With the 26th pick in the 2023 NFL draft, the Dallas Cowboys select defensive tackle Mazi Smith.
Welcome to Dallas, @mazismith! ⭐️— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) April 28, 2023
: The @NFLDraft : April 27-29 on @nflnetwork, @ABC& @espn pic.twitter.com/39eAYkdCR6
Making major moves right up the middle @mazismith | @UMichFootball#CowboysDraft | @MillerLite | #ItsMillerTime pic.twitter.com/RFjfiqkSZ6— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) April 28, 2023
With the No. 26 overall pick in the 2023 @NFLDraft, the @dallascowboys select Mazi Smith!@neweracap | #DallasCowboys— NFL (@NFL) April 28, 2023
: 2023 #NFLDraft on NFLN/ESPN/ABC
: Stream on NFL+ https://t.co/D3EqkrKdIw pic.twitter.com/3e6Ao9k81B
Lone Star State bound!@mazismith is the newest member of the @dallascowboys and that now marks five straight years with a Wolverine selected in the first round of the #NFLDraft!#ProBlue 〽️ pic.twitter.com/nbQUPsCWNj— Michigan Football (@UMichFootball) April 28, 2023
Dallas adds some strength in the trenches selecting Mazi Smith with the 26th overall pick #NFLDraft pic.twitter.com/STWEh9VrwV— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) April 28, 2023
The pick was somewhat of a surprise as hardly any mock had Smith to Dallas. So how did some of the analysts feel about Mazi Smith getting his name called?
Your newest Dallas Cowboy: DT Mazi Smith— Kyle Youmans (@Kyle_Youmans) April 28, 2023
The best run-stopper in college football last season will be a part of Dan Quinn's defense! #DallasCowboys
Cowboys FINALLY invest in DT with Mazi Smith.— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) April 28, 2023
I believe @MoveTheSticks put Mazi Smith on the Cowboys' radar a month or maybe even longer ago.— David Helman (@davidhelman_) April 28, 2023
The goal is that he's going to shore up the run defense & make life a lot easier on Micah Parsons & DeMarcus Lawrence.
And it’s their highest defensive player on their board apparently…DT Masi Smith. Fascinating— Jane Slater (@SlaterNFL) April 28, 2023
If new Cowboys NT Mazi Smith becomes the player they believe he can be, he gives this defense exactly what it needed. A disruptive 0-technique has been the missing piece.— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) April 28, 2023
Comparing Mazi Smith to Taco Charlton is big weirdo vibes. Watch the film, please.— Patrik [No C] Walker (@VoiceOfTheStar) April 28, 2023
WE FINALLT TOOK A DT HIGH. AM I DREAMING— John Owning (@JohnOwning) April 28, 2023
Big boi presence in the middle was a definite necessity, I just really wanted @dallascowboys to get a LG before addressing the DT position. I understand he's a beast at Run Stopping though. Which is what Dallas needs. Bravo— isaiah stanback (@IamSTANBACK) April 28, 2023
Some of his new fellow teammates on the Cowboys made their feelings known.
Mazi!!!! Let’s go !! Man let’s freaking work!!!!!!— Micah Parsons (@MicahhParsons11) April 28, 2023
Welcome to the trenches young blood Mazi Smith.— DeMarcus Lawrence (@TankLawrence) April 28, 2023
Yes sir big DT !!!!!!!!!!!!!— Israel Mukuamu (@IsraelMukuamu) April 28, 2023
One analyst was impressed.
The Cowboys just got a guy in Mazi Smith who can be the anchor to their defense for years to come. In an NFL where defenses need to stop the run with a light box, Smith was DOMINANT against the run at Michigan and will move the pocket in the passing game.— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) April 28, 2023
Some very interesting points to note on the new Cowboys defensive tackle.
Dallas selects Michigan DT Mazi Smith 26th overall— PFF College (@PFF_College) April 28, 2023
Career high 81.3 run defense grade last season pic.twitter.com/uDlyaGpyEb
What #Cowboys fans can expect from Mazi Smith pic.twitter.com/0qMjj9PPCB— The 33rd Team (@The33rdTeamFB) April 28, 2023
Aye @MicahhParsons11, Mazi Smith looks ready to get active— NFL on CBS (@NFLonCBS) April 28, 2023
The @dallascowboys select the @UMichFootball DT at No. 26 overall.pic.twitter.com/31pAGR76CK
Despite his low sack total (0.5 is indeed a low total), Mazi Smith tied teammate Mike Morris for a team-high 16 hits on opposing quarterbacks. #Cowboys— Mike Tanier (@MikeTanier) April 28, 2023
Here is how Michigan NT Mazi Smith compares to other Round 1 nose tackles: pic.twitter.com/bPqedmjHtk— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) March 22, 2023
Get a full scouting report on the #DallasCowboys first round pick, defensive tackle Mazi Smith. ↓#CowboysDraft | @MillerLite— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) April 28, 2023
LOOK AT THIS GROWN MAN!!!— Hailey Sutton (@_HaileySutton) April 28, 2023
Mazi Smith is the first defensive tackle taken by the Cowboys in the first round since they selected Russell Maryland as the number 1 overall pick back in 1991.
I'd like to argue he's one of the strongest too - that's 800 lbs! (video: Bruce Feldman) pic.twitter.com/HQXZ50Tkkd
Finally our fellow BTB staff members give their takes.
In Dan Quinn we trust.— Jess Nevarez (@JessNevarez_) April 28, 2023
Welcome home DT Mazi Smith ⭐️#DallasCowboys #CowboysNation pic.twitter.com/kqjYJw85H2— Brandon Loree (@Brandoniswrite) April 28, 2023
New Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Mazi Smith. https://t.co/DEc6RsoT2N— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) April 28, 2023
This is my sentiment. I know the player has skill and his abilities can really help this team but tough for me to pass up on JPJ and Nolan Smith. https://t.co/ak5bICMfuu— Tony Catalina (@Tony_Catalina) April 28, 2023
I don't hate the Mazi Smith pick, but am not in love. I totally understand the logic behind it. It is a need, he is a run-stopper, we were ranked 29th in the league in run defense. But the fun starts now, am more interested in day 2!— (@IAmPStew) April 28, 2023
I love the idea of Mazi Smith with Osa Odighizuwa with a sprinkling of Chauncey Golston. Time to stop the run and that’s what the Cowboys have gone out to do.— Mike Poland (@kenfigkowboy) April 28, 2023
People afraid of offensive line need not addressed or tight end, there’s still plenty of them left on the board for Day 2…
With the Dallas Cowboys taking time during the offseason in the free agency period to fill needs and weaknesses, the run defense still needed work. With the inside defensive tackle position not being as deep as other positions in the draft that are on the Cowboys radar, the pick made good sense to make early leaving Day 2 open to fill at positions with more depth.