Connect with us

NFL Draft

Round Table: Staff Predictions for the Cowboys’ 1st Round Draft Pick

Published

on

Official Inside The Star Staff Draft Predicitions 7

There’s obviously been a lot of talk regarding who the Cowboys are going to pick at 28. Several names have been tossed around, and with the draft queued up for 7 p.m. CDT tonight, the staff here at Inside The Star wanted to put our official predictions down on paper as to who the newest member of the Dallas Cowboys would be.

Before we jump into the predictions, I wanted to quickly cover the players who have recently become the favorites to land with America’s team, all of which play either cornerback or defensive end.

When we look at the cornerback group, it seems to boil down to two names: Kevin King (Washington), and Adoree’ Jackson (USC). Conversely, there have been quite a few names mentioned when discussing fits for that all-important right defensive end spot: Charles Harris (Missouri), Takk McKinley (UCLA), TJ Watt (Wisconsin), and Tyus Bowser (Houston).

These six names have become the talk of the Twitter-sphere, but in all actuality, it could very likely be another player. Taking these players into account, our staff have finally drawn one name each for our gut prediction as to who will dawn the star tonight.

The Landry Trophy: Tyus Bowser – DE – Houston

I think the conversation here is between TJ Watt and Tyus Bowser, given the fact that Takk McKinley’s medical re-check sounds like it didn’t come back as good as teams hoped.

Athletically, Watt and Bowser are almost identical. But, I can’t help but to note the statistic and availability differences between the two players. Both average about a half a sack per game, but Bowser has sustained that over a four year span, with his only injury coming to his eye.

Watt had all of his sacks come from a single year, due, in part, to a knee injury contributing to a two year hiatus from football. I also believe there’s a good chance TJ Watt goes before pick 28, which makes the decision easier.

Combining the two, picking Bowser makes a ton of sense.

Official Inside The Star Staff Draft Predicitions 8

Brian Martin: Malik McDowell – DE – Michigan State

Malik McDowell if he is still available – TJ Watt if he isn’t.

I’m getting the feeling that Rod Marinelli really likes McDowell; he could be a Mario Williams type player if he puts everything together.

Kevin Brady: Adoree’ Jackson – CB – USC

After struggling with this choice for a little while, I’ve finally decided that I think USC CB Adoree Jackson will be the pick. I think it’s very possible that TJ Watt, their presumed favorite, will be off the board by 28 with teams like DET and MIA picking ahead of them.

It may come down to Kevin King (if he makes it there), Jackson, and Takkarist McKinley. For some reason, my gut says they go Jackson, even if we won’t love the pick.

Official Inside The Star Staff Draft Predicitions 3

Mauricio Rodriguez: Charles Harris – DE – Missouri

I think that — with a deep class — the Cowboys will wait to draft a DB.

With the 28th pick my guess is they draft a pass rusher in the form of DE Charles Harris. A prospect with a lot of counter moves will be a great addition to these team’s Rush Men. He will be a good pro under Rod Marinelli.

Jess Haynie: Marlon Humphrey – CB/SS – Alabama

I am increasingly worried that a run on defensive ends is going to leave us with no good options for a true right-side pass rusher. Because of that, I’m going with cornerback Marlon Humphrey from Alabama.

I think he fits our scheme very well to be able to contribute immediately.

Official Inside The Star Staff Draft Predicitions 5

Sean Martin: Tyus Bowser – DE – Houston

I’m banking on Tyus Bowser staying as the best kept pass rushing secret in this draft for a few more days, until the 28th overall pick at the 2017 NFL Draft.

After a long offseason of debate on if the Cowboys could even find a worthwhile defensive end with this pick, Tyus Bowser has emerged as a legitimate option with tons of upside. Plus, we need a guy named Bowser on this team.

Official Inside The Star Staff Draft Predicitions 6

RJ Ochoa: TJ Watt – DE – Wisconsin

If you have a name that’s got two letters, with one of them being a J, you start off ahead of most people in my book. TJ Watt has the pedigree, the athleticism, and the tenacity needed to get it done on a defensive line that’s lacking in those areas.

He’s the perfect mix of what’s needed and what’ll sell, and I’m ready to buy it all.

TJ Watt, and let’s party.

Let’s Summarize

As you can tell, the ITS Staff seems fairly confident that the Cowboys take their “war daddy” edge rusher in the first round tonight.

Why do we say that?

If we simply play the numbers game, there just seems to be more talent in the second round at corner than there is for the type of right defensive end that the Cowboys covet.

Regardless of who they take in the first, and who they take in the second, I’d bet a large sum of money that the Cowboys don’t walk out of that war room on Saturday evening without having added at least a DE and a CB, and after our draft last year, I’m perfectly fine trusting this staff to pick those guys.

ADVERTISEMENT

Dallas Cowboys fan since the Drew Bledsoe "era." I love Tony AND Dak. I like to think that I'm the most objective that a fan can get, while still being a diehard, which I truly believe is the 8th wonder of the world. Go Cowboys!!

