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Cowboys Draft Talk: There Are Guards Other Than DeCastro

The Cowboys have been linked to David DeCastro all offseason. There are other guards in the draft not named David DeCastro that should interest the Cowboys.
The Cowboys have been linked to David DeCastro all offseason. There are other guards in the draft not named David DeCastro that should interest the Cowboys.

Stanford offensive guard David DeCastro is one of the popular picks for the Dallas Cowboys in mock drafts across the nation. The Cowboys fan base absolutely loves the idea of drafting DeCastro. He is one of the safest picks in this year's draft class and one of the few blue chip prospects available. If he is available when the Cowboys go on the clock with the 14th overall pick, it would be a home run selection.

There is a possibility that he could be gone before the Cowboys pick. Guards typically don't go in the top fifteen anymore. Mike Iupati was the last guard to go high in the first round and the Cowboys were in love with him, willing to trade up for his services.

If DeCastro is gone before the 14th pick, it wouldn't be the end of the world. The sky won't come crashing down to the ground and it won't be all doom and gloom. Like wide receiver and cornerback, the guard position appears to be a pretty deep class. The talent at the guard position will be there in the later rounds. This is why we shouldn't break our remote if DeCastro is snatched up before the Cowboys have a chance to draft him.

Take the jump for guards not named David DeCastro...

Brandon Brooks

A couple of months ago, I wrote a FanPost about the guard from Miami of Ohio. I didn't place him on my recent big board, but he isn't far behind the 50 mark. As of right now I would say he is around the 52-55 range. Brooks is one of the best offensive lineman in this draft. Even though he doesn't come from the SEC or Big 10, his pedigree is on par with the caliber of lineman from those conferences.

If there was one prospect who got robbed this year when not receiving a NFL Combine invite, it was Brooks. The NFL Combine committee does a fantastic job of evaluating talent to invite to workout there, but this is the one case where they totally overlooked a fantastic NFL prospect. Many were disappointed that he was snubbed and wouldn't be working out there.

No worries, all he did was show up to his pro day and put on a show.

  • 6-5, 346
  • 32 5/8 inch arms
  • 4.98 40 yard dash
  • 4.58 20 yard shuttle
  • 7.42 three-cone drill
  • 36 reps of 225 pounds

Donatri Poe stole the show at the combine, but if Brooks put up this type of performance at the combine, he would have been the most talked about offensive lineman. This is a massive guard at 6-5 and 346 pounds, so usually you don't expect larger guards to be very athletic. He has the perfect combination of size, strength and athleticism that will make him a very intriguing prospect in the NFL.

Typically there are two different skill sets at offensive guard. There is the more physical "mauler" type whose strength is key in winning battles on the line. Then there is the more athletic type of guard who relies on athleticism to pull on run plays and get down the field. At first look, Brooks looks like the more physical guard, which he is. But he is more than athletic enough to be effective pulling and trapping in the NFL.

Before his pro day, I considered him to be a third- or fourth-round draft pick. After blowing up his pro day, it isn't unrealistic to believe Brooks could sneak into the second round. Even though the Cowboys have invested money into two free agent guards, they should still be looking at adding another guard in the draft. He could come in and be an instant starter for them. Adding Brooks to our already improved offensive line would make them more balanced and talented.

Amini Silatolu

This is the one prospect that I have been behind on. It's extremely hard to get game tape or any footage on small school prospects. Once I got my hands on some footage of Silatolu, it really impressed me. Wes Bunting has been pushing him for the past few months and I have finally caught on.

This YouTube video is the only tape I have seen on him. You will notice that he is playing in Cowboys stadium, so maybe that is a sign of things to come. The level of competition he faced is a concern, but he is knocking people around during the entire video. You will enjoy watching him, so check the video out. Once he gets his hands on the defensive lineman, it's a wrap.

He had a very good combine performance.

  • 6-4, 311
  • 33 inch arms
  • 5.43 40 yard dash
  • 28 reps of 225 pounds
  • 31.5 inch vertical jump
  • 107 inch broad jump
  • 7.95 three-cone drill
  • 4.87 20 yard shuttle

One thing the Cowboys like to do is take offensive tackles from college and move them inside to guard. It's just something their scouting department tends to look at when evaluating college lineman. Silatolu played left tackle for Midwestern State, but he won't be a left tackle in the NFL. His skill set translates to moving inside at guard where he can use his strength and athleticism.

I love feisty offensive lineman and so do the Cowboys. One of the reasons they drafted David Arkin last year was because of the way he played through the whistle, finishing plays. Silatolu does the same thing and has a mean streak that I want to see on the Cowboys offensive line again. Continuing to add lineman with a mean streak will improve our chances of succeeding in short yardage. It also doesn't hurt to have an added swagger on the line.

There is a chance he could sneak into the second round, but it is most likely that he will be a third-round pick. The Cowboys can get a starting caliber guard with Silatolu. Unlike Brooks who is more polished, Silatolu will take more time to get onto the field. With proper NFL coaching he can improve his technique and see the field soon enough. His upside is through the roof, so he is worth the early draft pick.

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