The DC Times

A New Way to Look at the Cowboys, NFL, and Fantasy Football

By Jonathan Bales

Dallas Cowboys Potential 2011 Draft Pick: Jaiquawn Jarrett, FS, Temple

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Jonathan Bales

I’ve formally analyzed just one safety prospect this offseason because 1) there simply aren’t too many good ones and 2) I really think the Cowboys will sign a free safety in free agency.  When UCLA’s Rahim Moore is the consensus top-rated safety, you know it’s a weak class.

While strong safety Gerald Sensabaugh’s future in Dallas is in limbo, there’s no way free safety Alan Ball will be starting for the ‘Boys in 2011.  If the Cowboys do decide to look to the draft for his successor, I think Temple’s Jaiquawn Jarrett is a strong possibility.  In my view, he’s every bit as talented at Moore.

Scouting Report

Jaiquawn Jarrett’s size is in question.  I’ve seen him listed anywhere from 5’10”, 195 pounds to 6’2”, 210 pounds.  Quite the difference.  On tape, he appears to be closer to the latter measurements.  Jarrett is quick enough to cover slot receivers and big enough to help in run support, blitz, and cover tight ends.

On film, Jarrett appears eager to attack ball-carriers.  Although he’s a bit inconsistent in the angles he takes, Jarrett is a pretty good tackler once he gets into position.  He wraps up well and keeps his feet moving.  Check out the play he makes at the 1:16 mark below.  It’s one of the best tackles I’ve seen, well, ever.  That’s a big boy Jarrett lifts into the air.

The play Jarrett makes at the 2:29 mark also displays his willingness to make a hit.  A free safety flying up to make stick a runner in a short-yardage situation?  Yes, please.

I’m also confident that Rob Ryan will love Jarrett’s blitzing ability.  He has a ton of experience rushing the passer, which may seem like a very minor part of a free safety’s game, but not in Ryan’s scheme.  Ryan places all of his defenders all over the field, so the Cowboys need a safety who can play centerfield at times, yet come down into the box and play with the hogs in other situations.

On the negative side, Jarrett sits in his backpedal too long at times, giving up too much ground so as to not get beat deep.  You can see that at the 15-second mark when, with no one threatening him deep, Jarrett gives far too much cushion to a tight end.  The exact same thing happens at the 3:08 mark.

Nonetheless, Jarrett looks very fluid in his backpedal and displays natural hips.  His change-of-direction is outstanding, and I think he plays faster than he will time (he’s probably a mid-4.5 guy).

Projection

For the majority of the prospects I’ve studied, I’ve held a pretty strong opinion regarding their potential draft position.  For Jarrett, I really have no idea.  I really, really like his game and I think he deserves to be a second-round pick.

Will he get selected that high?  I honestly have no clue, but if he drops into the third or even fourth-round (which is certainly possible), the Cowboys need to jump all over him, even if they’ve already signed a free safety prior to the draft.

The only thing Jarrett has going against him, for me, is that it sure would be a bit*h to type “Jaiquawn” all the time.

Other Potential Dallas Cowboys Draft Picks in 2011

Nebraska CB Prince Amukamara

Cal DT/DE Cameron Jordan

UNC DE/OLB Robert Quinn

Ohio State DT/DE Cameron Heyward

Colorado OT Nate Solder

Wisconsin OT Gabe Carimi

Iowa DE Adrian Clayborn

USC OT Tyron Smith

Miami CB Brandon Harris

LSU CB Patrick Peterson

UCLA FS Rahim Moore

Baylor NT Phil Taylor

Aaron Williams, CB, Texas

Muhammad Wilkerson, DT/DE, Temple

Corey Liuget, DT/DE, Illinois

Martez Wilson, ILB/OLB, Illinois

Casey Matthews, ILB, Oregon

Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College

Mikel Leshoure, RB, Illinois

Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado

Brandon Burton, CB, Utah

Drake Nevis, DT/DE, LSU

Ben Ijalana, OT/OG, Villanova

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21 Responses to Dallas Cowboys Potential 2011 Draft Pick: Jaiquawn Jarrett, FS, Temple

  1. Rick says:

    Nice in run support, but other than 3:30, I’m not seeing it in coverage. He’s an upgrade over Ball, but so are most backups.

