Cowboys' Draft Playbook: 1st Round & Beyond

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Sep 22, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys fans lift a flag with the star on it in the stands before the game against the St. Louis Rams at AT&T Stadium. The Dallas Cowboys beat the St. Louis Rams 31-7.Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Sep 22, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys fans lift a flag with the star on it in the stands before the game against the St. Louis Rams at AT&T Stadium. The Dallas Cowboys beat the St. Louis Rams 31-7.Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL uselessly extended the 2014 pre-draft process an extra 2 weeks, so let’s just get right to it with limited writer’s fluff…

EVENT:  2014 NFL Draft

DETAILS:  Thurs. May 8, 2014     6PM Central     ESPN / NFL Network

COWBOYS’ SELECTION:  PICK 16 OVERALL

 

ARTICLE GUIDELINES:

1) Every ranking, evaluation, comment, and prediction is seen through the eyes of the Dallas Cowboys.

For example, it doesn’t matter that massive 331 lbs. NT Louis Nix III has 1st round talent.  His package simply does not fit to the Cowboys’ defensive scheme.

Dallas plays a specific style 4-3 defense that requires quickness, explosion, and pocket pressure from their DT’s. Nix’s 2.5 sacks over 27 college starts does not fit Dallas’ 4-3 defense in the least.  He’s a space eater and ideal 3-4 NT, not 4-3 DT.

2) National media rankings are secondary to player rankings tailored to the Cowboys.

90% of the media in general has no real idea about a player beyond stats and highlight films.  Neither are useful without MUCH more information and context.

Looking at players most so-called draft ‘experts’ expect Dallas to select, they have no clue what’s up or down at Valley Ranch.

So remember when I speak of grades and rankings going forward, this is how the Dallas Cowboys value these players as fits for their schemes.

 

On we go to the 2014 Cowboys’ War Room…

The best way to start this process is going position by position according to the Cowboys’ greatest needs.  Then listing the player rankings and realistic possibilities.

I’ll close the article with a summary 1st round cheat sheet to easily identify Cowboys’ targets and scenarios for tonight’s big event.

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Tags: 2014 NFL Draft Aaron Donald Anthony Barr Dallas Cowboys

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