There was a point in time where the second round was one where the Dallas Cowboys got a little bit adventurous. For some time, the Cowboys treated the second round, a spot where you can find true starters, as a lottery machine of sorts. When you look back at the second-round picks over the last decade or so, there have definitely been some ups and downs.
- 2010: Sean Lee
- 2011: Bruce Carter
- 2012: (traded)
- 2013: Gavin Escobar
- 2014: DeMarcus Lawrence
- 2015: Randy Gregory
- 2016: Jaylon Smith
- 2017: Chidobe Awuzie
- 2018: Connor Williams
- 2019: Trysten Hill
Looking at this list there is no question that DeMarcus Lawrence is the best product in the here and now. Obviously Sean Lee has had a nice career with the Cowboys, and to be fair, Jaylon Smith has gotten a second contract with the team, but names like Gavin Escobar certainly make one grimace.
The Cowboys added a new name to this list on Friday night with Alabama cornerback Trevon Diggs. Considering who Diggs is as a prospect in the here and now, he is likely the highest-rated second-round pick that the Cowboys have made in recent memory.
Trevon Diggs falling to 51 seemed improbable
The Cowboys said in their post-draft press conference that they calculated there to be a 1% chance that Trevon Diggs would be available when they were on the clock at 51 overall. They did note that they considered trading up, perhaps because they thought it was so unlikely that Diggs would fall that far, but obviously stayed put.
When you consider all of the second-round picks that the Cowboys have had recently, is Diggs not the one with the fewest question marks? The list noted above features players that had injury issues (Sean Lee), suspensions in college (DeMarcus Lawrence), red flags entering the NFL (Randy Gregory), or in the case of Jaylon Smith, an incredible roll-of-the-dice from a medical perspective.
When the Cowboys drafted Chidobe Awuzie there were many people that felt like he could have gone in the first round, so perhaps that is the closest comparison to the way we are evaluating Diggs currently. Connor Williams was thought of somewhat highly, but Trysten Hill was not exactly a welcome pick by most fans.
By most measurements, Trevon Diggs is the third-, at worst, fourth-rated cornerback in the class. Considering that cornerback was such a huge need for the Cowboys, the fact that they were able to be a little gutsy about waiting until 51 to get one, while netting CeeDee Lamb in the process mind you, is fairly impressive.
Trevon Diggs has a lot to his game that should be valued, and he’s obviously coming from a high-profile place in the University of Alabama. He is as blue-chip of a prospect as you can get in the second round and perhaps that’s what the Cowboys want to target in that round now as opposed to players they think could be a bit of a bargain.
That’s nice to see.