May 4, 2012; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys third round draft pick Tyrone Crawford (70) in action during rookie mini-camp at Dallas Cowboys headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

Fan Question: What Role Will Tyrone Crawford Play For The Cowboys?

Landry Hat readers are some of the most passionate Dallas Cowboy fans on the planet. That’s why we have stocked our writing staff full of those same die-hard fans.  And in an effort to be sure we are catering to our reader’s needs, we have restarted our series of answering your fan questions. Before diving into Part Two of our expert’s opinions, let’s restate the selected reader question for this week:

May 4, 2012; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys third round draft pick Tyrone Crawford (70) in action during rookie mini-camp at Dallas Cowboys headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

Californy via the comments section asked: “What position are they projecting (Tyrone) Crawford to play at? Is he a candidate for the NT or DE position here in Dallas.  I don’t think he has the size at NT, and he may not have the speed for DE.  Do the Cowboys go to a 4-3 where Crawford would be ideal as one of the DT?”

Now here are the answers provided by the experts from our writing staff:

Todd Toombs, Senior Writer: “Tyrone Crawford is listed on the roster as a Defensive End, but he’s very light at 282 pounds to play that position on every down as your question suggests.  My guess is that the Cowboys – if he makes the team, not guaranteed – use him on special teams and as a pass rush specialist on 3rd downs while Mike Woicik tries to put some more weight on him.  Their ultimate goal would be to see him take over at DE for Marcus Spears or Kenyon Coleman at some point.  No way Rob Ryan changes his entire defensive scheme to a 4-3 to fit this guy’s skills.  Either he earns a spot in this defense and finds ways to contribute or he’ll be shopping for another team that is a better fit.  The Cowboys wouldn’t have drafted him unless they felt there was a chance they could make it work.”

Jonathan Barger, Senior Writer: “Crawford is projected to be a pass rushing 3-4 DE. He does not have the size to play NT in a 3-4, and if the Cowboys went to a 4-3, then the two inside rushers would be Ratliff and Lissemore or Ratliff and Brent. The Cowboys are going for more athletic 3-4 DE’s. I think by the end of the year the starters at DE will be Hatcher and Lissemore (taking over for Marcus Spears). The Cowboys want more from the front 5 pass rush, and they won’t be able to get that from Marcus Spears.”

Kim Dunning, Staff Writer: “I look for Crawford to play DE and be comparably like Jason Pierre Paul from the Giants.  I don’t see Dallas moving to a 4-3 defense anytime soon.”

Levi Glenn, Staff Writer:  “I expect Crawford to have a rotating role at OLB in run defense. I don’t think he will fully emerge for a few years and may be the anticipated replacement for Spencer if he don’t stay in Dallas after this season. I also believe that Ware dominates in the 3-4 scheme and he will never play in a 4-3.”

Joe Owens, Senior Writer: “With Jay Ratliff likely to begin camp on the active/PUP list the Cowboys could experiment some with moving Crawford over to nose tackle. While the talent level is the same between the rookie and veteran both are similar in size and let’s not forget Crawford wasn’t even the best defensive lineman on the Boise State team last season. In the meantime expect former 2010 7th round supplemental draft pick Josh Brent to receive the bulk of the snaps in the middle of the d-line.”

Checkout the rest of our experts answers tomorrow in part two of this article! And don’t forget, if you liked any particular answer by an expert to checkout their other stories by clicking on their names!

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