Dallas Cowboys 2010 Draft Pick Analysis, Grades
Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
Positives: Tremendously talented (perhaps a top five talent), incredible size and balls skills
Negatives: All issues are off-field concerns–will he be motivated to perform in the NFL? How much does he love football?
2010 Projection: Expect Bryant to begin the season as the #3 receiver and starting punt/kick returner. His return ability surely increased his value in the eyes of the Cowboys.
Pick Grade: A-
Bryant’s selection was outstanding value, even if the need wasn’t great.
Sean Lee, ILB, Penn State
Positives: One of the hardest workers you will ever meet, surprisingly athletic, great in coverage
Negatives: Slightly undersized for a 3-4 defense, coming off of 2008 knee surgery, may not have a very high ceiling
2010 Projection: Lee will likely becoming the primary backup to Bradie James and Keith Brooking. He will compete with second-year man Jason Williams for nickel linebacker duties (we are effectively ruling out Bobby Carpenter).
Pick Grade: C-
This grade would be lower but Cowboys had a high first round grade on him, meaning they really see him as an impact player. We see it as a “safe” pick with the high risk/high reward J. Williams on the roster. We also don’t understand trading up for Lee. The team basically wasted a fourth round selection that could have been utilized to secure another impact player.
Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, CB/FS, Indiana of Pennsylvania
Positives: Tremendous athelete, particularly for the safety position, great play-making and return ability
Negatives: Won’t be able to participate until training camp, inferior competition in college, didn’t play safety full-time
2010 Projection: AOA will probably begin the season as the backup free safety and return man. He would have an outside chance to start immediately if it wasn’t for his injury (had surgery on a torn labrum) and lack of experience at free safety.
Pick Grade: A
We have been hyping up AOA for literally months now and couldn’t be more thrilled with his selection. He is a second round talent at worst.
Sam Young, OT, Notre Dame
Positives: Hard worker, extensive experience in a pro-style offense (started 50 games at Notre Dame)
Negatives: Not very athletic, probably only a right tackle
2010 Projection: Young will have to fight to make the team. We think he will eventually will, but don’t expect him to beat out Robert Brewster for the backup tackle job.
Pick Grade: D+
We don’t like the selection because of Young’s limited upside. After coming out of high school as the top tackle in the nation, Young didn’t really improve much in college.
Jamar Wall, CB, Texas Tech
Positives: Very athletic, 41 inch vertical, great at reading the quarterback and making a play on the ball
Negatives: Not overly fast, gambles too much
2010 Projection: Wall will have to fight to make the 53-man roster. If he does, he will become a special-teamer and compete for the dime cornerback spot behind Orlando Scandrick.
Pick Grade: D
Again, we aren’t thrilled with this selection when there were talented players left on the board at positions of need.
Sean Lissemore, DT/DE, William & Mary
Positives: Good athleticism and speed for his size, high motor player
Negatives: Lack of competition, no experience in a 3-4
2010 Projection: Lissemore is a candidate to transition to defensive end in the Cowboys’ system, although members within the organization claimed he was “Ratliff-like.” Does this mean Lissemore will become an undersized nose tackle? We think his potential versatility will help him make the squad as a hybrid DT/DE.
Pick Grade: B-
We aren’t even going to pretend we had heard of Lissemore before the Cowboys selected him. This grade is based on what we have learned about him since he was drafted–that he is very athletic and a potentially versatile player for Wade Phillips’ defensive line.
Overall Draft Grade: B-
The selections of Bryant and Owusu-Ansah saved this draft. We aren’t thrilled with the other picks, but the top three players should be able to come in and at least contribute marginally in their rookie seasons.
Free Agent Signing Notes
Matt Nichols, QB, Eastern Washington
We have heard of multiple scouts raving about Nichols lately. Unfortunately, there is probably no room on the roster for him and he is unlikely to sneak onto the practice squad. He may just be an arm for upcoming mini-camps.
Phil Costa, C, Maryland
Costa played center and guard, meaning he could potentially take Procter’s spot.
Barry Church, S, Toledo
We are pretty surprised Church went undrafted. He is a tremendous size/speed guy, but won’t help out the ‘Boys much at free safety.
Chris Gronkowski, FB/TE, Arizona
Gronkowski version 2.0 will have a difficult time making the team. His future will be tied to Deon Anderson’s.
Lonyae Miller, RB, Fresno State
Miller is a supremely talented running back who was Ryan Mathews’ backup at Fresno State. We doubt the team will be able to sneak him on the practice squad.
Terrell Hudgins, WR, Elon
We don’t know much about Hudgins, other than he is absolutely enormous–6’1”, 237 pounds. Will Dallas attempt to convert him to an H-Back type player?
Chet Teofilo, G, California
At 329 pounds, Teofilo fits the Cowboys’ profile for an offensive lineman.
Will Barker, RT, Virgina Tech
A poor man’s Sam Young. Editor’s note: Isn’t Sam Young a poor man’s Sam Young?
Rashaun Greer, WR, Colorado State
Poor senior season, won’t make the final roster
Bryan McCann, CB, SMU
I personally had McCann listed as a potential seventh-rounder for the Cowboys. He will compete with Jamar Wall.
Overall Free Agent Grade: B