NFL Draft

Cowboys Draft Target: Michigan DT Maurice Hurst

Kevin Brady

Published

on

Cowboys Draft Target: Michigan DT Maurice Hurst

Heading into the 2018 NFL Draft it’s pretty clear that defensive tackle is towards the top of the Dallas Cowboys’ needs. Dallas has invested multiple draft picks and resources into the secondary, linebackers, and defensive ends. But their interior defensive line still needs to add depth and talent.

One potential draft target to fill this need would be Michigan Wolverines defensive tackle Maurice Hurst. Over at Slant Sports I completed a full scouting report on Hurst, giving him a first round grade and ranking him atop this defensive tackle class.

At 6’2″ and about 280 pounds, Maurice Hurst clearly projects as a three technique at the professional level. Hurst played the under-tackle most of the time at Michigan, but he did kick down over the center or inside the guards at times. Still, I wouldn’t expect a team to draft Hurst to be their one tech of the future.

Hurst is an explosive beast at defensive tackle. Playing with a nonstop motor Hurst wins off the ball often, but also created effort and hustle plays behind the line of scrimmage during his college career. Hurst’s first step, quick hands, ability to win with leverage, and overall explosiveness shine through on film often.

nfldraft2018 maurice hurst 5 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

“Here’s an example of that explosive first step. Hurst is lined up as the 3-technique on the far side. Winning with his first step quickness and burst, Hurst gives the offensive linemen absolutely no chance to block him. He then powers through the recovery attempt by the lineman to make the tackle in the backfield.”

Hurst clearly doesn’t have the prototypical size of a defensive tackle in the NFL, but his play style suits his body well. His explosiveness and burst off the ball make him incredibly dangerous, and his quick hands, low pad level, and strong lower body help him to win against any offensive lineman.

He obviously isn’t at this level, and may not deserve eye-to-eye comparisons with this player, but Maurice Hurst’s play style and body type remind me of a young Aaron Donald. (I’m not saying he’s better than Aaron Donald, save the comments).

nfldraft2018 maurice hurst 8 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

In terms of his fit with the Cowboys, Hurst would be competing with Maliek Collins for playing time at the three technique. Respected draft guru Dane Brugler has mocked Hurst to Dallas in his latest mock draft, but the way they handle both Collins and impending restricted free agent David Irving will play a huge role in determining if Hurst would even fill a need.

Regardless, Maurice Hurst is a name deserving of first round buzz and Cowboys Nation should keep their eyes on him this offseason.

ADVERTISEMENT

Continue Reading

NFL Draft

Sean’s Scout: Memphis WR Anthony Miller a Needed Weapon for Cowboys

Sean Martin

Published

on

Sean's Scout: Memphis WR Anthony Miller A Needed Weapon For Cowboys
AP Photo / Jessica Hill

Slotted to pick 19th overall in the 2018 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys find themselves in position to add a first-round talent to a team that fell just short of the playoffs at 9-7 in 2017. Faltering entirely on offense without RB Ezekiel Elliott too many times this season, it’s hard to argue this asset is not best spent on new talent at WR.

The Cowboys haven’t drafted a wide receiver in the first round since 2010, trading up for Oklahoma State’s Dez Bryant. Frequent injuries and the inability to develop with QB Dak Prescott have diminished Bryant’s status as a star receiver in Dallas, and it may be time to overhaul the position entirely.

After scouting Memphis WR Anthony Miller, he may be just what the Dallas Cowboys need. Let’s take a closer look at his fit in the Cowboys’ offense in the first draft-season edition of Sean’s Scout.

WR Anthony Miller 2 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

With 96 receptions for 1,462 yards and 18 touchdowns in his final season at Memphis, Senior WR Anthony Miller is one of the top players at his position in the 2018 NFL Draft. These inflated numbers in the Tigers’ pass-happy offense do little to highlight Miller as a next level prospect…

This film clip and quote from my full scouting report on Miller shows the pure play-making ability Miller has. Miller wouldn’t fill the Cowboys need for an over-the-top burner at WR, but he has no problem tracking the ball with ease and adjusting in the air to make big plays down the field.

…Miller is as tough of a cover as you’ll find thanks to his explosive and concise release off the line.

Anthony Miller is certainly a “Dak-friendly” pass catcher, as he possesses the catch radius to snag passes away from his frame using his exceptionally strong hands. Even when he is covered, Miller is open vertically.

With that said, Miller has more than enough ability to separate with good initial quickness and elite balance through his routes.

WR Anthony Miller 4 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

…he wastes no time accelerating through the secondary, and running with a powerful stride that makes it difficult to bring him down.

There may be better technical route runners in this draft class, but few set up defenders as consistently well as Miller — who has the production to match these NFL traits.

A willing run blocker too, Miller could walk into Dallas and immediately earn snaps as an X, Z, or Y receiver. Miller’s best fit to start his career is likely as a Z receiver, drawing less attention in coverage while being allowed to run a full route tree.

…Miller gets on cornerbacks in a hurry, setting them up with his fluidity and size to track the football through contact.

A potential replacement for Terrance Williams with the Cowboys, Miller is somewhat of a similar player in the way he wins with mostly size.

