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Patrick Surtain II or Jaycee Horn… Who’s Cowboys’ Preferred CB1?

Early on in the draft process fans around were debating whether the should draft or II with the 10th overall pick in the first-round. As we draw closer to the big event in the though, the 2021 , the focus has now shifted to either Surtain or . Today, we will try to figure out which of the two prospects is the best fit in Dallas.

Patrick Surtain II vs. Jaycee Horn


Patrick Surtain II

Jaycee Horn

Height 6020 6006
Weight 208 205
40-yard dash 4.46 4.39
Arm Length 32 ¾” 33”
Wingspan 78 4/8” 77 ¼”
Broad Jump 131” 133”
Vertical Jump 39” 41.5”

From a measurable's standpoint there's not much that separates or Jaycee Horn. Surtain's obviously a little bigger and Horn is probably the little more athletic of the two, but both fit the prototypical mold teams look for in an outside cornerback. So, how are we or the Dallas Cowboys supposed to differentiate the two to determine who's the better fit?

In all honesty there's no right or wrong answer here. Patrick Surtain II and Jaycee Horn would both be an excellent addition to Dallas' , however, I do believe we can break this down a little further to see which player might just be the better overall fit… Surtain or Horn?

CB Patrick Surtain II, Alabama

Patrick Surtain II
CB Patrick Surtain II

There's no denying Patrick Surtain II fits the criteria of a prototypical top cornerback prospect in this year's draft class. He checks all of the boxes, has the proven track record, and as the son of a former three-time CB Patrick Surtain Sr. has football in his blood. Add it all up and he's an obvious choice for the Dallas Cowboys at #10.

Surtain is considered the “safest” CB in the entire class. His track record, football IQ, and the disciplined/technique sound way he played at Alabama is why many have him as a top ranked player at his position this year. Honestly, there's not very many negatives about his game. You really have to nitpick to find anything bad to say about him.

One of the biggest knocks on Surtain's game is his lack of interceptions during his time in Alabama. Although talented in coverage he seems to struggle getting his hands on the ball. Another concern is his delayed reaction off the snap of the ball. This sometimes allows receivers to beat his jam and gain separation almost immediately. This might be the biggest negative to his game because of his questionable long speed and short area quickness.

Overall though, there's a reason why nearly everybody is mocking him to the Dallas Cowboys. He is a natural fit in 's heavy Cover 1/3 scheme, however, that doesn't necessarily make him the best fit.

CB Jaycee Horn, South Carolina

Jaycee Horn
CB Jaycee Horn

While many believe Patrick Surtain II is the top-ranked CB in this year's draft class the margin between him and Jaycee Horn might not be as wide as people would lead you to believe. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if Horn is the CB1 on a lot of teams big boards, including the Dallas Cowboys. However, that's merely speculation right now.

Like Surtain though, Jaycee Horn checks all of the boxes for what teams look for in a prototypical cornerback prospect. And also like Surtain, Horn has football in his blood. As the son of former four-time Pro Bowl WR Joe Horn he's been fully immersed in the football world from an early age and it's translated to the field.

What really sets Jaycee Horn apart from Patrick Surtain II is his versatility, physicality, and attitude. Unlike the former the Crimson Tide CB who is considered a “left corner only” by many, Horn predominantly played in the slot in 2018 before moving outside in 2019-20. That in itself provides great value, but it's his attitude and physicality that could endear him to Dallas' staff.

Jaycee's high-end athleticism and physical, in-your-face mentality is something that has been sorely lacking in Dallas' secondary for quite some time. Then you throw in his ball-tracking ability, instincts in man coverage, his smooth hip flipping ability, and his route recognition you've got a prospect definitely in play for the Cowboys at #10.

The former South Carolina CB isn't without his flaws though. He's a little bit grabby in coverage and that could result in in the NFL. However, that could have just been him taking advantage of the fact the NCAA doesn't have an illegal contact rule. He also needs to do a better job of tackling in open space. Overall though, there is a lot to like about his game and his upside.

Choose Your Fighter…

Opinions of course are going to very, but if you've read any of my previous work you already know I'm a huge Jaycee Horn fan and believe he's the better fit with the Dallas Cowboys. No to Patrick Surtain II… I just think Horn not only brings more to the table, but has more upside as well. Whether or not Dallas believes the same though is completely unknown at this point in time.

Ultimately the Cowboys decision will likely come down to whether or not they are looking for more of a CB1 who has the ability to travel with receivers in coverage or one who can potentially lock down his side of the field. If they want the latter Surtain is probably their guy, but if they want a CB who can potentially travel with the Tyreek Hill types Horn should be the pick.

Which direction will they go?

Brian Martin
Brian Martin
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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