Nov 16, 2013; Starkville, MS, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs tight end Malcolm Johnson (6) advances the ball and is taken out of bounds by Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver Cyrus Jones (5) and Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (6) during the game at Davis Wade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Mock Draft: The Dallas Cowboys Select…

This week, we’ll look at the latest mock draft by withthefirstpick.com and find out what player they have linked to the Dallas Cowboys’ first round pick. After the initial picks of defensive tackle and defensive end, Peter Smith latest mock draft has the Cowboys helping their struggling backfield.

15. Dallas Cowboys - Ha’Sean Clinton-Dix, FS Alabama

“The most obvious need for the Cowboys is at defensive tackle but unless they find someone worth this pick that fits their scheme, they will have to attack another area on the defense.  One of the areas that could be a good move for them is upgrading the free safety position and trying to cut off big plays over the top with a ball hawk.  The Cowboys have a lot of issues to address on the defensive side of the ball, but Dix could make a big impact for them early.”

I’ve talked about Clinton-Dix as a possible first round draft pick for the Cowboys in my recent article Top Ten 2014 Draft Prospects For The Dallas Cowboys First Round Pick.

I’m fairly convinced the Cowboys would have selected safety Kenny Vaccaro from Texas in this year’s draft if he hadn’t already been taken by the New Orleans Saints. As we’ve all witnessed in person this season, that would have been a great pick for Dallas. It would also make sense that they would consider going that route again. If so, Clinton-Dix is the only safety in the draft with first round talent.

Currently, the Cowboys boast a defensive backfield that is the worst in franchise history. Safety Barry Church is no doubt a tackling machine, recording a team-leading 120 total tackles so far this season. But the fourth-year veteran has done little in the way of creating turnovers and possesses no coverage skills. 2013 third round selection safety J.J. Wilcox showed flashes of brilliance in the preseason, but has since underwhelmed when put into “real” action. And undrafted rookie Jeff Heath has been flat-out embarrassed several times this year. Let’s not forget second-year safety Matt Johnson, who has yet to be healthy enough to take a single snap in the regular season for the Cowboys.

Clinton-Dix would be a welcomed addition to this dreadful defense. He’s exceptional in coverage and has great ball-hawking abilities. He’s also able to cover big receivers and tight ends, which is huge in today’s oversized league. But the Cowboys have so many holes to fill, I’m not sure which one they should address first. But getting Clinton-Dix would be a good start.

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