Dallas Cowboys: Putting the spotlight on Patrick Surtain II

Patrick Surtain II, Alabama Crimson Tide (Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)
Patrick Surtain II, Alabama Crimson Tide (Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) /

Putting the spotlight on potential Dallas Cowboys corner Patrick Surtain II

April 29th marks day one of the 2021 NFL Draft. It is one of the most important days of the NFL year, where general managers try to find young talent to develop into stars.

Today, I want to put a focus on a potential first-round pick of the Dallas Cowboys. His name is Patrick Surtain II from Alabama.

Dallas needs to reinforce their secondary, but it is never good to draft based on need. Going for the best talent on the board is something owner Jerry Jones has often done. Look at drafting wide receiver CeeDee Lamb in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Lucky for Jerry, he can draft the best player available that happens to be in a position of need. Surtain was a consistently dominant cornerback for the Crimson Tide since his freshman season back in 2018.

Standing at six feet and two inches tall, he is an oversized athletic corner. That will help a ton when covering bigger wideouts. Don’t let that frame and 202 pounds worry you about his speed. The Florida native ran an unofficial 4.46 40-yard dash at Alabama’s Pro Day.

While the corner is not known for coming down with the ball, he surely will get his hands on it. Over his three seasons in college, his passes defended gradually increased from seven to eight to ten. On the flip side, he only has four interceptions to his name.

He has the traits of a number one cornerback. His physicality at the line-of-scrimmage gives wideouts a hard time when in press coverage. His speed and smooth movements keep him in tight coverage. Lastly, his aggressiveness and ball skills will cut the ball off from the receivers.

He should work on his catching skills to take his game to the next level. Surtain’s proficiency at everything else makes up for that, though. He can improve his hands once NFL coaches get their hands on him; even then, that won’t keep him from being a top cornerback.

He was in the conversation to win the Chuck Bednarik Award as America’s top defensive player in college football. While he was not the winner, being a finalist is still impressive.

Chemistry with current Cowboys cornerback, Trevon Diggs, will also make for a smoother transition to the NFL. The duo played together at Alabama for two years before the Cowboys drafted Diggs in the second round of the last draft.

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Patrick Surtain II has long been regarded as the best cornerback in the draft … and for good reasons. While a new name has joined the conversation, Surtain’s consistency makes him a safe pick for the Dallas Cowboys at tenth overall.