The Memphis product would still be an upgrade over Williams though, as it is much easier to get the ball in Miller’s hands. Add in the red-zone ability that Anthony Miller has to box out defenders, and the run-after-catch burst as an inside target, and Miller is a weapon the Cowboys could desperately use.

WR Anthony Miller 1 – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

…I found myself constantly impressed with the speed at which Miller gets up the field when taking the ball underneath.

Miller will have nothing but opportunities to raise his draft stock over the coming months. He will be at this month’s Senior Bowl, receiving NFL-level coaching to refine his game. The Scouting Combine will also be critical for Miller’s testing numbers to confirm the athlete seen on tape dominating at Memphis will take the next step.

Earning a second round grade on my 2018 NFL Draft Board, there is a chance the Cowboys have to use their first round pick if they truly want Anthony Miller in Silver and Blue. A very complete player that fills a need, Miller as the Cowboys first pick could make plenty of sense in April.

Tell us what you think about “Sean’s Scout: Memphis WR Anthony Miller a Needed Weapon for Cowboys” in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

ADVERTISEMENT

Continue Reading

NFL Draft

Luxury or Need for Cowboys to Draft Another 1st-Round OL?

Brian Martin

Published

on

Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, Travis Frederick, offensive line

Due to growing concerns about Tyron Smith‘s availability and future health, due to reoccurring back injuries, there seems to be a growing consensus among Dallas Cowboys fans that there’s a need to draft an offensive lineman with the first-round pick. But, is it actually a need, or would it be more of a luxury?

There is legitimate concern about Tyron Smith and his future health.

Back injuries have a way of flaring up at the most inopportune times. It’s also not an injury that’s going away anytime soon, if ever. This is the unknown the Cowboys are faced with heading into the off-season, and it could end up having a major impact on the direction they go in the 2018 NFL Draft.

There seems to be a growing consensus around Cowboys Nation that the Dallas Cowboys should seriously consider selecting the best available offensive tackle with the 19th overall pick.

There are probably two reasons for this:

  1. Tyron Smith’s health concerns, and
  2. the need to upgrade the swing tackle position after watching Byron Bell and Chaz Green play in 2017.

But, the question remains: is drafting yet another offensive lineman in the first-round a luxury or need for the Dallas Cowboys?

Personally, I can see both sides of this argument. So, let’s break it down a little and examine each.

Luxury

Zack Martin

Dallas Cowboys RG Zack Martin

The Dallas Cowboys have already invested an enormous amount of resources to build arguably the best offensive line in the NFL.

They’ve spent three first-round draft picks to acquire Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick, and Zack Martin, two of which have already received long-term extensions with Martin waiting in the wings.

That’s a lot of money devoted to one position, which ultimately means the Cowboys have to go cheaper in other areas in order to fit under the salary cap. This is the money that would be used in free agency to acquire some of those higher-priced free agents fans are always hankering for.

It also can be used to re-sign some of the Cowboys players at other positions, such as DeMarcus Lawrence.

But, it’s not only the money that makes drafting a first-round OL a luxury.

Four out of five of the Cowboys OL are already pretty much set in stone. The left guard position is really the only unoccupied position right now, but that could be filled rather easily. This, of course, is assuming Tyron Smith stays healthy, but regardless, he is the starting left tackle when the 2018 season begins.

Need

Byron Bell

Dallas Cowboys OL Byron Bell

There’s no reason to believe Tyron Smith will be able to play an entire 16-game season going forward. The last two seasons he has had to sit out several games due to injuries, and unfortunately his back issues aren’t going away anytime soon.

To make matters worse, Dallas doesn’t have an adequate backup, which was proven on more than one occasion in 2017. Hence the need.

With the exception of the quarterback, the left tackle position is arguably the most important on offense. They protect the QB’s blindside and are largely responsible for keeping him healthy and upright.

There’s a reason they are drafted so highly and paid so handsomely: they are that important to a team’s success.

There was also a reason the Dallas Cowboys offense started to sputter once Tyron Smith started missing time. Opposing defenses no longer respected the Cowboys LT, and started putting their best pass rusher on that side to get after Dak Prescott.

Prescott ended up having happy feet and it had a ripple effect throughout the entire offense, and not in a good way.

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Quite honestly, I think it would be a luxury to draft any kind of offensive lineman with the Cowboys’ first-round selection, but I wouldn’t be completely surprised if that’s the direction they went. There are positives and negatives to both sides of the argument.

But, if they stick to the draft board and an OL is their highest rated player there, I say go for it.

The only thing we can do is have faith that the Dallas Cowboys know more about Tyron Smith’s health and his availability to play then we do as fans. If they decide to draft an offensive lineman early, I think we should all take that as an indication that they are worried about Smith, at least a little bit.

Luxury or Need: Do the Cowboys draft a first-round OL?

ADVERTISEMENT

Continue Reading

Reader Survey

Want to help make Inside The Star better?

We’re collecting feedback from our readers about the site. It only takes <2 minutes to complete, and can be done from any device.

> Take the survey now

Don’t worry, your information will not be shared with anyone but me (Bryson T.).

Advertisement
Advertisement
Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here

Trending