Even analytics say Patrick Surtain II is Cowboys best draft choice

Patrick Surtain II #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Patrick Surtain II #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

After losing starting cornerback Chidobe Awuzie to the Cincinnati Bengals this offseason in free agency, the Dallas Cowboys seem primed to use a high pick in the upcoming NFL Draft to address the loss. And there appear to be strong candidates.

Alabama’s Patrick Surtain II, South Carolina’s Jaycee Horn, and Virginia Tech’s Caleb Farley all appear to be potential cornerback selections for the Cowboys in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft. Dallas possesses the 10th overall pick.

While Farley appeared to be the early favorite to land in Big D according to several mock drafts, news that the young prospect needed to have back surgery recently appears to be negatively impacting his draft stock.

That seems to have boosted the chances that either Surtain or Horn will be the Cowboys’ top choice if they do decide to address their need at corner early. And according to a recent analytics-based mock draft that was published on NFL.com by NFL Network Analytics Expert Cynthia Frelund, Surtain is the best choice for the Cowboys when it comes to maximizing wins. Here’s Frelund’s explanation as to why …

"“Projected press production on third downs drives this pick, which looks like one of the best fits for any selection in this first round. According to my model, Surtain is the corner with the highest ceiling.”"

The son of Patrick Surtain Sr., who was a three-time Pro Bowl cornerback selected in the second round of the1998 draft by the Miami Dolphins, Surtain II has the potential to be more successful than his father.

NFL Media Analyst Daniel Jeremiah compared Surtain to Byron Jones, a former Pro Bowl cornerback for the Cowboys. But Jeremiah believes the young cornerback prospect out of Alabama has much better short-area quickness and ball skills than Jones, who now plays for the Dolphins.

Last season, the 6-foot-2, 202-pound Surtain recorded 37 total tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, nine pass deflections, one interception, and one defensive touchdown in 13 games as a junior.

Last year, the Cowboys drafted Surtain’s teammate out of Alabama, cornerback Trevon Diggs, with the 51st overall pick in the second round. The 22-year old Diggs ended up leading Dallas in both interceptions (3) and pass deflections (14) as an 11-game starter in his first NFL season.

Related Story. Dallas Cowboys: 3 reasons Patrick Surtain II would be a great draft grab. light

While the position of cornerback is projected by many to be the Dallas Cowboys’ biggest team need, it’s not due to a lack of bodies. The Cowboys currently have a whopping 12 players on their roster designated as either a corner or defensive back.

Those names include the aforementioned Diggs, Anthony Brown, Jourdan Lewis, Deante Burton, C.J. Goodwin, Maurice Canady, Reggie Robinson II, Saivion Smith, Chris Westry, Kemon Hall, Steven Parker, and Rashard Robinson.