With the NFL Combine over, it’s time to take a look at some of the highs and lows as it pertains to potential Cowboys draft prospects. There were many winners and losers during the event, but today we’re going to focus specifically on players who could fall within the range of when the Cowboys pick.
Here are five risers and five fallers on the offensive side of the ball.
WR Skyy Moore, Western Michigan
If you’ve listened to the Draft Show or follow Jeff Cavanaugh on Twitter, then you know all too well who Skyy Moore is and came into the combine with high expectations. Well, the kid didn’t disappoint as he demonstrated very smooth route-running with precision breaks. His 10 and 1⁄4 vice-grip hands allowed him to catch everything. And if you had any doubts about his athleticism, that should be put to rest as he ran a 4.41 40-yard dash and jumped 135 inches on the broad jump.
What this means for the Cowboys: With a great combine, Moore may have solidified himself as a second-round pick.
We’ve already talked about the impressive showing of wide receivers Chris Olave (Ohio State), Alec Pierce (Cincinnati), and Christian Watkins (North Dakota State) has increased their draft value so if you’re interested in those players make sure to check this out.
WR Calvin Austin III, Memphis
Small guys have to do everything better at the combine to convince teams they belong in the NFL, and that is exactly what Austin III did. He not only ran a 4.32 40-yard dash, but he tore it up in both leaping tests registering a 39-inch vertical and 11’3” broad jump showing off his explosiveness.
What this means for the Cowboys: Austin could end up being a nice Day 2 toy for this Cowboys offense, and they’ve already had an informal interview with him.
OG Zion Johnson, Boston College
It’s the hat trick for Johnson! On tape, this super flexible offensive lineman is outstanding. He double-downed with a very impressive Senior Bowl against some tough interior defensive lineman. And then on Friday, Johnson shocked people with remarkable numbers. His explosiveness, balance, and strength were on full display. He had 32 reps on the bench which was the most of all offensive lineman and ran faster shuttle times than some wide receivers.
What this means for the Cowboys: Johnson should go somewhere in the vicinity of pick 24 and the Cowboys selecting him would not be a reach and immediately resolve their left guard issue.
OT Trevor Penning, Northern Iowa
We’ve already made our case as to why Penning should be the Cowboys pick at 24, but with each new day that passes, his chances of being there lessens. His combine scores were elite in almost every category showing off his great athleticism.
Come for @UNIFootball OL Trevor Penning's 4.91u...— NFL (@NFL) March 4, 2022
Stay for him squatting 625 and doing a windmill dunk. @TPenning58
: #NFLCombine on @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/nVRDve6fzX
What this means for the Cowboys: Penning could go top 15, but if he makes it to 24, he’d could end up being one of the biggest steals of the draft.
OG Cole Strange, Tennessee Chattanooga
Once believed to be a Day 3 sleeper pick because he’s a small school prospect, Strange continues to rise up the draft board. A great showing at the Senior Bowl raised some eyebrows as he’s a very controlled blocker with nice power. He’s now moved into Day 2 talk with an outstanding combine. His 5.03 40-yard dash, 1.73 10-yard split, 7.44 three-cone, 120-inch broad jump, and 31 reps on the bench were all above the 90th percentile.
What this means for the Cowboys: With center flex, Strange could be a nice Day 2 value pick, and it’s worth noting that he’s already had an informal meeting with the Cowboys.
OG Kenyon Green, Texas A&M
Green is a big guy and it wasn’t all that surprising to see him appear sluggish in the drills. His 5.24 40-time and 1.81 10-yard split were bad. He’s not an athletic player. But the disappointment came when he only could muster 20 reps on the 225 bench press, so for a guy who depends on his natural strength, that’s not a good showing.
What this means for the Cowboys: Falling to 24 is much more of a possibility now, but the question now is, will he be the best available player at that spot?
OT Daniel Faalele, Minnesota
At 384 pounds, this giant Gopher is big and has used his size to be an efficient tackle at the college level. The heaviest player at the combine in nearly 20 years, you wouldn’t expect him to move well, but you would hope that he’d show off some strength. He didn’t. With just 24 reps on the bench, Faalele tied for the fifth-worst for offensive linemen. This was disappointing considering he lacks agility so the upside of what he can offer protecting the edge becomes a giant question mark.
What this means for the Cowboys: Day 2 tackles might be hard to find and Faelele could’ve been one of those guys. That almost seems too risky now.
WR Treylon Burks, Arkansas
We don’t want to be too hard on the Razorback receiver as his 4.55 speed isn’t terrible for a guy his size. But for a player who is drawing Deebo Samuel (who was a second-round pick) comparisons, he just doesn’t display that same level of burst. Burks’ performance in the catch drills were just so-so tempering some of the hype that’s been building over the last couple months.
What this means for the Cowboys: There are going to be too many better options available at 24.
TE Jake Ferguson, Wisconsin
With only 15 reps on the bench press and an underwhelming 4.81 40 time, Ferguson did himself no favors in building a respectable athletic résumé. His bread and butter is his ability to make tough catches as he possesses nice hands with a good catch radius, but even his hands weren’t doing him any favors in the drills.
What this means for the Cowboys: If the team is targeting Ferguson, they might be able to land him in the fourth round, similar to what they did with Dalton Schultz.
RB Kyren Willliams, Notre Dame
won’t be shouldn’t be using any early-round draft capital on a running back, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t looking. With Ezekiel Elliott’s and Tony Pollard’s future in limbo after the upcoming season, it would be nice if somehow a quality back fell into their laps on Day 3. After a dismal performance at the combine, Williams could be that guy. On tape, he’s very impressive, but a 4.65 40-time was a huge blow for his draft stock. He did perform well in the field drills as his slipperiness savvy play in the passing game hasn’t gone away.
What this means for the Cowboys: The lack of breakaway speed is unsettling for Day 2, but not so much on Day 3.