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Will Cowboys DT Trysten Hill Be a Different Player in 2020?

Looking back on the Cowboys’ disappointing 2019 season, one has to go as far back as the NFL Draft. Last year’s edition didn’t go well for the Dallas Cowboys. Out of their eight picks, only one player was an important contributor during the season. Fourth-round pick Tony Pollard was explosive and put his talent on display frequently. More importantly, he proved he was more than just a gadget player. But even Pollard, the team’s best rookie of the year, wasn’t that important. He played for only 18% of the offensive snaps.

That’s not a knock on him, of course. After all, the Cowboys do have a top-tier running back who will eat up most of the playing time. But it goes to show how little Dallas got out of their rookie class.

But the biggest disappointment came with the team’s first selection of the year: DT Trysten Hill, from UCF.

Hill’s name was called in the second round (in case you forgot, remember the Cowboys had traded away their first-round pick for Amari Cooper) to the surprise of many. This was perceived by most as a Rod Marinelli pick and after watching Taco Charlton fail in Dallas, fans weren’t very happy.

Even still, Trysten Hill was expected to be a contributor. Instead, he played in only 11% of the defensive snaps and was a healthy scratch most of the season. In the NFL, it’s always difficult to tag a player as a “bust.” Right now, fans and analysts are leaning that way, but it might be too early in his career to do it.

A coaching overhaul in Dallas could end up helping Hill. While many praise Marinelli’s abilities to develop young defensive linemen, it’s fair to note that new DL Coach Jimmy Tomsula is also very respected in the league.

It’s worth noting that Hill’s playing time wasn’t evenly distributed throughout the season. 50% of his snaps came in the first two games he played in. After that, he didn’t get to see the field significant time.

Since taking over the Cowboys, Mike McCarthy has confirmed that the defense will remain playing with four defensive linemen. Is Trysten Hill in their plans? And if so, can Tomsula turn his career around as Kris Richard did with Byron Jones?

Tell me what you think about “Will Cowboys DT Trysten Hill Be a Different Player in 2020?” in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!

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Mauricio Rodriguez

Written by Mauricio Rodriguez

I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I've been rooting for America's team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I'm in... You'll find me at @MauNFL.


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  1. Having a new coaching staff will help. Being more nasty and fighting for jobs helps bring out the best. Speed on defense really helps. Look for Dallas to draft better Linebacker,Cornerbacks,And WR

  2. We can only hope, Hill was drafted to fit Marínelli scheme and he wasn’t able to produce. He did come with red flags but the FO ignored the warnings. What I saw was lack of strength due to playing high, the few times he was on the field he was driven back as if he was on skates but he was fighting. Hopefully with an off-season and the new coaches get something out of him. We do need him.

  3. If anybody thinks we need anything other than a DEFENSE TACKLE, first and foremost, they no nothing about this team. We need RUN STOPPING DTs!!! Look at what the Rams Gurley and the Packers Jones did to us. We were chewed up and spit out by these and other RBs. Wake up Cowboy Fans that think otherwise. Its not even a close call. Trysten Hill SUCKS for the second round, a definite terrible REACH. If anyone looked at the GAME FILMS, NOT HIGHLIGHTS, of this guy would have to agree. Rod Marinelli, who apparently pushed for this wasted pick, has not been good with draft picks, ie remember DL Joey Ivie and Jordan Carrell from 2017 Draft. OTHER WASTED PICKS!!!

    Try to move up to get the best DT on the board, Derrick Brown. If not, go get Kinlaw. Than go get a LB ( health concerns about LVE and Smith regressed). If LB Ken Murray was there in second round???, it’s a no brainer. Love this kid from Penn State, WR KJ Hamler. We need more speed and elusiveness, and Hamler would give us that. Tavon Austin appears not to be the answer there. BTW, Amari Cooper disappointed BIGTIME at critical times down the stretch.

    So DT, LB, Safety, WR. CB would be a priority only if we don’t retain Byron Jones.

  4. Lets get real, Hill was a terrible reach pick, especially in the second round and talented safeties on the board. Look at his GAME TAPE. If they can, move up and get Derrick Brown. Stop looking for and drafting these projects if we are truly a WIN NOW TEAM. If not Brown, get Kinlaw. Then LB Kenneth Murray if he is available??? in second round. THEY NEED RUN STOPPERS plus more pressure on opposing QBs. The run defense was awful and cost us games.

  5. The recent signings of Poe and McCoy are more stop-gap measures; to ensure they have adequate talent in the defensive trenches. Let’s face facts: they’re both no longer in their prime. So the Cowboys will be looking to the draft for long-term success.

  6. Hill needs to hit the weight room, adjust his attitude and accelerate his motor. During the little playing time Hill received, he was too slow to react and was blown off the ball.

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