Just over 60 days until the 2016 NFL Draft will begin, but the discussions of the many prospects has been heating up even before the Super Bowl. The Cowboys will have some high collateral as they will be picking at the beginning of each round, which could potentially land them three talents in the top 100 prospects.
In Mockery III, we decided that trading back was just not an option as we need talent on this roster fast. So for this exercise, we will hold back the urge to stack more picks and just happily stick with what we have. The Cowboys have nine picks that can certainly start filling out the roster for 2016 with some fresh talent. Without further adieu, let's draft!
Round 1 (4th Overall): Jalen Ramsey, CB, Florida State, (CBS 3rd Overall)
Analysis: It's no secret that the Cowboys have some issues in their secondary. From Brandon Carr's large contract to Morris Claiborne's impending free agency, the Cowboys need help at cornerback. Ramsey has the skillset of a corner, safety and linebacker combined. It's something similar to what Darren Woodson provided this team many moons ago. The Cowboys took Byron Jones last season and played him all over but his likely landing spot is going to be at free safety. Bringing in someone with the coverage skills of Ramsey, opens up a whole new world of potential in their secondary.
If Ramsey makes it past the Chargers, the Cowboys have to look his way. This is a player that haves no off-switch, he's a competitor and has a tremendous knowledge of how to play on defense. He just makes play after play with impeccable awareness. He could be asked to line up anywhere in the secondary and it will become significantly better by his presence. It has been a long while since the Cowboys had a player of this caliber, but pairing Ramsey with Jones and Orlando Scandrick would inch this defense closer to elite status. The Cowboys have likened themselves in the past to what Seattle is doing, bringing in an athlete like Ramsey is cooking with the right oil.
Round 2 (34th Overall): Josh Doctson, WR, TCU, (CBS 40th)
Analysis: This is a name that many of you Big 12 fans are used to, but Cowboys fans need to get familiar with him too. Nick Eatman, of the Mothership, has said several times on 'The Break' that the Cowboys really are intrigued by Doctson. He's one of those guys that is likely to check every measurable on the SPARQ system. He's a tremendous athlete with the size of an NFL wideout. TCU does run a spread offense and often times that means receivers need a little help with route running. However, like Cole Beasley, Doctson just knows how to be open and ready. His leap and catch ability is off the charts and he was outstanding for the Horned Frogs.
He's got good speed and agility with stick hands and a large catch radius. The Cowboys showed last season that any unfortunate circumstance to Dez Bryant can have this unit looking pretty porous overall. The Cowboys have a chance here to add a quality receiver with the production to match 2,785 receiving yards (TCU record), including a game where he had 267 receiving yards (TCU record). This is a player that will add another wrinkle to the Cowboys' offense and will be a nightmare alongside Bryant, Beasley and Terrance Williams.
Round 3 (67th): Adolphus Washington, DT, Ohio State, (CBS 57th)
Analysis: A holdover from Mockery II, Washington has the talent of a second-round player in this draft but is a bit undeveloped. This leads to the Austin Johnson's and Vernon Butler's of the world jumping him in draft status. However, at the beginning of the third round, this one is a no-brainer. Who better to take Washington's natural athletic talents and help him reach his potential than Marinelli?
Washington is a long and limber defender for his size. He knows how to disrupt the pocket from either tackle position. He's got a good burst off the ball but needs to work on converting that with power through the point of attack. Washington is as skilled a defensive tackle as they come, but could use a really good position coach to realize that and create the finished product.
Round 4 (102nd): Ronald Blair, DE, Appalachian State, (CBS 145th)
Analysis: The Cowboys are in rebuilding mode on the defensive line and this is a class that lacks the longevity at pass rusher. If Blair is still there at the top of the fourth round which is where CBS ranks him, it's a no-brainer. Blair is excellent at the point of attack and was a dominant player for the Sun Belt Conference. He led in tackles for loss (18) and was second in sacks with 7.5. Perhaps his greatest performance came on the biggest stage against number one Clemson. In that game, Blair had eight tackles, two sacks, and two tackles for a loss.
