The Dallas Cowboys were the best team in the NFC during the regular season, but came up in the NFC Divisional playoffs. In that loss to the Green Bay Packers a couple issues presented themselves, particularly on the defensive side of the ball.
With that in mind, here’s our seven-round 2017 NFL mock draft for the Cowboys prior to this weekend’s Senior Bowl.
Pick No. 28: Taco Charlton (DE, Michigan)
The Cowboys need to develop their pass rush. In a season where a lot went right, the inability to get to the quarterback may have been their biggest flaw, and it’s a more glaring need after Randy Gregory was suspended for all of next season. That’s where Charlton comes into play, and could be a bit of a no-brainer at No. 28. Just imagine him teaming up with David Irving, all of a sudden a position of weakness could become a strength.
Pick No. 60: Haason Reddick (DE/LB, Temple)
Reddick is having a strong week at the senior bowl and has practiced at both defensive end and linebacker. Reddick is the type of player that could be used in specific pass rushing situations, but still has the ability to make open-field plays. As stated earlier, the Cowboys need to bolster the pass rush, so let’s grab multiple options.
Pick No. 92: Jourdan Lewis (DB, Michigan)
The Cowboys need to focus on defense in the draft, and Charlton’s Michigan teammate can help improve the secondary. Lewis’ college career did come with some minor injury issues, but his ability to break up passes and cover receivers one-on-one are desperately needed in Dallas.
Pick No. 132: Fred Ross (WR, Mississippi State)
The Cowboys have spoken with Dak Prescott’s former teammate a couple times at the Senior Bowl, and they like his ability to add depth to their receivers core. The Cowboys are looking for depth and Prescott and Ross already had good chemistry.
Pick No. 212: Xavier Coleman (DB, Portland State)
The Cowboys don’t have a fifth-round pick this year, so in the sixth round you continue to focus on the defense and snag another corner back. Coleman had a stellar senior season, and while he played FCS football, the Cowboys don’t have any qualms with taking a sixth-round flier on a speed defensive back like Coleman.
Pick No. 231: Trayvon Hester (DT, Toledo)
The Cowboys have a pair of seventh-round picks and this is where they load up on a couple project players. Hester was the centerpiece of one of the run defenses in the MAC this year, and the Cowboys have a history of dipping into Toledo’s roster after picking Barry Church.
Pick No. 249: Jon Heck (OT, North Carolina)
The Cowboys need young cheaper talent to provide depth on the offensive line. Heck is a project pick like Hester, but could develop into a nice long-term player while working with the Cowboys talented offensive line every day in practice.