May 10, 2013; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys center Travis Frederick (70) participates in drills with quarterback Nick Stephens (3) during rookie minicamp at Dallas Cowboys Headquarters in Irving, TX. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Travis Frederick: the Center Piece of the Cowboys O-line

The Dallas Cowboys and first-round pick Travis Frederick came to terms on Tuesday to a 4-year contract with an option for a fifth year.  No financial terms were released but sources say that it was a similar deal much like Tampa Bay’s Doug Martin, who was the 31st pick in 2012.  Martin received a guaranteed $5.5 million with the overall contract value at $6.7 million. 

With the signing of Frederick, he becomes the final draft pick signed from the 2013 draft class.  Last week, the Cowboys signed Gavin Escobar to a four-year, $4.3 million contract.  J.J. Wilcox signed inked his contract a couple of days before Escobar with a four-year, $2.8 million contract with a $586,068 signing bonus.  Terrance Williams took the time to settle his contract on June 18th with a four-year, $2.8 million contract with a signing bonus of $619,472.  B.W. Webb was one of the first signees with his four-year, $2.6 million contract with a $443,000 signing bonus on May 15th.  Running Back Joseph Randle got his contract out of the way quickly, signing a four-year contract with a $188,000 signing bonus the day before Webb.  DeVonte Holloman got the draft class signing’s going with his four-year contract with a $104,220 signing bonus on May 10th.

Frederick’s selection will be remembered as this years “Scratching of the Head” pick.  He was slated as a third round selection due to the fact that he wasn’t an overly athletic, but yet he was selected with the 31st pick in the first round.  It is my opinion that he was probably drafted so high due to Wisconsin’s ability to churn out dominant offensive lineman.  Wisconsin may produce some quality lineman such as Casey Rabach (Washington Redskins), Mark Tauscher (Green Bay Packers), and Joe Thomas (Cleveland Browns) but they didn’t produce one out of Frederick.

Frederick despite being a powerful, run-blocker needs to improve on his pass protection against speed rushers.  He has good technique and is excellent for short yardage situations.  He sustains his blocks and has strong hands plus he is durable.  He is experienced and his versatility was an attractive aspect the Cowboys liked.  Frederick does need to work on his speed and his knee bend, particularly at the center position.

Frederick does feel a need and an upgrade to the center position for the Cowboys.  Phil Costa and Ryan Cook were not getting the job done last season, so Jerry Jones felt the need to draft Frederick.  Should have he drafted him so high?  Only his play on the field will tell.

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