By: Greg Rector
Christmas is in December, right? I always thought so too, then the first-ever virtual NFL Draft happened, and well April 23rd, 24th, and 25th came along and the Dallas Cowboys got presents all three days. Wasn’t it a pleasure not seeing Schefter, and the other clowns tweet out draft picks before they were announced? Personally give me this version of the draft every year.
First-round- Pick 17
The first gift of the draft was HUGE. Oklahoma wide receiver, regarded by almost every draft expert out there as the best in a very deep draft class fell to the Cowboys after the Raiders went to burner Henry Ruggs III, and the Broncos went with Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb had to be taken by Dallas. No way could you pass on him and possibly see Lamb end up with the Eagles. His overall game is a scary thought to try and defend against. What receiver are you going to try and double now against Dallas? Cooper has already proven he can beat double coverage, Gallup? He’s a burner and not easily covered, Lamb? Are you going to give him that much respect as a rookie? Good luck with that NFL defenses.
Second Round- Pick 51
As Friday night proceeded the picks in front of Dallas unfolded and there were surprises by several teams, this leads to another guy who was never supposed to be available at 51. Trevon Diggs, Cornerback from Alabama was sitting there for the second straight present. After losing Byron Jones, Corner certainly was a need for the Cowboys. Dallas fans were giddy when Diggs was drafted because he combines excellent coverage skills with something not seen with Jones, interceptions. So the 1% chance of Diggs actually happened. At that point, I was already declaring this the best draft for Dallas since 2005.
Third Round- Pick 84
The gifts just kept coming after teams like the Eagles drafted Jalen Hurts, and other teams seemed to reach a little ahead of the Cowboys pick. If you read my mocks, you know I really wanted Javon Kinlaw at 17, well that didn’t happen, however, the Cowboys again got someone who was supposed to be long gone at 84 in Neville Gallimore DT From Oklahoma as well. A very nice consolation prize and addresses the future of the interior defensive line that I had as a huge need, while most were focused on the Edge position instead. Sorry, I want to win the interior trench war. Gallimore developed nicely in his time with the Sooners and improved in one key area each season, tackles for loss. Getting into the backfield right up the middle is a huge factor in having an elite defense. He can learn from Poe and McCoy, two excellent mentors.
Round Four- Pick 123
Coach McCarthy had a huge hand in this pick, Corner Reggie Robinson II from Tulsa. McCarthy after watching Robinson’s tapes was astounded he wasn’t being mentioned with other corners expected to go much higher in the draft. I have to agree with that view and certainly agree with Robinson’s self-evaluation that he’s “an in your face,” cornerback.
Don’t ask me how the Cowboys swung a trade with the rival Eagles, they did just that to get the last pick of the 4th round. Center became a need with the retirement of Travis Frederick, so once the deal was made, the Cowboys selected Tyler Biadasz from Wisconsin. The Rimington Award winner for the 2019 season, you know the guy voted as the best center in college football. Another player who wasn’t supposed to be there. Added bonus Cowboys Nation? He’s idolized, Frederick. Now he might not be ready to be a full-time starter week one, however, he has the tools to develop into an excellent center in the years to come. 6’3″ 315 lbs and since he went to a school that produces a lot of NFL lineman, Biadasz will be in Dallas for many years.
Round 5- Pick 179
Remember my Mock 2.0? I had the Cowboys drafting Edge/LB Bradlee Anae from Utah. Guess what he was still there in round five!!! Another Xmas gift that the Cowboys unwrapped. 30 sacks in his college career. He won’t be the typical speed rusher off the edge and I actually believe he will see plenty more snaps at LB instead of the edge early on (yes that means less of Sean Lee) Anae is a very versatile player, and as I said in my mock draft that’s what Nolan wants. It’s also going to be far more of a rule than an exception to see multi-positional players, Anae and Isiah Simmons are those types.
Round 7 – Pick 231
QB Ben DiNucci- James Madison
Competition for Cooper Rush as the backup. If you didn’t see any Division One football last year, well DiNucci led the Dukes to the title game, where they lost to an absolute powerhouse North Dakota State Bison team. DiNucci has a good arm but like most rookies, he needs fine-tuning technically and is likely headed to the practice squad.
How good was the work of the Cowboys scouting staff? The draft ends and the frenzy of undrafted free agent signings begin. The Cowboys signed 7 of 11 players they had on their draft board.
Overall the consensus is the Cowboys had a huge draft weekend. I certainly agree they get an A+ grade from me.
Bonus News: Twitter finally restored my big account!!!!
You can find me once again @GregCowboys