…Not who you think it is (yet). I originally asked this question weeks ago and it’s quite possible that once rookie defensive lineman Demarcus Lawrence returns from a broken foot, he’ll be the frontrunner for this title. Given the sacrifice the Dallas Cowboys made to draft him, we all certainly hope so. For now, though, someone else burst onto the scene with the force of a blitzkrieg. The next Cowboys’ defensive star could very well be rookie safety Ahmad Dixon.
As I watched the first Cowboys’ preseason event versus the San Diego Chargers, there was plenty to scratch my head over regarding the defense. However, knowing that preseason games are tryouts and not the “let’s show the league our entire defensive playbook” show, I wasn’t too concerned (and hopefully I won’t be later). Instead, I took the opportunity to use my energy wisely. Player analysis versus the ‘Chicken Little’ syndrome that dominated Twitter. Relax, folks.
There were some definite standouts on defense, but, none like rookie S Ahmad Dixon. The 7th round draft pick out of Baylor played like his hair, arms, legs, and torso were all on fire. Ball hawk is not a sufficient adjective for what I saw. He was an absolute pterodactyl. I can’t recall a tackle that he wasn’t a part of and when he wasn’t you better believe he was in the vicinity. I was floored.
To maintain perspective (as we all know I’m a huge fan of) this was mostly a game he played versus backups. A safety having a lot of action also means there was trouble in the defensive front 7, but, it doesn’t take away from what I saw one iota. The fact is he seeks the ball. Last time I checked starters carried that same little oblong shaped object that the backups do. And the moment somebody on the opposing team touched the ball Ahmad “The Nuke” Dixon was launched.
“I thought for a guy who is young and hasn’t played that much, he seemed to show up,” head coach Jason Garrett said via SportsDFW
And when I say he was launched, I mean he took off and came down with a very audible boom. The hits he laid on ballcarriers could’ve been heard even on televisions where the sound was muted. He simply explodes into his tackles like he’s having a flashback of his lunch money being taken. At least three separate hits made me jump off of my sofa like “dear Heavens there are women and children watching!”.