Dallas Cowboys Four Round Mock Draft: Retooling The Defense

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Round Three, Pick # 82 overall- Ben Jones, C, Georgia

Nov 26, 2011; Atlanta, GA, USA; Georgia Bulldogs center Ben Jones (60) prepares to snap the ball during the second half of the game against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Georgia defeated Georgia Tech 31-17. Mandatory Credit: Josh D. Weiss-US PRESSWIRE

If I see one more snap fly over Tony Romo’s head I swear ill rip out what’s left of my hair!  Ben Jones has been considered one of the best centers in college for the past 2 years.  Playing in the SEC against premier NFL prospects, that’s quite an achievement.  Jones is an underrated prospect here; he is strong and smart.  The Cowboys need badly to find a career center and have been working hard towards a youth movement.  Any offensive lineman will tell you that the key to success is consistency.  Our lineman need to feel comfortable with each other, so there isn’t time to give Costa or Kowalski another go.

Strengths: Displays excellent “Pop” against opposing lineman.  Finds good center of gravity and sticks to it all game; hardly ever found on the ground.  Athletic enough to effectively block at second level. Hard worker who has a great competitive attitude.  Great awareness.  Smart.

Weakness: Isn’t a physical specimen.  Not overly athletic or powerful.  Considered a short-armed center that might also serve as a guard.  Will struggle against more dominant tackles.

Fit: Ben Jones is a great grinder; he works hard and does his job.  He knows how to play injured and doesn’t ever complain.  He is smart and can make all calls on the line.  I have my doubts about his ability to dominate but I’d almost put my paycheck on the fact that he’ll be a starting center/swing guard in the NFL for his career.  The Cowboys badly need a player like Jones.  With the emergence of Smith and Free they aren’t far away from building something good and Jones is a smart addition.

Round Four, Pick #113 overall- Leonard Johnson, CB, Iowa State

Jerry Jones bought a new Carr this offseason…right? Ok, I’m sick of the Carr references too but the point is they filled this huge void this offseason.  That being said cornerback is still a significant need because of the lack of depth.  Ball and Walker are gone, thank God, and Johnson offers tremendous value here.

Strengths: Physical beast; looks big plays bigger.  Drives on the ball quickly and balances aggressive tendencies well.  Good eyes and smart in coverage.  Not afraid to play the run.  Has ability to match up with any receiver without being consistently beaten.

Weakness: 5’9, 196 lbs isn’t ideal size.  Not a blazer runs 4.5-4.6 40-yard dash times.  Will need extra help learning defensive assignments

Fit: Johnson is a nasty player who plays with confidence and attitude.  Though he won’t ever be a starter for the Cowboys, he would be a solid 4th cornerback in sub packages.  I believe the Cowboys are happy moving forward with their top 3 cornerbacks and Johnson will fill the exact role they’ll want from him.  I also think that Johnson could be an impacting ST player ala Keith Davis

Obviously, this draft could go so many different ways.  This is a just a look at how I see this turning out.  The Cowboys could do a lot with what they have but defense has to be a priority.  So what do you guys think? Where did I miss? What did I hit on? Who do you guys see the Cowboys taking?

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Tags: 2012 NFL Draft 2012 NFL Mock Draft Dallas Cowboys Mark Barron

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