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The Dallas Cowboys may have too many holes to fill this time. Normally the club works to fill the gaps during free agency, but they’ve left a glaring need at both offensive guard and wide receiver with the defection of Connor Williams and Cedrick Wilson and the trading of Amari Cooper. It’s hard to stray away from those needs when doing 2022 mock drafts, because not addressing them early in favor of other positions makes things harder down the line.
Not impossible, mind you, but harder. The team could still go any direction with their first pick and then get a guard and wide receiver on Day 2, but that causes a couple of issues. Even with trading back to acquire more picks, or moving around to ensure grabbing certain guys, it’s hard to envision the Cowboys getting impact players or future starters for every position of need. In addition to the two already mentioned, offensive tackle, defensive end, tight end, run-stuffing DT, safety, linebacker, center, even running back and corner could use infusions for various reasons.
In this latest mock, an attempt was made to follow the Cowboys 10 Draft Commandments and address as many needs as possible. A first-round trade back netted an extra selection, then the myriad of fifth-round picks were used to move up in a couple places to secure targets. Even with all this, a position was left behind.
TRADE: Send 1.24 to Kansas City for 1.29, 3.103, 7.233
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
1.29: Kenyon Green, OG, Texas A&M
Sep 18, 2021; College Station, Texas, USA; Texas A&M Aggies offensive lineman Kenyon Green (55) in action during the game between the Texas A&M Aggies and the New Mexico Lobos at Kyle Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
It’s hard to envision the Cowboys going somewhere other than offensive lineman in the first round based on their 30 draft visits. In this scenario Green stays in Texas and is the immediate LG and potential starting tackle once things change in future seasons. He should be an upgrade to Williams by the end of his first season (rookie wall withstanding), and has Pro Bowl potential after that.
He’ll succeed Zack Martin as Dallas’ best OL one day.
Green is one of the Cowboys 30 official visitors.
TRADE: Send 2.56, 5.178 to New England for 2.54
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
2.54: WR George Pickens, Georgia
Georgia Bulldogs wide receiver George Pickens (1) makes a diving catch while being guarded by Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Kool-Aid McKinstry (1) on Monday, Jan. 10, 2022, during the College Football Playoff National Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Many outlets and services expect Pickens to fall because he missed most of the season. Dallas should do backflips if he gets in range and here we jumped Arizona for his services. Pickens is a No. 1 receiver and getting him in house for the final three years of Lamb’s rookie deal (including fifth-year option) would be a coup.
Besides, he’s already returned to the field to end the 2021 season, which means he should be close to fully returned to peak performance by September.
3.88: TE Jeremy Ruckert, Ohio State
Ohio State Buckeyes tight end Jeremy Ruckert (88) scores a touchdown during the NCAA football game at Memorial Stadium in Bloomington, Ind. on Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021. Ohio State won 54-7.
Ohio State Buckeyes At Indiana Hoosiers
The Cowboys have to get more talent in the TE room and Ruckert seems like a perfect fit. Underused at Ohio State, Ruckert is an excellent blocker already and has the physical tools to be a receiving threat at the pro level. With Schultz playing under the tag, a Ruckert selection could be a compliment or heir apparent.
Ruckert is one of the club’s official visitors.
3.103: Center Cam Jurgens, Nebraska
Nebraska offensive lineman Cam Jurgens runs a drill during the NFL football scouting combine, Friday, March 4, 2022, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
There was improvement out of Tyler Biadasz but Jurgens seems to have a higher ceiling there. He’ll at the least protect Dallas in case Biadasz doesn’t take the Year 3 jump and has the position flex to be helpful elsewhere until a starting opportunity arrives.
Jurgens is one of the Cowboys’ 30 official visitors.
TRADE: Send 4.129, 5.155, 2023 sixth to Las Vegas for 4.126, 5.165
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
4.126: Edge Isaiah Thomas, Oklahoma
Oct 30, 2021; Norman, Oklahoma, USA; Oklahoma Sooners defensive lineman Isaiah Thomas (95) causes Texas Tech Red Raiders quarterback Donovan Smith (7) to fumble during the second half at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
The Cowboys conducted a private workout for Thomas.
TRADE: Send 5.165, 6.193, 7.233 to Jacksonville for 5.157, 6.198
Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
5.157: OL Josh Ezeudu, North Carolina
Mar 4, 2022; Indianapolis, IN, USA; North Carolina offensive lineman Joshua Ezeudu (OL14) runs the 40-yard dash during the 2022 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
If the idea is that Green could eventually move out to tackle, then Ezeudu is necessary to be the guy that would move into the guard spot in Year 3 or 4. In the meantime, he’s a versatile backup linemen that helps churn that group with young talent.
Ezeudu is one of Dallas’ 30 official pre-draft visitors.
5.167: RB Hassan Haskins, Michigan
Michigan running back Hassan Haskins takes the field for warmups before the Orange Bowl against Georgia on Friday, Dec. 31, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Florida.
Haskins is a big boy who is more than adept at churning out the tough yards. He has more tread on his tires than other prospects, so he’ll need to be part of a share with a speedier, shifty back, but he definitely has the wiggle necessary to play a major role.
Haskins had a virtual visit with the Cowboys.
5.176: Safety Markquese Bell, Florida A&M
FAMU safety Markquese Bell (5) celebrates a sack during the Orange Blossom Classic between Florida A&M University and Jackson State University at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens Sunday, Sept. 5, 2021.
Orange Blossom Classic 090521 Ts 877
A big recruit at Maryland, transferred to JUCO and then Florida A&M where he became their top defender.
6.198: Nose tackle Neil Farrell, LSU
Jan 13, 2020; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; LSU Tigers defensive end Neil Farrell Jr. (92) against the Clemson Tigers in the College Football Playoff national championship game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
If he slides this far, pair him with Quinton Bohanna and have a true big-boy rotation on early downs.