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The Dallas Cowboys 2023 Draft: How Can the Picks Impact 2023?

Another Draft has come and gone. Like every year, the temperature of the fan base ranges from cold as a North Texas winter, to as hot as a South Texas summer.

“What a terrible pick!” screams one-half of the Cowboys' fan base.

“That late-round pick has potential to be a Hall of Famer!” shouts the other half.

The reality is NOBODY can possibly grade draft picks before they've even stepped foot on the turf of . “Nobody” includes the experts on the major television networks, as well as the so-called experts on .

In my inaugural article for , we will discuss draft picks and how they could potentially impact the 2023 version of the Dallas Cowboys.

Welcome to Dallas Mazi Smith
Cowboys' 1st Round pick,

Rd 1, 26 Overall — NT Mazi Smith, University of Michigan

At the moment NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced this pick, many in Cowboys Nation threw their hands up in disbelief.

Admittedly, I also stared at my television screen wondering why as Georgia DE Nolan Smith and Penn State's Joey Porter Jr. remained at the top of the Best Available Players list.

My disdain was short-lived, however, as I took a deeper look into Mazi-rati's (we can work on that nickname) draft profile.

Checking in at a whopping 6'3″ tall and 323lbs, the former Wolverine is the first defensive tackle drafted in the 1st round by the Dallas Cowboys since in 1991. Mazi's strength was on display at the combine, throwing up 225lbs an astounding 34 times.

His college stats are nothing to write home about, only recording 0.5 sacks in his Michigan career.

However, he displays the strength, quickness, and savvy that believes he can develop into one of the premier pass-rushing defensive tackles in the NFL.

In addition to being an elite run defender, Smith looks to be the disruptive weapon in the middle of the defensive line that the Cowboys have been lacking since the days of La'Roi Glover.

Paired up with , the Cowboys now possess a formidable front to defend against the run. A component of the that has let them down several times over the years.

2023 Impact: Key contributor Day 1; ability to develop into the starter by mid-season.

Dallas dips back into the Wolverines' pool to take Schoonmaker 1
Cowboys' second-round pick,

Rd 2, 58 Overall — TE Luke Schoonmaker, University of Michigan

Tight end was a position that was widely speculated to be addressed in the draft since the release of .

Much to the dismay of the fan base and some popular Cowboys analysts, Dallas chose to address this position at 58 overall. Like the Smith pick, this selection left many scratching their heads.

Notable players at higher positions of need such as left , , and were there for the taking. From an outside perspective, it appears that the early run on tight ends may have forced Dallas' hand slightly.

Afraid to get their tight end board completely wiped before their next pick in the 3rd round, 58 felt right.

In a top-heavy tight end class, four were already drafted before the Cowboys' War Room pulled the trigger on Schoonmaker.

Reach or not, Dallas got a player who they believe is better than what they currently have at the position.

Much like Mazi Smith, Will McClay & Co. believe Schoonmaker is capable of more than what he showed on tape, and his lack of elite production in college can be attributed to the offensive scheme at Michigan.

2023 Impact: Starter Day 1.

Cowboys stay home in third round, select Longhorns' Overshown 1
Cowboys' 3rd round pick,

Rd 3, 90 Overall — LB DeMarvion Overshown, University of Texas

Fans always get excited when the homegrown talent. Regardless of where DeMarvion Overshown attended high school and college, the excitement should come from the way he plays football.

“Agent 0” has the one trait that makes Dan Quinn and the rest of the salivate: Versatility.

Once Overshown converted from to linebacker, he was a three-year starter at Texas.

He displays the speed and coverage skills of a safety, with the size, frame, and hitting prowess of a linebacker.

The 5th-year senior can cover tight ends and running backs out of the backfield or run sideline to sideline in run support. He can even rush the passer, totaling 9.0 sacks in his Longhorn career.

With the guidance of NFL coaching, the sky is the limit for the Tyler, TX product.

2023 Impact: Immediate Special Teams contributor; can push for playing time in passing situations.

Cowboys draft San Jose State DE Viliami Fehoko Jr. with the 129th pick
Cowboys' 4th round pick,

Rd 4, 129 Overall — DE Viliami Fehoko, San Jose State

This pick can best be described as another Dan Quinn guy.

Viliami “Junior” Fehoko (no relation to Simi Fehoko), comes in as a raw pass rusher who is most effective using a mix of speed and power to get to the quarterback.

He is a disruptive run defender who recorded 47 tackles for loss in his college career.

Speed and power alone aren't enough to win battles in the NFL, and Fehoko struggles vs offensive tackles who have better technique.

2023 Impact: Solid training camp could earn him a spot on the roster over under-achieving veterans; he is a rotational player who needs to contribute on Special teams.

Cowboys draft North Carolina OT Asim Richards with the 169th pick
Cowboys' 5th round pick, Asim Richards

Rd 5, 169 Overall — OT Asim Richards, University of North Carolina

The Cowboys seem to have fallen in love with offensive tackles who project as guards in the NFL.

Asim Richards is strong and gets good push in the run game.

He is a who is difficult to move once he gets his hands on a defender but sometimes struggles with speed rushers.

Sound familiar?

These were some of the same things said last season to describe current Cowboys LT .

2023 Impact: Could push for the starting job at left guard, but will need to beat out , , and newly converted Tackle Josh Ball to do so.

The Dallas Cowboys 2023 Draft: How Can the Picks Impact 2023? 4

Rd 6, 178 Overall — CB Eric Scott Jr., Southern Mississippi

This young from Southern Mississippi was seemingly only on the Cowboys' radar due to a poor 40-yard dash time (4.71) at the NFL Combine.

Like the Cowboys are known to do, they had a bit of inside information on the player.

Reportedly, Eric Scott Jr. strained a quad muscle in a drill before the 40-yard dash but chose to run anyway, leading to the time that was below 31 other teams' threshold for speed.

Dallas overlooked the 40-time and instead focused on his other traits.

At 6'1″ 204lbs, he looks like the type of cornerback Dan Quinn loves to develop.

2023 Impact: ; could possibly make the roster if veterans Kelvin Joseph/Nahshon Wright don't show improvement.

Cowboys draft Kansas State RB Deuce Vaughn with 212th pick 1
Cowboys' 6th round pick, Deuce Vaughn

Rd 6, 212 Overall — RB Deuce Vaughn, Kansas State

In perhaps the best (and certainly most emotional) moment of the 2023 , Cowboys Assistant Director of College Scouting Chris Vaughn got to make the call to his own son to inform him he was being drafted by the team.

Despite his small frame, Deuce Vaughn brings a versatile skillset to an offense that will take as many playmakers as it can get.

The diminutive dasher led all FBS running backs in 2022 with 1,936 yards from scrimmage, which is impressive at any level of the game.

Tack on 43 total touchdowns over his Wildcat career, and it's apparent he has a nose for the endzone.

2023 Impact: ; limited offensive touches in special packages.

The Dallas Cowboys 2023 Draft: How Can the Picks Impact 2023? 2

Rd 7, 244 Overall — WR Jalen Brooks, South Carolina

Having not addressed Wide Receiver with any of their previous seven picks, Dallas chose to take a flier on a player with good traits.

At 6'2″ 205lbs, possesses the size and physicality that Mike McCarthy seems to have coveted in his wide receivers over the course of his coaching career.

This pick feels like a player who they are content to wait a couple of years to develop.

2023 Impact: Practice squad.

Mario Herrera Jr.
Mario Herrera Jr.
Husband. Father of 3. Cowboys fan since 1991. Stat guy, although stats don't always tell the whole story. My job is a job, but writing about the Dallas Cowboys is my passion.

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