He's a refined pass rusher with the violence you want at the position. He practically lives in the backfield and has the elite first-step quickness that Marinelli craves. Putting him alongside DeMarcus Lawrence, Randy Gregory, and a veteran presence will only make him better. For a team that needs some depth, Blair would be that and a potential starter down the road.
Round 4 (137th): Antonio Morrison, ILB, Florida, (CBS 135th)
Analysis: If not for a scary knee injury in the 2014 bowl game, Morrison would be a lot higher on many folks draft boards. The Cowboys are looking for intelligent linebackers that play integral roles for them and Morrison has all those traits and more. It's no question that he plays with a ton of intensity, sometimes a little too much. However, Morrison can be explosive as a middle linebacker. For what he lacks in prototypical size, he makes up for with intelligence and an extreme feel for the game.
He'll have to go through some extensive medical checks after returning from a 10-12 month injury in just six. However, Brugler has gone as far as to state that if Morrison is healthy, we're looking at a top 40 prospect. Morrison led the Gators with 97 tackles, 56 for loss, and a forced fumble. He also was named to the 2015 All-SEC Second Team.
Round 6 (192nd): Aaron Green, RB, TCU, (CBS 176th)
Analysis: This is a Senior Bowl pick here after the Cowboys were able to get a long look at the back out of Fort Worth. He certainly could be invited to Dallas Day in the coming weeks. Green is a very balanced athlete with video-game like cuts that make him an intriguing change of pace option. He's got the natural run instincts but needs to learn to follow his blocks instead of creating his own. Green is a very speedy guy that once he's in space, forget about it. He's willing to stand in and block in pass protection and isn't bad at it either. Green has a lot of development still left to do and will need to learn to trust his vision, but in the sixth round, his talent is too good to pass up.
Round 6 (212th): Jordan Lucas, S, Penn State, (CBS 210th)
Analysis: Another holdover from Mockery II but also a pet cat of mine. What's intriguing about Lucas was that he was a converted wide receiver and has shown some excellent ball skills for his position. He's got slick footwork and can glide across the field to mirror receivers.
Lucas is a bit of a thumper but unlike some we know, he's not going to take insane angles that leave him susceptible to be punished. He does well by keeping his eyes on the quarterback and loves himself some downhill contact. He's got the foundation to be a good safety but will certainly need work in key areas to keep improving. As far as the Cowboys are concerned, they have a lot of names, but no real depth at the position. Lucas can provide depth but also shows the traits that you look for in later rounds to build upon.
Round 6 (216th): Travis Feeney, OLB, Washington, (CBS 227th)
Analysis: Interestingly enough, Feeney played a position that the Huskies refer to as the Buck. It's similar to a Sam linebacker but involves a little more rushing the passer and coverage duties. Due to his impressive speed and size (6'4, 225 lbs), Feeney was perhaps the best overall athlete the Huskies had. He's impressive to watch because there isn't a lot of guys his size with that speed to close in and make the tackle. There some concerns with Feeney who has undergone four shoulder procedures. However, he's a fanatastic athlete and will likely test very well at his Pro Day. Feeney has got to learn that the "big hit" isn't everything and can get him in trouble. Somebody is going to develop this kid into a really good player in the NFL. Why not let that be the Cowboys?
Round 6 (217th): Jeff Driskel, QB, Louisiana Tech, (CBS 284th)
Analysis: He escaped many people's minds after his flame out at Florida, but Brugler stated there was no better leader at the Senior Bowl than Driskel. He knows how to take command of the huddle and get players on board with his fiery personality. He's a legitimate quarterback contender at the NFL leader though most folks are focused on other names. At LA Tech, Driskel was outstanding and even made Honorable Mention to the All-Conference USA team. He's well-built for the position and has an innate ability to throw the deep ball and be accurate. He's got the arm, but folks wonder about his shotgun-heavy offense. However, Driskel can make all the throws with good trajectory and shows an ability to sense danger and get out of it. He's a competitor and has a true passion for the game which will get him a gig in the NFL.