NFL Draft 2021: Dallas Cowboys select Israel Mukuamu No. 227 overall

Defensive back Israel Mukuamu #24 of the South Carolina Gamecocks (Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images)
Defensive back Israel Mukuamu #24 of the South Carolina Gamecocks (Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images) /

Heading into the sixth round of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys had made eight total picks in the first five rounds. All but two of those selections added young talent to the defensive side of the ball.

The message was clear. The Cowboys want to immediately revamp their defense that struggled in 2020. And they invested their first six draft picks in order to do so.

The newest faces in Dallas now include linebackers Micah Parsons and Jabril Cox, cornerbacks Kelvin Joseph and Nahshon Wright, and defense end Chauncey Golston. The Cowboys also drafted two offensive players in wide receiver Simi Fehoko and offensive tackle Josh Ball.

The other prospect the Cowboys added to their defense was defensive tackle Osa Odighizuwa in the third round. But he would not be the only defensive tackle to be added to the roster. With the first of their two sixth-round selections, Dallas drafted nose tackle Quinton Bohanna.

And with their second sixth-rounder, No. 227, the Cowboys added South Carolina safety Israel Mukuamu. Another defensive prospect with excellent size and length at 6-foot-4, 212-pounds, with 34-inch arms, Mukuamu can play either cornerback or safety in Dallas.

In 2019, Mukuamu recorded a combined 59 tackles, 2.0 tackles for loss, four interceptions, and a defensive touchdown in 12 games as a sophomore. He opted out midseason last year, recording only 10 tackles and two picks.

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Mukuamu success in the NFL will likely be scheme-dependent. And by landing in Dallas, there is likely no better defensive coordinator to put the lanky defensive back in the best possible position for said success than Dan Quinn, the man at the heart of the Seattle Seahawks’ Legion of Boom.