Iupati, Bryant, Odrick, Wilson: Who Do You Select?
It is Thursday night, April 22nd, and the Dallas Cowboys are on the clock in the 2010 NFL Draft. By some stroke of divine luck, there are four stellar players left on the board: Idaho guard Mike Iupati, Oklahoma State wide receiver Dez Bryant, Penn State DT/DE Jared Odrick, and Boise State CB Kyle Wilson.
The Cowboys have needs at all four positions, although some more than others. So, who do they select? The pros and cons of each player are listed below.
Iupati is the consensus #1 guard in this year’s draft, and the Cowboys brass are reportedly quite interested in him. Current starting LG Kyle Kosier’s contract runs out at the end of this season, so Dallas will have to make the guard position a priority in the near future.
Because of the stellar play of the guards in 2009, Iupati would be unlikely to crack the starting lineup this season without an injury ahead of him. Jerry Jones might want to secure a first round player with the ability to have an immediate impact in 2010.
There is also concern about Iupati’s inclination to hold defenders, a situation all too familiar to Cowboys fans.
Bryant is a physical freak and, in terms of pure talent, perhaps a top five player. Although we do not see wide receiver as an immediate position of need, Bryant would probably be an upgrade over Roy Williams. Combining him with Miles Austin would scare a lot of defensive coordinators.
There are a wealth of concerns over his attitude and work ethic, though, and a lot of scouts say he could drop out of the entire first round. Bryant reportedly showed up late to practice and even games.
Further, rookie receivers rarely have an enormous impact on a team, so like Iupati, Bryant’s 2010 upside could be limited compared to other players.
Odrick is a personal favorite of ours. He was a three-technique player at Penn State that would transition to the five-technique (defensive end) for Dallas. Marcus Spears, Stephen Bowen, and Jason Hatcher are all restricted free agents, so Odrick could start as early as 2011.
He also has the versatility to be the backup for Jay Ratliff at nose tackle.
Odrick got arrested last March, so there are a few character questions. He also may not get much playing time in 2010 barring an injury, and could take time to transition to a new position.
Wilson is an incredible athlete, listed as the #1 cornerback and #8 overall player on our Big Board. Wilson would come in and immediately compete with Orlando Scandrick for the nickel cornerback position. Scandrick struggled some last season, and we gave him a ‘C’ in our cornerback grades.
Wilson’s true impact, though, would come on special teams. He would be an upgrade at both the punt and kick returner spots. We listed a dominant return man as the Cowboys’ top draft need.
Scandrick is not a poor player and we expect him to improve in 2010. Remember, he played so well his rookie season that he earned the right to alternate starts in the beginning of the season with current starter Mike Jenkins. Bringing in Wilson could set back Scandrick’s progress, although you can never have too many cornerbacks.
Wilson may also have the toughest time of all these players eventually cracking the starting lineup. Iupati, Bryant, and Odrick could all be starters by 2011 at the latest, while Wilson might have to wait a little longer.
Who is the pick?
With the 27th pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys select. . . . . . . . . Kyle Wilson!
If these four players are somehow still on the board at 27, it will surely be hard for Jerry Jones to pass on Dez Bryant. Still, we see Wilson as a unique talent without the character concerns.
Dallas could also pencil Wilson in to have an immediate impact (as a returner), something they probably could not do with the other three options.