It’s mock draft season. Every Tom, Dick, and Harry is posting their opinions on who they think each team will get in the 2022 NFL Draft, including the Dallas Cowboys. At this point in the offseason, making predictions is tough. Before the NFL Combine and before free agency, it’s difficult to know what each team may want or need. With so many opinions, not everyone can be right.
However, one particular writer from Sharp Football Analysis is statistically proven to be the most accurate mock drafter over the last five years. According to The Huddle Report, Brendan Donahue is that writer. He has a 44.8 average over the last five years. That score is determined by accumulated points. A writer gets one point if a player is predicted in the first round and two points if a player is matched to the correct team.
Donahue’s latest mock draft has the Cowboys scoring a familiar and exciting name: Nakobe Dean of the Georgia Bulldogs. Dean has made headlines all over the NCAA for his impressive talent and promising future as a linebacker. Other mock drafts in the past have had Dean going the Cowboys, but because of his prowess, some are worried that the linebacker may get snatched ahead of the 24th overall pick that Dallas currently has.
Donahue believes that “there may not be a more perfect linebacker to pair alongside” Micah Parsons than Dean. The Bulldog was the only linebacker from a Power Five school to get a PFF grade above a 90.0 in both coverage and pass rushing. The Cowboys undoubtedly are thin at the linebacker position, and adding Dean would also help Parsons be able to line up at multiple positions.
The ‘most accurate’ mock drafter, Brendan Donahue, has the Cowboys selecting Nakobe Dean in the first round of the NFL Draft
Dean and Parsons already share an award together as well. The Bulldog was the NCAA’s Butkus Award winner and Parsons was the NFL’s Butkus Award winner for 2021. The future pro also won the award as a high school player in 2018. Dean is quick and agile, as proven by the fact that he led Georgia in tackles for loss. The draftee is predicted to be a high-volume tackler.
His one downfall is that he lacks the size of other linebackers. But his other attributes like explosiveness, athleticism and blitzing-ability make up for his physical attributes. Under Dan Quinn’s guidance, he can undoubtedly become a difference-maker on the Dallas defense.
His 2021 statistics show he is ready for the pro game. He made first-team All-SEC and won SEC Defensive Player of the Year. In 13 games started, the LB amassed 14 QB hurries, 50 tackles, eight sacks, and had a 30.7 QB rating when targeted in coverage. We certainly hope that Donahue’s accuracy remains true in 2022. Scoring this player for the defense would be a huge victory.