We are now just 28 days from the NFL Draft. Four weeks to go until the Cowboys and the rest of the league are on the clock in Chicago. As the team gets to the business of sharpening the draft board, we'll take a closer look at some players that Dallas should be looking at with their two fourth-round picks.
At pick 101:
Leonte Caroo, WR, Rutgers: The Cowboys are looking for a speed receiver with the ability to take the top off the defense. Caroo is not that player. What he is, is a productive possession receiver with the ability to exploit soft spots in coverage. Over his final two seasons in New Jersey, Caroo has scored a total of 20 receiving touchdowns. He is big enough to play outside at 6' 0'' tall, and his 4.50 second 40-yard time was one of the fastest by a wide out at the combine back in February. That's not really quick enough to burn past NFL secondaries, but at this point of the draft he is a player with upside.
Nick Vannett, TE, Ohio State: Another draft, another tight end prospect for the Cowboys. Dallas has been looking to find a young player to pair with future Hall of Famer Jason Witten as he nears the end of his career. The team just re-signed James Hanna, but he is more of a blocking specialist. There is still hope that Gavin Escobar may find his way in the Dallas offense, but the team should still look to add some more insurance. Vannett was under-used in Ohio State's offense but there is definitely some upside to him as a receiver. At 6' 6" and 257 lbs., Vannett runs solid routes and is a willing blocker. Tight ends coach Mike Pope is just the guy to build on Vannett's skills.
Scooby Wright III, LB, Arizona: Scooby Wright is a name that kind of sticks with you. And if he were in last year's draft there would be no chance of him being around in the fourth round. As a sophomore in 2014, Wright was a unanimous All-America and PAC-12 Defensive Player of the Year. He also won the Nagurski Trophy, the Lombardi Award, and the Bednarik Award. Unfortunately for Scooby his junior season was a bit of a disaster. He was only able to play in three games for the wildcats due to knee injury and foot sprain. Wright is not an elite athlete, but he has elite instincts and he fills up the stat sheet. If he can recapture his 2014 form, Wright would be an absolute steal at 101.
At pick 135:
Tyler Matakevich, LB, Temple: Matakevich is cut from nearly the exact same cloth as Scooby Wright. Matakevich is an absolute tackling machine. In four seasons as a starter for the Temple Owls he amassed an astounding 493 tackles, and had at least 100 tackles in each season. Matakevich is the type of player who is more than the sum of his parts. He isn't particularly big or strong or fast, but he is an unquestioned leader who studies harder, works harder, and plays harder than his opponent. Matakevich may or may not pan out as a pro, but it won't be from lack of effort.
D J White, CB, Georgia Tech: There has been a lot of talk bout how deep the 2016 draft class is at defensive tackle, but the more I look the more I see that corner might be just as deep. Here, late in the fourth round, we are looking at a player that has serious cover skills. White is a little on the small side for what teams want on the outside in recent years at 5' 11" but that certainly isn't the end of the world. White was a three-year starter for the Yellow Jackets and was a team captain as a senior. White excels in press coverage, and shows the ability to challenge receivers and stick with them in tight spaces. He is not as strong against the run, but White could be a bargain at this spot.
Jeff Driskel, QB, Louisiana Tech: Here it is folks, the time has come for me to tip my hand. This is the quarterback I really want the Cowboys to take. Driskel is a supreme athlete. He had both the fastest 40 time and the longest broad jump for quarterbacks at this year's combine. He has a strong arm and a quick release. Although he can hurt you with his legs, Driskel is comfortable in the pocket and looks to throw the ball. Driskel has issues with accuracy, especially on downfield throws, but if you are looking for a guy to learn behind Tony Romo this is exactly the kind of player you want. Driskel has had his ups and downs in his college career, but with the right guidance he could finally realize the potential that made him the top high school quarterback in the country.
There you have it. Six guys for two draft slots. Of course Dallas has many more options but time is running short to finish the scouting process before draft night. With just four short weeks to go, the Cowboys front office has a huge task in front of it. By the time the fourth round rolls around the big names will be long gone, but this is where you an find some real draft steals. Especially if you are looking for a young quarterback with upside. Just sayin'.