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Dear Mel Kiper, Pat Watkins is a safety

Update [2006-5-4 12:51:11 by Grizz]: BTB uber-reader Deke points out that Kiper was only addressing the first two rounds when saying Dallas should've addressed the safety position. I stand corrected. I should've read the question and answer below more closely. I issue a full retraction; when I'm wrong, I admit it. Carry on.

Mel Kiper has done it twice now. The first time he said it was just after the draft, so I cut him some slack because it was a long two days and maybe he just forgot. But then he repeated it yesterday in an online chat. That's embarassing. Of course, having plastic hair that looks like a Ken Doll dressed up as Dracula on Halloween is also embarassing, and it never stopped Mel.

Ricky (Baltimore): Mel, What did you think of the Cowboys' top two choices, Carpenter and Fasano? Why spend the 2nd-round pick on a backup TE when they had needs at S and OL? Are the two O-linemeen they picked up late any good?

Mel Kiper: Fasano is a good football player and I understand why they did it, but not addressing FS is a risky move. They are very questionable there and lost games because teams went over the top on them, and they need a guy who can cover back there to complement Roy Williams. I wasn't crazy about the lack of OL help early, either.

His name is Pat Watkins, Mel. And yes, the Cowboys actually drafted him in the 5th round. Guess what, he plays FS! Lots of people think it was a steal. Like Todd McShay, who also writes for ESPN (sub. required).

Best pick: Pat Watkins, S, Florida State. Outside linebacker Bobby Carpenter (Ohio State) and tight end Anthony Fasano (Notre Dame_ were solid additions with the team's first- and second-round picks, respectively, but Watkins was a steal in Round 5. If he adjusts to the speed of the NFL and responds well to the coaching, there's good reason to believe that Watkins can eventually become an upgrade over Keith Davis as Dallas' starting free safety.

Worst pick: Jason Hatcher, DE, Grambling. Hatcher is an intriguing developmental prospect because of his size (6-foot-5 7/8, 284), but he was still a reach where the Cowboys selected him in the third round. In all reality, there was a good chance that Hatcher would have still been on the board one round later when the Cowboys selected 125th overall.

Work to do: The Cowboys were not able to address their offensive line needs until Round 7, when they used both selections on lower-tier prospects in guard Pat McQuistan (Weber State) and offensive tackle E.J. Whitley (Texas Tech). Finding an upgrade at right tackle between now and the start of the 2006 season will not be an easy mission.

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