Quick wrap-up of the Dallas Cowboys 2009 Draft.
Later tonight, Raf will post his breakdown on the players we drafted so be sure to come back to read that.
The Cowboys went with the "Death Match" strategy proposed in this earlier post. After drafting 12 players on the second day, training camp is going to turn into a death match between all these rookies and some veterans who have been on the edges of the roster, and possibly a couple of semi-regulars.
I won't even try to offer analysis of the skills and value of most of these picks. Many of them I haven't seen play a down of football, so I can't give them a true evaluation. I'll leave that to the draftniks. But you can get an idea of what their roles may be should they make the team and who they'll be battling in camp for roster spots.
Jason Williams, ILB, Western Illinois - This guy looks like a replacement for Kevin Burnett. Small but very active and athletic, he should battle for the nickel ILB spot. Bobby Carpenter could be in trouble.
Robert Brewster, T/G, Ball State - Played tackle but the talk is he might be better sliding inside to guard at the NFL level. He'll battle for a backup spot along the line and could replace a player like Pat McQuistan.
Stephen McGee, QB, Texas A&M - If you draft a QB when you have a confirmed starter and a competent backup, you must see something special in him. Otherwise, you can find a third QB in a lot of places and not in the fourth round. We'll see.
Victor Butler, OLB, Oregon State - With this pick and the following one, Greg Ellis is sure to be whining soon. The Cowboys had Ware, Spencer and Ellis as the options at OLB, which was dangerously thin. Now they have Butler to compete.
Brandon Williams, OLB, Texas Tech - See above.
DeAngelo Smith, CB, Cincinnati - We needed some more bodies in the secondary behind the starters. There's talk Smith could be better suited to safety. He could also end up being a punt returner on special teams.
Michael Hamlin, S, Clemson - It was no secret the Cowboys needed depth at safety, behind Ken Hamlin and Gerald Sensabaugh we had very little. Pat Watkins and Courtney Brown now have competition.
David Buehler, K, USC - Kind of a surprise, but I guess with 12 picks you can take a chance like this. Nick Folk is a money kicker on FG's, but is far below average on kickoffs. Buehler could battle Folk but more likely would have to stick as a kickoff specialists. Yes, teams do use kickoff specialists sometimes; it's not a totally nutty idea. Buehler is also a good athlete and might be able to do some other things, so that might help his cause.
Stephen Hodge, S, TCU - A big safety, he could add depth and could possibly play a hybrid S/LB position in the dime defenses. Similar to what we tried with Roy Williams.
John Phillips, TE, Virginia - It's a rule that Dallas has to draft a TE every year.
Mike Mickens, CB, Cincinnati - Huge value at corner. I have no idea why he dropped, but he was expected to go much sooner. Did the knee scare teams off? Alan Ball doesn't like this draft at all.
Manuel Johnson, WR, Oklahoma - Well, they had to draft a receiver at some point.
This draft isn't flashy and I don't see anybody here who could immediately challenge the starters for time, but two or three may be playing significant roles in rotations as nickel and dime defenders. The Cowboys also concentrated on special teams and decided they needed an infusion of new blood, especially with the departure of Keith Davis and Kevin Burnett. Some of these guys are special teams aces. Another binding characteristic - good guys, character guys.
What are your thoughts? Stick around, later Raf will have his breakdown up.