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Cowboys 2021 mock draft roundup: One name returns to dominate the mocks

If the Cowboys go corner in the draft, this could be the name they choose.

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NCAA Football: Virginia Tech at Miami Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

We’re back with our weekly Dallas Cowboys mock draft roundup for the 2021 draft. This is our first roundup post-Super Bowl where all 32 teams are now in official offseason mode. Some years there isn’t a real consensus on who the Cowboys might draft. This year is not one of those years.

In our weekly mock draft roundups, the same names keep appearing; that will tend to happen when you pick near the top of the round. But out of those names, one particular player is dominating the mocks for the Cowboys at pick #10.

That guy is Caleb Farley, cornerback out of Virginia Tech. The Cowboys defense certainly needs help, and with Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis entering free agency, cornerback becomes a position of need. That has brought Farley and Patrick Surtain, the consensus top two corners in the draft, into the Cowboys’ orbit in many mocks. Five out of ten of our mocks have Farley as the pick.

Todd McShay, ESPN

10. Dallas Cowboys

Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech

Big D needs help on D. Last year’s second-rounder, Trevon Diggs, looks like a solid find for the Cowboys, but that secondary is still problematic — especially now that Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis could be headed elsewhere in free agency. The Cowboys allowed 34 passing touchdowns this season, tied for the third-most in the NFL. Farley (another opt-out) is a ball hawk who could turn some of those TD passes into interceptions.

Dalton Johnson, NBC Sports

10. Dallas Cowboys: Caleb Farley, CB

Farley and Surtain will fight for which cornerback is taken off the board first. Surtain is the more polished prospect right now but Farley probably is the better athlete.

When he arrived at Virginia Tech, that’s exactly what he was — a great athlete. He converted from receiver to cornerback and has turned into what looks like a lockdown corner. Dallas’ defense was atrocious this season. Go get Farley. —DJ

Michael Renner, PFF

10. Dallas Cowboys: CB Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech

The Cowboys could reunite the Alabama duo of Trevon Diggs and Patrick Surtain II, but it would give Dallas one of the slowest starting corner tandems in the league. Farley has the best physical tools of any corner in the class and only allowed a passer rating of 26.8 on throws into his coverage in 2019.

Eric Edholm, Yahoo Sports

10. Dallas Cowboys

Virginia Tech CB Caleb Farley

Farley’s lack of experience at corner, with only two full seasons at the position, could be a concern for some teams considering taking him in the top 10. But he’s a high-ceiling talent who is just scratching the surface of his potential after playing high-school quarterback and spending his redshirt season in Blacksburg as a wide receiver.

The Cowboys can use help on all three levels of the defense and can start at corner, where they had a top four last season of Trevon Diggs, Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis and Anthony Brown. Farley and Diggs would give them two big outside corners with press-coverage ability, something new coordinator Dan Quinn could use in his cover-3 system.

Brent Sobleski, Bleacher Report

10. Dallas Cowboys: CB Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech

The Dallas Cowboys secondary could be depleted by free agency since Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, C.J. Goodwin and Xavier Woods aren’t under contract. Even if the Cowboys attempt to re-sign their defensive backs, upgrades are necessary.

While Dallas’ run defense certainly needs more work than the secondary, the entire unit struggled throughout the season. In this particular case, the interior defense class is rather weak. Instead, the Cowboys can concentrate on a premium position.

Cornerback Caleb Farley opted out of the 2020 campaign, but he still holds a slight advantage over SEC Defensive Player of the Year Patrick Surtain II based on his outstanding physical tools.

Both are big and long corners, but the 6’2”, 207-pound Virginia Tech product was clocked as one of the fastest players in college football during the 2019 season, per The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman.

Farley is a physical freak and could certainly fit into Dan Quinn’s plans for the future of the Cowboys defense. Paring him up with Trevon Diggs would give the Cowboys a couple of young corners who would have the possibility of being cornerstones of the defense for the next decade.

One mock had Farley already gone, so the consolation prize was Patrick Surtain out of Alabama.

Matt Williamson, Pro Football Network

10. Dallas Cowboys: Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama

Let’s assume that Dallas gets a contract worked out with Dak Prescott. Sure, they could use an offensive lineman like Rashawn Slater. Still, this draft should really be about the defense for Big D. Patrick Surtain would be an extremely welcome addition to the Cowboys’ secondary.

Surtain would pair up with his former Alabama teammate Diggs for an SEC-flavored secondary.

If corner is not your thing, the fallback position for the mockers seems to be offensive tackle. There is certainly solid reasoning behind a pick at OT. If the Cowboys go in that direction, Rashawn Slater seems to be the guy.

Walter Football

Dallas Cowboys: Rashawn Slater, OT/G/C, Northwestern

The Cowboys can’t trust Tyron Smith anymore. He’s been injured far too often over the past few years. The defense must be addressed, but protecting Dak Prescott is most important.

Rashawn Slater can play every position on the offensive line. He some great tape against Chase Young.

Josh Edwards, CBS Sports

Round 1 - Pick 10

Rashawn Slater OL

Northwestern • Jr • 6’3” / 305 lbs

The offensive line was a weakness for Dallas in 2020. The return of healthy players could alter their fate but it would be wise to take zero risks considering the health and safety of Dak Prescott is at hand. Rashawn Slater could fill a variety of roles for the Cowboys offensive line.

Slater isn’t usually the top offensive tackle off the board in most mocks, that honor goes to Penei Sewell. And every so often, you have a mock with Sewell sliding all the way to pick #10.

Chris Trapasso, CBS Sports

Round 1 - Pick 10

Penei Sewell OL

Oregon • Jr • 6’6” / 330 lbs

There’s growing thought Sewell could be on the board this “late” in Round 1, and the Cowboys would be smart to add him to their offensive front given its collective age and all the injury history.

And finally, there is always the old reliable of adding a pass rusher. That’s a position that could always use more talent, and the one name that pops up more than others for the Cowboys, if they go that direction, is Gregory Rousseau.

Chad Rueter, NFL.com

Pick 10

Dallas Cowboys

Gregory Rousseau · Edge rusher

School: Miami | Year: Sophomore (RS)

Rousseau is just scratching the surface of his potential. His strength and length on the edge will help him become a force that the Cowboys could definitely use if soon-to-be free agents Tyrone Crawford and Aldon Smith get new addresses this spring.

We’ll have to see how long this consensus holds for the Cowboys. Cornerback is definitely the dominant need according to most mocks, but could that change in free agency? What if the Cowboys went out and got some help at corner, what should their next position of need be? Is it offensive tackle?

Stay tuned.