We are mere days away from the official start of the 2013 League year in the NFL. March 12th will also start the normal Free Agency Frenzy which will give fans and pundits alike the chance to see a clearer picture regarding the upcoming NFL Draft. The cap this year is set at roughly $123 Million, some teams will be major players and others such as our beloved Dallas Cowboys seemingly will not. That’s not to say that the picture will remain murky but most fans know not expect big names to land in Dallas.
Stephen Jones and Company worked vigorously in the past 2 weeks to restructure contracts and sign some role players to get underneath this year’s cap. One move many didn’t expect was the release of Safety Gerald Sensabaugh and the Franchise Tagging of one Anthony Spencer. In my humble opinion, it was a very smart idea to tag Spencer. At Purdue, in a 4-3 Scheme might I add, Spencer was a force on defense. In the 3-4 Scheme it’s often preached that “there is no such thing as too many linebackers.” In a 4-3 Scheme it is said “there is no such thing as too many pass rushers.” Finding a decent amount of skilled pass rushers in The NFL can prove to be vital to the success of winning championships; just ask The New York Giants.
Sensabaugh was cut because although he was a leader in the locker room to many of the defensive backs, his play didn’t warrant his staying power. Bryan Broaddus has claimed many a time that “The Safety position has held this team hostage for years.” I echo those sentiments exactly, The Dallas Cowboys have plugged too many different types of players in that position over the years and as many know it’s been difficult to replace Darren Woodson. This year offers some resolve in a position that recently hasn’t shown very much depth. Most recently there has been an influx of rangy defensive backs coming out of college, and in this year’s Draft; The Dallas Cowboys would be wise to take a chance on one of these young Safeties. This team needs a Free Safety, not a Strong Safety but a rangy, ball-fly type of Safety that has speed necessary to cover the likes of a Victor Cruz or DeSean Jackson.
Sept 5, 2012; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Dallas Cowboys defensive back Barry Church (42) knocks the ball away from New York Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks (88) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports
After pondering my most recent Mock Draft and adding the news that is now known I have to exercise my right to change my opinion on how this year’s draft will go. After the Free Agency period it could very well change again, but at this point I believe some things have shuffled around as far as where this team may be looking to select talent. The objective of this year’s draft is going to be to find as many quality players that can have a significant impact on this year’s playoff chances. After giving my due diligence to research and many hours of video watching, I have put together a new Mock Draft. Without further ado here is the 2nd installment of my many Mock Drafts to come:
18. Chance Warmack OG Alabama– The way things are trending, Jonathan Cooper is probably gone at this point. Warmack is a natural Guard; He plays with power and is considered by many the best Guard available. He is also a mauler which bodes well for this offense. Tony Romo needs a Guard, a tackle can be grabbed later but the most important position on this offensive line needing rectification is the Guard position. Warmack excites with his intelligence of the position and ability to shut down defenders from sniffing his quarterback.
47. Jonathan Cyprien S Florida International– Although listed as a Strong Safety he has the intangibles and range to play at the Free position. Cyprien always seems to be around the ball and he never lets up on receivers. He can also play down in the slot and has good ball skills to grab the ball at its highest point. He intrigues many with physicality and fits his position well. For The Cowboys, along with a hopeful recovery from Church; Cyprien would go a long way into making the secondary a feared unit in this “passing league”.
80. Sylvester Williams DT North Carolina– His strength is his ability to create pressure for interior linemen. Williams is disruptive and has great pass rush moves. He often uses many different variations of the swim move to confuse the offensive line into believing they have him covered. Williams also has a strong burst that often leads to his ability to bust plays in the backfield. He is best fitted in my opinion to fill the 3 technique this team could use. He will need coaching to help keep him from disappearing at times but the kid has a motor.
111. Alvin Bailey OG Arkansas– May have to trade up to select this prospect but with the flux of tackles many envision being selected all is possible. Bailey has that massive size many salivate for and he was arguably the biggest reason for any offensive success Arkansas was able to generate. Bailey is fantastic at blocking on the move and could really be a force for DeMarco Murray at the 2nd level. He will need coaching on perfecting his footwork and also will need refining his re-direction skills, however if there in the 4th, Bailey is a no-brainer pick.
144. Le’Veon Bell HB Michigan State- This prospect is a potential slider in my opinion, with the other needs of many teams in the NFL; as well as the long list of free agents set to hit the market. He is very hard to bring down. He has the ability to be the workhorse back that can stay grounded; even after he has initial contact. DeMarco Murray is the man in Dallas, but Bell could help in case Murray was to be missing a couple of games. He has acceleration that often puts defenders off balance.
175. David Bass DE Missouri Western State– Great first step quickness and natural burst. Bass is often described as a positive influence on and off the field. He plays very fundamentally sound football with good vertical and lateral movements. This Defensive End has a knack to find the ball carrier and make the tackle. Bass also has a competitive drive which motivates his enormous motor. He needs refinement to his pass rush moves and hand technique, but could be a contributor in many different areas.
Only one player from my previous mock made the cut to the 2nd one. This time of year often makes people fickle and ready to pull the trigger at any moment. The Safety position has become a bigger influence on many including myself since Monday. This current Mock offers the most impact players in key positions; However with Free Agency on the horizon, anything is possible and nothing is safe from change.