Mocking The Cowboys Draft: Hijacking MTD's Latest Mock Draft


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Our good friends and SBNation colleagues over at Mocking The Draft released their latest six-round mock draft yesterday. The thing I really like about these extended mock drafts is that they don't exist in a vacuum like single-team mocks do, where you can just pick and choose the prospects for your team irrespective of where they are slotted and what other teams would do.

Instead, because these lengthy mocks have every team making a pick, they limit the number of available candidates for your team. What I like to do when I browse through these mocks is to look at which player I would have chosen for the Cowboys instead of the player proposed in the original mock.

And that's exactly what I'll do after the break, with one simple rule: the player I choose instead of the pick proposed by MTD must be ranked lower in their mock draft than where the Cowboys are picking. Here we go.

Round

MTDs Pick

Who I'd pick instead (in this mock)

1

Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama

Melvin Ingram, OLB, South Carolina

MTD has the Cowboys selecting Janoris Jenkins with their first pick. Clearly the Cowboys need to address the secondary during both free agency and the draft, but I'm not sold on Jenkins yet. He is obviously a talented corner, but I'm not sure he'll meet the Cowboys' minimum height requirements at 5-9.
Unfortunately, in this mock exercise, most of the prospects I could envision as Cowboys picks are gone already: Quinton Coples (7th), Dre Kirkpatrick (9th) and David DeCastro (11th) are all off the board.
In this scenario, I'd be sorely tempted to trade down a few spots to gain an extra third round pick and target the likes of OLB Whitney Mercilus, OC Peter Konz or CB Chase Minnifield. Barring that, I'm taking Ingram, who is arguably the best pass rushing prospect in the draft and who'll fill the spot vacated by Anthony Spencer as the bookend to DeMarcus Ware.
2

Kelechi Osemele, OG, Iowa State

Dontari Poe, NT, Memphis

I like the idea of shoring up the offensive line with a second round pick. The Cowboys narrowly miss out on S Markelle Martin, LB Vontaze Burfict and CB Josh Norman, all of whom would have also been good second round options. But just before I finalize this pick I notice that I still have a guy with a borderline 1st round grade on the board. I think Poe is mocked way too low in this mock, so I gobble him up right away. Poe will allow Ratliff to move outside to DE and will also give the Cowboys the option of playing as many four-man fronts as they please. With my first two picks, I've arguably secured two first-round talents. But I still haven't addressed my secondary and the O-line.
3

Philip Blake, OC, Baylor

Brandon Brooks, OG, Miami (OH)

Hard to argue with this pick. I would have hoped for C Ben Jones to still be around, but in this mock the run on centers started early and both Ben Jones and Michael Brewster were taken at the bottom of the second round.
In real life, I think the Cowboys will address the center position in free agency. Unless the Cowboys draft Peter Konz, I'm pretty sure that after the experience of last season they have no intention of starting another rookie at center.
The 6-4, 353 lbs Brooks was a standout during the week of practice leading up to the Shrine Game. He has good athleticism for his size and would be an asset in the run game. However, for some reason I'm not aware of, he was not invited to the Combine. If there are issues with Brooks, or if the Cowboys prefer their guards just a little bit less heavy, Senio Kelemente at 301 lbs would also be an option here.
4

Kendall Reyes, DE, Connecticut

Brandon Taylor, SS, LSU

I'm more than set at DE now that I have Poe in the middle and have moved Ratliff outside, so I won't be looking for front seven help anymore. Taylor may need a year, but after that he'll be an upgrade over anything the Cowboys have had at safety in the last five years. If Taylor is ready to start this year, that would move Sensabaugh back to free safety, which is his more natural position anyway, and where his speed and jumping ability would be put to better use than as an in-the-box hitter.
5

Eddie Whitley, S, Virginia Tech

Cliff Harris, CB, Oregon

I don't really need a free safety, so I'm going in another direction.
I'm very tempted to take RB LaMichael James with this pick, after all, the probability is pretty low that a fifth round pick will end up being a difference maker, so I might as well draft for a flashy running back even though I don't really need one. But I'm a Jason Garrett acolyte so I'm going to try to be smart about this.
Instead, I opt for the underrated CB Cliff Harris with my fifth-round selection.
Harris could stand to gain a couple of pounds (Helllloooo Coach Woicik) and has a nasty and recurring habit of driving too fast, without a licence, and getting caught doing it. But he is a playmaker both as a returner and as a corner. And if nothing else, the Cowboys have already had a very good experience with another Cliff Harris.
He has some growing up to do both mentally and physically, but he'd be a steal in the fifth round. Watch his draft stock skyrocket after the Combine.
6

Tanner Brock, ILB, TCU

Asa Jackson, CB, Cal Poly

Brock is probably as good a pick as any in the sixth round, but I'm going in a different direction. I've decided to carpet bomb the secondary with my late round picks, hoping that I'll eventually hit on at least one starter. Jackson made Wes Bunting's list of small-school CB prospects and could be an option as a slot CB for the Cowboys.

One thing you realize in these mock draft exercises is that you can't address the O-line, the D-line, the pass rush and the secondary with your top three picks. At least one position is going to go unfilled in the first three rounds.

So there you have it. MTD vs. BTB: Who has the better draft for the Cowboys and more importantly, what would you do differently?

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