As the Cowboys begin to ramp up their draft preparations at this week’s Senior Bowl, we here at Full Press Coverage are doing the same. At the end of each month, we will conduct a Cowboys specific mock draft. The series will culminate with version 4.0 releasing on draft day.
In order to maintain some level of consistency, these mock drafts will be done using the FanSpeak On The Clock Mock Draft Simulator. The premium version will be used as to enable trading. The simulation will also use a consensus of multiple mock drafts as to try and replicate the most realistic scenario. We will only be doing four rounds until after the combine.
In version 1.0, the Cowboys found themselves in a position to take a player they may not have envisioned being there at 19.
Round 1 (19) – Derwin James – Safety – Florida State
Many draft experts had James as a top ten pick throughout the 2017 college football season. However, along with the Seminoles suffering a disappointing year, James also fell a bit short of expectations. The 6’3″ 215 lb. safety lined up all over the field for the Florida State defense. His versatility coupled with essentially a missed 2016 season, makes it very hard to get a solid read on him as a complete safety. I fully expect James to dominate the combine which should limit any potential fall to inside the top 20. With the Cowboys having recently added former Seattle defensive coordinator Kris Richard to the staff, James could give him another versatile defender in the back end to mold his new Legion of Boom.
Round 2 (50) – Michael Gallup – Wide Receiver – Colorado State
In this particular mock the second round target was guard Will Hernandez, but he went four picks prior to the Bengals. Michael Gallup is quite the consolation prize though. At 6’1″ 200 lbs, Gallup possesses the size the Cowboys desire on the outside, with just enough speed to still beat defenders deep. Much has been made of the Cowboys receiver situation of late, with Dez Bryant’s future at the forefront. Regardless if Bryant is in Dallas in 2018 or not, I still expect the team to address the position early in the draft.
Round 3 (81) – Mark Andrews – Tight End – Oklahoma
Tight end was a position of consideration in round two, with Andrews and Dallas Goedart being the top targets. Seeing Andrews still available in round three made the selection pretty easy. Jason Witten could very well be entering his final year in 2018. Rico Gathers is still surrounded by more questions than answers at this point. The Cowboys are desperately in need of more athleticism at the position, the 2017 John Mackey Award winner could provide just that.
With Dallas holding multiple compensatory picks in this year’s draft, look for Jerry Jones to move around a bit if a player they like falls. In this scenario, Dallas sends picks 16 and 36 in round four as well as the 36th pick in round five to the Saints for 27th pick in the third round.
Round 3 (91) – Josey Jewell – Linebacker – Iowa
Cowboys fans need not be reminded of what the defense looked like when Sean Lee wasn’t on the field. Anthony Hitchens did an admirable job all season across multiple spots but may have priced himself out of Dallas, as he is set to be a free agent. Jaylon Smith is getting healthier, but questions still remain if he will ever get 100% back from that devastating knee injury. If Hitchens does indeed leave, who better to replace the former Iowa linebacker with than another Hawkeye in the ultra-productive Jewell.
Round 4 (139) – Trenton Thompson – Defensive Line – Georgia
After the 2016 season, many scouts had pegged Thompson as a possible future first-round pick. However, a disappointing 2017 season for Thompson has caused his stock to drop. If Stephen Jones’ recent comments are any indication of the team’s actual plans, retaining David Irving long term may not be in the fold. If that is indeed the case, the Cowboys will obviously be looking for more talent along the defensive line.
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