Where yesterday saw the offensive explosion but defense ultimately winning the day; it was all about defense in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. It's definitely nerve-wracking as a Cowboys' fan to watch a lot of defensive backs fly off the board. Right off the bat, the Packer started it off with Kevin King, the cornerback that most Cowboys' fans will compare careers with Taco Charlton forever. The Cardinals traded up and selected Budda Baker, the Washington safety that is an awful lot like the "Honey Badger", Tyrann Mathieu. The Jets flew in and scooped up safety, Marcus Maye, that's two safeties with Jamal Adams in the first round for those counting at home. A few picks later, those drunkards from New Orleans grabbed Cowboys' favorite Marcus Williams from Utah.
The Eagles did a masterful job at not helping themselves and sparing us of Joe Mixon, they selected Sidney Jones, the IR bound cornerback from Washington. The Colts then selected Quincy Wilson, the cornerback out of Florida followed by the Ravens who got a steal in Tyus Bowser at 47th overall. Another few Cowboys favorites went right off the board too with Justin Evans to the Buccaneers (another missed tackler to pair with J.J. Wilcox), Teez Tabor went to join the Detroit Lions, and the Raiders grabbed the ultra-athletic Obi Melifonwu. That's nine defensive backs off the board before we even get to what we're here for, the Cowboys' pick at 60:
The Cowboys select Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Colorado
First, let's give a huge hand to the legendary Cowboys' receiver, Drew Pearson. Pearson went out there in a sea of boos and trolled every Eagles' fan in Philly. He stood in there and delivered one of my favorite cornerbacks in the draft.
Where he fits: This is a starting cornerback for the Dallas Cowboys and though he's under six feet, he's got athleticism and a football IQ that makes him an obvious Jason Garrett style of player. Dallas has needs in the secondary but more than anything else they need a playmaker. Awuzie is an aggressive tackler with 4.43 speed and he claims he's a baller. Bottom line, with receivers like Odell Beckham, Sterling Shepard, Josh Doctson and others in this league, you need corners and then some.
Production: Awuzie doesn't have the interception numbers but the guy has 39 passes defensed over his career. He's also the best blitzing cornerback in the draft with 26 tackles for a loss and 9 sacks. He was the best player in a standout secondary for the Colorado Buffaloes.
Value: Awuzie is a tough competitor with supreme confidence. He's Dane Brugler's 4th-best cornerback, 27th overall player. He's SPARQ's fifth-best cornerback with a 137.9 score and 97.7 percentile. Rob Rang says he's a lockdown corner who deserves much more respect than he's given. There is versatility with this player as he's played some safety and well if I might add.
Conclusion: This is one of my pet cats who is just a nasty competitor. He does need to improve his tackling form but he is one of the most fluid athletes being able to stick to his man but have the awareness to play in zone. The combination of size and speed in a cornerback like this is very intriguing to add to this squad. Your Cowboys’ defense got a lot better on the back end with this pick.
Interesting tidbit: The Cowboys are shopping around Orlando Scandrick and they're asking for a third-round selection currently. Source: Bryan Broaddus & 105.3 The Fan.
We'll be back with the Cowboys' third-round selection or if any news breaks...