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Cowboys news: Versatility might be key to which WR Dallas drafts

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Cowboys HC Mike McCarthy: ‘The versatility of WR play, to me, is key.’ - Reid Hanson, Cowboys Wire

The Cowboys may be looking at receiver characteristics differently this year.

The Cowboys appear to be on the hunt for a receiver this draft cycle. Despite adding Brandin Cooks to round out their top-3, Dallas has focused much of their attention on high-end receiver prospects in the draft.

They’ve had official visits from a wide range of receivers, ranging from long and lean, to small and quick, to burners, to possession guys… they’ve looked at them all.

The diversity in their scouting has raised some eyebrows. With the exception of Ryan Switzer in 2017, the Cowboys have historically steered clear of small receivers. Something Matt Owen dove into this offseason is how Mike McCarthy has the shown the same proclivity throughout his career, rarely wading in the waters of the kiddie pool and virtually striking anyone this side of Randall Cobb (5-foot-10, 191 pounds) off the board entirely.

It seems the scouting of Flowers and Downs (5-foot-10, 182 pounds/5-foot-9, 171 pounds, respectively) runs contrary to all previous behavior of both McCarthy and the Cowboys. This could indicate a few different things: It could mean players like Flowers or Downs are smokescreens and not really under consideration. It could also mean they are exceptions to the rule. It could even mean a change of heart.

Cowboys Named ‘Best Fit’ for TE Michael Mayer - ‘The Next Witten’ - Mike Fisher,

With Dalton Schultz leaving in free agency, predictions of a tight end at #26 is a popular thing.

The Dallas Cowboys have not hidden their desire to reap the benefits of this 2023 NFL Draft being deep and talented at the position of tight end.

And to us, that - and not ”the big loss they suffered in the offseason with tight end Dalton Schultz signing a deal with the Houston Texans in free agency,’’ as ESPN suggests - is the reason a premium pick might be used at the position at the end of April.

But we’re also told that the Cowboys are searching for “their Travis Kelce,’’ in large part because as difficult as that particular sort of star is to unearth ...

And it is in that spirit that we’re buying ESPN matching up the Cowboys here and naming them the best fit for Notre Dame’s Michael Meyer.

Meyer (6-4, 250) is the top-rated tight end (and to Dane Brugler, the No. 19 overall player) in what is a high-quality 2023 class. He has led the Fighting Irish in receptions for the last two seasons and at the combine ran the 40 in 4.7 with a vertical leap of 32.5 inches. His best “comp’’ isn’t the Chiefs’ Kelce, but rather, Dallas icon Jason Witten.

Cowboys give Dak Prescott younger weapons in Mel Kiper mock draft 4.0 - Mark Lane, WFAA

Everybody seems to think Cowboys will invest in offense during the draft.

What if Dak Prescott had a couple more young targets?

That is the theme ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper went with in the fourth edition of his mock draft. The Dallas Cowboys could opt to surround their eighth-year quarterback with young passing weapons as the offense transitions from the Kellen Moore era to the definitive vision of what coach Mike McCarthy will deploy.

The first target the Cowboys take is Notre Dame tight end Michael Mayer.

“Dalton Schultz left in free agency, and the Cowboys never replaced him,” writes Kiper. “Let’s get Dak Prescott a talented safety valve here. Mayer is the best all-around tight end in this class; he’s not afraid to latch on to defenders and block. Don’t discount his receiving upside, either. He had 180 catches for 2,099 yards and 18 scores in three college seasons. He can be an outlet on crossers and hooks, and he’ll pick up first downs after the catch. Dallas also has scouted the class’ best wide receivers, so keep an eye out if one of the top guys drops.”

Kiper has the Cowboys taking Ole Miss wideout Jonathan Mingo at No. 58 overall in Round 2. The 6-foot-2-inch, 220-pound receiver would give Prescott a weapon and also security for the Cowboys going forward if they sought to move on from Michael Gallup and Brandin Cooks.

2023 NFL draft: Meet the Cowboys’ scout dad and RB prospect son - Todd Archer, ESPN

An interesting dynamic that could possibly lead to the front office drafting this player.

As the Dallas Cowboys’ assistant director of college scouting, Chris Vaughn can tell you about hundreds of players across the country as he prepares for the NFL draft. Vaughn has personally graded more than 350.

But for the one player he knows the best, he hasn’t written a report on and won’t grade.

It’s his son, Deuce, a running back out of Kansas State.

But separating being a dad from being a scout is difficult.

“I know how the draft works and I understand the process, so it will probably mimic a lot of the recruiting process [out of high school] for Deuce,” Chris said. “The elephant in the room is his size, which he has always been able to overcome with his ability.”

Deuce is 5-foot-5, 179 pounds.

“Because of that, me and him talked, and I told him, ‘Listen, man, you were super productive in college, but the draft works differently. You probably won’t be drafted where your production has been, and that’s OK,’” Chris said.

5 players the Cowboys need to avoid in the 2023 NFL Draft - Randy Gurzi, The Landry Hat

Which five players do you think that Dallas should steer clear from in this year’s draft?

After a successful offseason, the Dallas Cowboys have set themselves up nicely for the 2023 NFL Draft. They shouldn’t have to reach for any position, which is how they get themselves into trouble, allowing their board to dictate their moves.

With all that being said, here’s a look at five players that they really need to avoid adding.

5. Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia

It was recently reported that Darnell Washington has been added to the list of players meeting with Dallas ahead of the 2023 NFL Draft. At first glance, this feels like an intriguing move. Washington, who is a mountain at 6-foot-7 and 264 pounds, has all the tools to be special. He also plays one of the few positions on the team that has a starting spot up for grabs.

2. Cam Smith, CB, South Carolina

Another player who has undeniable talent but shouldn’t be on the radar for America’s Team is Cam Smith from South Carolina.

Dallas did add the most popular Gamecock defensive back in the NFL this offseason when they traded for Stephon Gilmore and they reportedly had an interest in Jaycee Horn as well when he entered the league. But this time, they should look the other way simply because there are some concerns about Smith that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Sure, teams take chances all the time but the only time it works is when the player is dedicated to being elite on the field. For Smith, that’s apparently a question for him since his work ethic is one of the things being brought up as a potential problem.

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