolls around.
I don't know about you, but I'll be keeping a closer eye on Bryce Hall this season just in case Matt Miller is correct. I'd like to get a head start to see just how well he would fit, or not, with the Dallas Cowboys.
Do you like the Bryce Hall selection for the Dallas Cowboys?
2020 RB Options for the Cowboys if Things Turn Ugly With Ezekiel Elliott
The Dallas Cowboys could have a Le'Veon Bell-type situation on their hands in regards to Ezekiel Elliott. It's been reported Zeke is contemplating a holdout until his financial demands are met by way of a contract extension. This could put the Cowboys between a rock and a hard place.
Ezekiel Elliott is technically still under contract for two more seasons because of the fifth-year option he carries as a former first-round draft pick. Threatening to hold out seems a little premature, but Zeke has the Cowboys by the short hairs right now, meaning the leverage is on his side.
This is a situation that could, unfortunately, turn ugly, and quickly.
Check out Ep. 6 of Cowboys Weekly - Segment 1 for more discussion from Inside The Star on Ezekiel Elliott's Hold-Out situation:
The Cowboys have several other mouths to feed and Zeke may not be at the top the list considering his continued immaturity issues off the field. His on-field production is undeniable, but so are the red flags that keep popping up. It may be time for Dallas to look for his successor and fortunately, the 2020 running back draft class is a pretty good place to start.
Let's take a look…
Jonathan Taylor, Wisconsin
Jonathan Taylor (5'11", 219) would probably be the ideal candidate to replace Ezekiel Elliott for the Dallas Cowboys. He is one of the more productive collegiate running backs expected to enter the 2020 NFL Draft and has the intangibles that are eerily similar to Zeke as far as size, speed, and power are concerned. Unfortunately, that likely makes him a top 10 selection, putting him out of reach of the Cowboys.
Taylor doesn't come without his warts though. As a true Junior, he's seen a lot of action in his three years as the starting RB for the Badgers. That wear-and-tear is a cause for concern because it could lead to durability issues once in the NFL. He also has struggled with his ball security. He's put the ball on the ground 12 times in the last two seasons, which will need to be cleaned up at the next level. But, there's no denying his talent.
D'Andre Swift, Georgia
D'Andre Swift (5'9", 215) is one of my favorite RB options in the 2020 draft class to replace Ezekiel Elliott if things turn ugly with the Dallas Cowboys. He doesn't have the same kind of production as Jonathan Taylor and is still somewhat under the radar because he's been stuck in a committee with the Nick Chubb, Sony Michel, and Elijah Holyfield the last two years. But mark my words, he will be the next great RB to enter the NFL out of Georgia. Swift could be as ideal of a candidate to replace Zeke as there is.
Dallas likes an inside runner with zone vision as well as someone who can be a threat in the passing game, and D'Andre fits the bill. Despite being a little smaller in size than Zeke, he still possesses the power to run inside. Then throw in his receiving ability, 32 catches for 297 yards and three touchdowns last season, and you have someone who is more than capable of replacing #21's offensive production. He's projected to be a late first-round pick, which could put him within striking distance of the Cowboys.
J.K. Dobbins, Ohio State
J.K. Dobbins (5'10", 214) could be someone who is already on the Dallas Cowboys' radar as a potential Ezekiel Elliott replacement. They seem to have a liking for Ohio State running backs (Zeke, Rod Smith, Mike Weber) and could turn to another Buckeye to carry the rock. Dobbins, an all-purpose back and native Texan (Houston, TX) checks all of the boxes the Cowboys typically look for in their featured back.
Dobbins has the size, speed, and vision to be a featured back in the NFL. He has rushed for over 1,000 yards his last two seasons while splitting time with Mike Weber and has averaged about 200 receiving yards during that time span as well. He's not the most physical back, but he keeps moving his feet upon contact. He also needs to improve in pass protection in order to become a true three-down RB in the NFL. But his vision, shorter area quickness, elusiveness, and patience as a runner are all top-notch.
Travis Etienne, Clemson
The breakout season of Quarterback Trevor Lawrence, unfortunately, overshadowed the Heisman-worthy year Travis Etienna (5'10", 200) had in 2018. In his first year as a starter, he rushed for 1,658 yards and 24 touchdowns, all the while averaging an impressive 8.1 yards per carry. If he can follow that up in 2019 he could become the most coveted back in the 2020 draft class and become a really intriguing option for the Dallas Cowboys.
Etienne will probably need to add a little bit more "good weight" and muscle to his frame if he wants to be considered a featured back in the NFL. If he can accomplish that and not lose any of his elusiveness or speed he should climb up draft boards. If not, he may not be of much interest to the Cowboys because they already have a similar RB in Tony Pollard. He does possess plug-and-play talent though, making him a potential Ezekiel Elliott replacement.
Najee Harris, Alabama
Najee Harris (6'2", 230) is yet another big, physical running back who has had to remain patient and wait his turn at Alabama, but 2019 could be his breakout season. With Bo Scarbrough, Josh Jacobs, and Damien Harris ahead of him on the depth chart the last two years, Najee saw limited playing time. But, when he did receive the opportunity to showcase his skill set he didn't disappoint. His physical talent could make him a top-5 running back come draft time.
Despite his limited playing time last the two seasons, he averaged over 6 yards a carry. He rushed for a career-high 783 yards and four touchdowns on just 117 carries in 2018 and should easily surpass those totals this season. In doing so he should become one of the more sought after RBs in the 2020 draft class. With the Cowboys, as Zeke's potential replacement, his physicality would pair nicely with Tony Pollard's slashing style. A Harris/Pollard duo could be just as productive as the Cowboys running game has been in the past.
The above five running backs are all potential Ezekiel Elliott replacements who I really like and will likely receive the most national attention due to the programs in which they play. But, they are only a few in what looks like a really strong 2020 RB draft class. Here a few honorable mentions you should also keep a close eye on as well.
- Cam Akers, Florida State
- Eno Benjamin, Arizona State
- Kennedy Brooks, Oklahoma
- Ke'Shawn Vaughn, Vanderbilt
- Kylin Hill, Mississippi State
I believe any of these running backs mentioned above at any point in the article could be in play for the Dallas Cowboys if they choose to play hardball with Ezekiel Elliott over his want for a contract extension. The 2020 running back draft class has a plethora of potential starters and this could be in the back of the Cowboys mind when they're determining where they want to spend their money. Paying top dollar for an RB might not fit in their budget, even for one as talented as Zeke.
Do you like any of these potential RBs as replacements for Ezekiel Elliott?
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