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Position battleground (rookies): Cowboys at Dolphins breakdown for draft picks/UDFAs

The Cowboys and Dolphins have both gotten some interesting play from their rookies.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Buffalo Bills Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Previously we broke down both team’s offense and defense for the upcoming game between the Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins. Now we dive back into the position battleground, this time looking at how each team’s rookie class stacks up against each other.

Dallas Cowboys

NT Mazi Smith (First Round)

Contrary to opinion from fans after the game, Smith actually didn’t play that badly last week. In fact, on run defense he was one player that did his job to a satisfactory level. The initial knee-jerk reaction from fans came due the Buffalo Bills having such a huge day on the ground after Smith had to play as the main nose tackle in Johnathan Hankins absence. Smith closed a lot of inside runs and recorded his first ever NFL sack. If you look at last week’s run success for the Bills it came on runs bounced outside, planned off-tackle runs, and a lot of missed tackles at the second level. That’s not something Smith can control. This week, he will be needed again to stop Raheem Mostert and company. Hankins will likely miss this week’s game.

Grade: B-

TE Luke Schoonmaker (Second Round)

We saw another quiet day for Schoonmaker. Once the team abandoned the run game to play catch up, that put Schoonmaker on the back burner. He didn’t play a whole lot of snaps and failed to get a single reception. Things have cooled rapidly the last few weeks for him.

Grade: C

FB Hunter Luepke (UDFA)

Luepke continues to play a major role on special teams, and last week he recorded a tackle. We should expect this to be the main focus of Luepke’s snaps for the rest of the season. But we did get to see him make one rush attempt last week where he ran for three yards. Not much negative to say on his role thus far.

Grade: B

K Brandon Aubrey (UDFA)

The weather was unfavorable last week for kicking, yet Aubrey stayed perfect and hit both the extra point and a field goal. The streak continues and the odds to stay perfect for the year now heat up.

Grade: A+

NFL: NOV 19 Cowboys at Panthers Photo by John Byrum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Miami Dolphins

CB Cam Smith (Second Round)

So far this season, Smith has watched a lot from the sidelines. He’s played only 20 defensive snaps this year, and to add to his problems, he left last week’s competition early with a hamstring injury. That leaves his availability this weekend up for question. With both Smith and Xavien Howard questionable for this weekend’s game, there is potential for a hole at outside corner on the Dolphins defense.

RB De’Von Achane (Third Round)

For most Texas A&M fans, seeing Achane run against Dallas this weekend will be slightly heartbreaking. Achane exploded in the NFL at the start of the season after rushing for 200 yards and scoring two touchdowns in one game. But his slight size was always concern when entering the draft and Achane has already missed significant time this year. Since coming back he’s been less productive, but the Cowboys defense has to account for him and his electrifying speed. He tore up the SEC with his speed and acceleration for multiple years. We will never see Achane as the featured back in the NFL, but as the second back or scat back, he had the potential to be one of the best.

OT Ryan Hayes (Seventh Round)

Hayes currently occupies a practice squad spot. He has yet to play a snap this year.

New York Jets v Miami Dolphins Photo by Brandon Sloter/Image Of Sport/Getty Images


Which team has the better set of rookies?

This poll is closed

  • 81%
    Dallas Cowboys
    (109 votes)
  • 18%
    Miami Dolphins
    (24 votes)
133 votes total Vote Now

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