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Keep your eyes on Cowboys cornerback Nahshon Wright as camp draws nearer

The 99th overall pick is ready to prove that he was deserving of his selection, and that he deserves playing time in 2021.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys Minicamp Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Hoards of naysayers erupted in a collective clamor when the Dallas Cowboys announced one of their third-round selections in April’s draft. The pick: Nahshon Wright, a 22-year-old Oregon State product who was entirely unheralded to some, and who notched just one full season of division one experience under his belt due to COVID-19.

Wright’s draft projection was largely outside of the top 100 for most NFL scouts (some didn’t even haver him on their boards), and numerous executives and media members thought that Dallas reached for the young DB, listing many other players at his position whom they felt were more equipped to make an immediate impact.

Dallas disagreed, and one has to believe that Dan Quinn is a huge reason for the so called “reach.”

Wright is the quintessential cover corner to man the secondary in Quinn’s defensive scheme. Quinn employs the Cover 3 zone abundantly, and complements that look with consistent Cover 1 sets. Wright, with his 6’4 length and 78” wingspan, fits the bill for those looks perfectly. He’s a long and rangy defender who possesses the ability to cover extensive distances with ease, and make quick, decisive breaks on mid-flight passes.

His ball-skills (Wright posted two interceptions and four pass deflections in seven outings during his junior year) are already translating seamlessly as he makes the jump to shadowing big-league receivers, and his coaches are taking note.

“He’s made some plays,” Mike McCarthy said about Wright during the squad’s OTAs.

“There are some technique things, which we all are going through right now at pretty much every position. But yeah, I really like the way that he’s jumped in here.”

“He’s been aggressive, competitive. Definitely what you’re looking for in your young guys.”

For Wright, he’s making sure not to take his coach’s high praise for granted.

“It’s great knowing that he believes in my ability to play in the system. It kind of gives you that much more confidence to go out there and be yourself and just let loose. It’s definitely great to be playing under DQ.”

But the former Beaver has his sights set on what’s to come.

“I’m looking forward to (training camp), just being able to go out and showcase my talents, because I know football’s not a game of T-shirts and shorts. Being able to go out there and translate what I’ve been doing here.”

He’s predicated his play on aggressiveness up to this point, and he envisions more of the same.

“I definitely have an aggressive approach because that’s who I am as a player. That’s just kind of like my nature. So just being physical and aggressive is what I try to do.”

It’s an approach that is a treat to see for a young player: humility, combined with confidence, and of course aggressiveness.

Training camp begins July 21.

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