2025 NFL Mock Draft: Cowboys swing big to rectify biggest roster flaw

Where will the Cowboys focus lie in the 2025 NFL Draft?
Omarion Hampton
Omarion Hampton / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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Cowboys Round 3 Pick: Xavier Watts, S, Notre Dame

The safety position finally matters in Dallas. And that’s a big reason for their improvement over the past couple of seasons. 

Dallas showed commitment to their safeties in 2023 when Malik Hooker and Donovan Wilson were both extended. Each received multi-year deals and deserved as much. They also could put Markquese Bell back at safety after he played linebacker in 2023 and Juanyeh Thomas flashed as well when given a chance.

Despite the depth, both Wilson and Hooker are quickly approaching 30 and we saw with Jayron Kearse how quickly that can impact their athleticism. That’s why this third-round pick is used to bring in Notre Dame’s Xavier Watts.

Like Tre Harris, Watts will be an older rookie since he’s returning for his redshirt senior campaign. However, he’s played for the same team but hasn’t had a solid position.

At 5-foot-11 and 200 pounds, Watts was a natural at safety with 52 tackles and seven picks in 2023. But he’s still raw after playing wide receiver as a freshman and linebacker the past two years. Sticking at safety for one more year should help improve his draft stock, but hopefully not to the point where he won’t be a steal for Dallas — which is what he is at this spot.

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