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Cowboys draft 2023: Re-capping Dallas’ third day of the draft

The Dallas Cowboys address needs, make a trade, and draft an electric running back on day three of the 2023 NFL draft.

Allstate Sugar Bowl - Alabama v Kansas State Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Pick No. 129: Viliami Fehoko, DE - San Jose State

Dan Quinn continued to have his presence felt in the war room, after the Cowboys spent their first pick on Saturday on the defensive side of the ball. The team decided to draft defensive end Viliami Fehoko with the 129th pick in the draft. Fehoko had a stellar 2022 season at San Jose State, winning the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year award. He led the conference with 19.0 tackles for loss, had 69 total tackles, and had a career-high 9.0 sacks. had this to say for their overview of Fehoko as a prospect:

Fehoko’s body type will require teams to decide whether they want him to play base end in a 4-3 defense or ask him to add weight so they can use him as a hybrid end/tackle in a 3-4. He plays with a nose for the football and a chippy attitude. He’s been productive in both phases over the last two seasons, but we will see if that translates against better competition. While he’s not as anchor-based as teams might like due to his lack of leverage, he has a nasty spin counter that could be effective as a sub-package rusher. He’s strong, tough and active with the talent to become an NFL backup.

Pick No. 169: Asim Richards, OT - North Carolina

The Cowboys used the 169th pick to select their first offensive lineman in this year’s draft, which is considered a surprise by many. The team came into this draft with some questions regarding the offensive line depth, specifically, the interior offensive line depth. The front office decided to go with OT Asim Richards, a 6’4, 309 lb tackle who excelled at pass protection last year at the University of North Carolina. In 1,049 snaps at left tackle throughout the 2022 season, Richards allowed just three sacks.

Cowboys offensive line coach Mike Solari discussed his excitement with the pick on the Dallas Cowboys draft show on their website:

“He’s an ascending player. He’s young. Really excited about this addition.” Cowboys view him as a guard/tackle option. He’s a smart young man. He wouldn’t have trouble moving left to right.”

Pick No. 178: Eric Scott Jr. , CB - Southern Miss

The Dallas Cowboys made their only trade of the 2023 draft when they traded a 2024 fifth-round pick to the Kansas City Chiefs for the the first pick of the sixth round. They surprised many people when they selected CB Eric Scott Jr. from Southern Miss. While some people could consider it a reach, it is worth noting that Scott Jr. had a top-30 visit with the Dallas Cowboys.

Scott Jr’s physical traits are excellent at the cornerback position, and could be a project guy for Dan Quinn’s defense. He also could provide an immediate impact for special teams.

Pick No. 212: Deuce Vaughn, RB - Kansas State

In what was arguably one of the most emotional moments of this year’s draft, the Dallas Cowboys drafted Kansas State RB Deuce Vaughn with the 212th pick in the draft. His father, Chris Vaughn, who is a Dallas Cowboys scout, had the privilege of calling his son to tell him that he was drafted to the team.

From a football standpoint, Vaughn is an electric running back. With his 5’5” height, he instantly draws comparisons to NFL-great Darren Sproles. Don’t let his height fool you, Vaughn carved up some of the best defenses in college football last season. In 2022 he had 1,558 rushing yards and nine rushing touchdowns on just 293 carries.

Vaughn looks to provide a spark to the Cowboys offense this upcoming season by complementing starting RB Tony Pollard. Vaughn can produce in both the run game and the receiving game, and has rare burst and change of direction that can impact the Cowboys immediately.

Pick No. 244: Jalen Brooks, WR - South Carolina

The Cowboys spent their final pick in the draft by adding a wide receiver to help Dak Prescott. South Carolina’s Jalen Brooks provides an ability to come down with 50/50 balls that can be very useful in Dallas’ offense.

Brooks had 33 receptions, 504 receiving yards, and two touchdowns in 2022, his best season at South Carolina.

2023 Dallas Cowboys Draft Class

1: DT Mazi Smith, Michigan

2: TE Luke Schoonmaker, Michigan

3: LB DeMarvion Overshown, Texas

4: DE Junior Fehoko, San Jose State

5: OT Asim Richards, North Carolina

6: CB Eric Scott Jr., Southern Miss

6: RB Deuce Vaughn, Kansas State

7: WR Jalen Brooks, South Carolina

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