Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected ⋆
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Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected

Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected

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Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected

Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected

As we count down the final two slow weeks before Cowboys training camp in Oxnard, California, a great way to pass the time is to project who will actually make this Cowboys team out of camp.

An incredibly competitive roster that added – based on my pre-draft assessments – at least five rookie starters, playing time could be at a premium especially on the defensive side of the ball and in the secondary. Second round pick Chidobe Awuzie and third round selection Jourdan Lewis are expected to turn over a depth chart at cornerback that also features Anthony Brown, Orlando Scandrick, free-agent acquisition Nolan Carroll, and forgotten rookie Marquez White.

White, drafted in the sixth round with the 216th overall pick out of Florida State, may be facing an uphill battle to earn snaps at CB just because of his draft position, but his size and traits lend themselves to White quickly bursting onto the scene.

The Cowboys likely still want to see their 60th overall pick in Awuzie work out as a corner, but he does come to Dallas with experience at safety – and has flashed potential as a safety next to Byron Jones through OTAs and minicamp.

Rod Marinelli and the Cowboys defense expects to be playing from ahead plenty this season. Dallas’ scheme is designed defensively to protect leads, which allows their cornerbacks to play off in coverage and keep throws in front of them.

This is where Marquez White could thrive, especially with athletes like Jones, Awuzie, and Jeff Heath behind him.

Asked to play as a physical boundary cornerback as well as a slot player and free safety at times, White can be difficult to separate from as he can flip his hips and mirror receivers – keeping them at bay with his 32 1/8″ arms.

White’s pure ball skills when turned around may be limited, but he excels at sticking to his man in coverage and forcing quarterbacks to throw elsewhere.

Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected 1

This quote comes from my complete Marquez White scouting report, and although expecting White to impress instantly as a boundary CB is a bit of a projection thanks to his experience in mostly press coverage, it is one that we could see very soon.

White emerging as a starting-caliber CB has even been looked at negatively by some in Cowboys Nation, assuming it means that Awuzie or Lewis struggles, Brown takes a step back, or the Carroll signing becomes unnecessary.

The Cowboys will live in their Nickel defense once again in 2017 though, meaning there will be additional chances for White to see the field depending on which CBs kick inside, and even more opportunities will come White’s way in a Dime package that suddenly has waves of talented personnel to be deployed for Dallas.

Rookie Marquez White was drafted for his traits as a developmental sixth round cornerback that fits the Cowboys’ scheme, but I believe his scheme fit will be better than anyone could have projected after the team already drafted two CBs well before him.

After losing consistent starters at both CB and S to free agency, a welcome infusion of young talent has arrived to the Cowboys’ secondary. They’ll need as many viable defensive backs in coverage as possible to contend with these rookies in 2017, and Marquez White will put his name into this mix for the better very soon.

Tell us what you think about “Rookie CB Marquez White Could Have Bigger Role Than Expected” in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @ShoreSportsNJ!

Sean Martin

Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Pleasant NJ, no we're not how you think we are. Host of "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and wmscradio.com every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Also available through iHeart radio! Keep up with the show on Twitter @UFRWMSC!

4 Comments
  • Emilio Gonzalez

    I think he might be a sleeper of this draft and yes he would have a bigger role on the Cowboys secondary don’t count him out. Thanks

    • https://InsideTheStar.com Sean Martin

      Thank you for reading!

  • Don

    With all the talk about defense and where their strengths will be I feel all eyes will be or mine anyway on the secondary. DE is a hot spot too but feel we are going to be better there than most think. I really don’t get hyped until after the preseason and the real deal starts.

  • John Williams

    I really like what they did in drafting him in the 6th. Could be another steal of a corner there.

    I love the defensive back group that they are able to deploy going into the season.

    They can play nickel, dime, quarter with very little difficulty with the DB group they can throw out there.

    There are a ton of pretty good to really good passing teams on their schedule, so it will be all hands on deck this year.

    In a 4-2-5 nickel formation, I could see them playing Heath or Byron next to Lee to cover the Tight end. Awuzie at Safety next to Heath or Byron and Carroll, Scan, and Brown as the Corners with Lewis rotating in to spell the aging Scandrick.

    In a 4-1-6 dime package I could see Awuzie and Heath rotating at Safety with Carroll, Scan, Lewis, and Brown as the Corners. Awuzie could also rotate in the slot with Scan and Lewis.

    In a 3-2-6 Dime Package (which they went to a ton last season), again I could see Heath or Byron moving down to play alongside Lee and Awuzie going to safety. The corners would then be Carroll, Scan, Lewis, Brown and White could mix in there as well.

    If the team decides to go 3-1-7, they have so many potential combinations.

    I’m definitely curious to see what White does in training camp. It’s possible, though unlikely that the rookies could push Carroll off the roster if they perform well. Scandrick and Brown offer enough of a veteran presence to allow the rookies to get snaps and grow. But because the base defense is the nickel and the team has high aspirations this season, I think it’s more likely that Lewis and Awuzie get rotational snaps this year and then become full time players in 2018.

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