  2. Tyrone Jenkins says:

    LOL, this is Willis. Tyrone I got on a comp at the TCU library today and your info was here. I’ll delete it, but wanted to know if you are a student here as well?

  3. Willis says:

    I think this guy would be a good prospect…. have to love his run support. I wonder if his off the ball style in coverage is a product of his coaching, or their game plan to not get beat deep against Penn State. I think(from the limited amount I’ve seen) I like this More than MOORE(lol). I watched the hit at the 1:16 mark about ten times…..that is a Big Boy!

  4. Tyrone Jenkins says:

    LOL – Hey Willis, naw, not a TCU student (I don’t even live in N Texas – I’m in Houston).

    Maybe the system is trying to tell me I’m on here too much.

  5. ben24626 says:

    At 2:35 = WOW.

  6. Tyrone Jenkins says:

    Ya know, this is some good piece of tape – I’m glad you put this out there for everybody Jonathan. This shows what I think is an average safety.

    Look at the play at 0:20 secs into the reel – his pass coverage is lacking and he’s deep (which is usually good) but so deep that the pass is caught 3-5 yards in front of him. He’s obviously in zone but he’s guarding no one. Even if the area where the pass was caught was a LB responsibility, an elite FS recognizes the vulnerabilities (gaps) of each play as it develops. If he were to cut his back pedal short, plant and move into a position where he can make a play on the ball (bat it down or intercept), then he puts himself in a different category of player. Instincts are uncoachable – the tell the story of who’s fundamentally solid and who’s elite. By making a play on the ball, he’s certainly taking a risk and sometimes, you get burned on that risk but the reward of an INT is high. Elite safeties (Polomalu, etc.) take those risks.

    Penn State runs the EXACT same play at 3:10 in the reel w/ the same result – FS off the ball 3-5 yards – the QB fakes the play action then looks at his target the entire time w/o any sort of adjustment from the FS. Another golden opportunity missed.

    However, if you look at 3:30 time slot, he get into a backpedal, reads the QBs eyes, flows into the left 3rd of the field and makes the play. Completely instinctual.

    Now, the question is: is there more evidence to think that he will develop these instincts over the next couple of years keeping in mind limited snaps in practice (since he probably won’t be 1st team). Also, what are his other intangibles – can he play special teams? Is he a clubber/alcoholic? If you gave him an option between more playing time or more money (but he couldn’t have both) which would he pick? All those types of things weigh in for a guy like this as he’s probably a 4th to 5th round pick.

  7. Mont Seventeen says:

    I don’t see Jerry going with a rookie FS or paying the money for a quality free agent… I know Jerry likes to hype his draft picks, to justify their draft status to the media. But, in Jerry’s eyes, AOA, should be considered a sufficient back-up plan, if Rob Ryan can’t use Alan Ball.

    I agree, this draft appears weak at FS, the Cowboys may be looking at 4 or 5 new starters, Jerry finding a diamond in the rough FS, very slim…

    This is where Rob Ryan will just have to earn his keep!

  8. Crap—I am going to have to fix this problem yet guys. Sorry for the inconvenience. Good no one puts any personal info in here!

  9. Rick–Like I said, he has a lot of work to do as a centerfield-type. My grade was as he might fit into Ryan’s system, where he would be asked to do a lot of “exotic” things like blitzing, playing in the box, etc.

  10. Tyrone–That’s a really nice assessment of Jarrett. Awesome in run support, can even blitz, but needs to become more consistent in coverage (as Rick noted). A lot of the question marks you listed are things we can’t really find out…we’ll have to trust the Cowboys on the character concerns, although I think they’ve done a fine job the last five years.

  11. willis says:

    Tyrone, lol, I can see by your assesment that you might be addicted…but being addicted to the cowboys is no bad thing at all! Those are great questions btw, we have differences of opinion on players from time to time but if I was jerry I would hire you.

  12. willis says:

    JBales – are you at the combine?

  13. craig says:

    harrison, how did your lsat go?

  14. Willis–Nope! We already have our draft credentials secured though, so that should be fun.

  15. chris stallcup says:

    sooooooo the cowboys are letting sensy and spears test “free agency”…..quotes because of looming lockout haha

  16. john coleman says:

    Watching drills at the combine, I didn’t think Jarrett stood out. Harris looked good and Gilchrist showed good feet.

  17. Agreed. Gonna work on Gilchrist soon.

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