You may not be aware of it, but the 2020 NFL Draft is quickly approaching. It is now less than 100 days away and drawing closer by the minute. Before you know it, it will be Draft Day and the Dallas Cowboys will be on the clock. But, who will they draft?
Unfortunately, I don’t have the answer to that question right now. Nobody does. But what I can do for you today is share some of my way-too-early “pet cats” in this year’s draft. I tried to avoid the obvious, more talked about prospects and focused more on some of the under the radar players who I like for the Dallas Cowboys.
Below I’ve identified one player from each position who I like for the Dallas Cowboys.
Cole McDonald, QB, Hawaii
I think it’s a longshot at best Cooper Rush returns as Dak Prescott‘s backup in 2020 with Mike McCarthy now calling the shots. He’s more than likely going to look for his own developmental QB and Cole McDonald is someone I believe he would love to get his hands on. McDonald has the size, athleticism, and arm strength to play at the next level, but he has an unorthodox throwing motion (similar to Philip Rivers) that needs some work. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Dallas Cowboys take a late-round flyer on him or sign him as an undrafted free agent.
Antonio Gibson, RB, Memphis
With Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard already entrenched as the Dallas Cowboys RB1 and RB2, it’s highly unlikely they use any draft capital on the position. But, using a late-round flyer isn’t out of the question. If they do, RB/WR Antonio Gibson is someone I would like for them to target. He lined up all of the place for the Tigers, much like Pollard, and could be used in much the same way with the Cowboys. He kind of reminds me a little bit of Ty Montgomery, somebody Mike McCarthy is familiar with.
Quartney Davis, WR, Texas A&M
Quartney Davis is a mid-round WR prospect I believe could come in and contribute Day 1 as a rookie for the Dallas Cowboys. He is crisp! There is little to no wasted movement to his game. His nuanced route running and footwork allows him to easily get in and out of his breaks, creating significant separation. He actually reminds me a little bit of San Francisco 49ers WR Deebo Samuel, someone the Cowboys were pretty high on last year.
Cheyenne O’Grady, TE, Arkansas
First off, you gotta love the name… Cheyenne O’Grady. It sings! His name is fascinating, but so is his game. I think he’s going to be a steal for the NFL team who takes a chance on him. He has terrific ball skills, soft hands, and turns into a beast when he gets the ball in his hands. He did have quite a few off the field issues during his time at Arkansas though. But, the Dallas Cowboys are arguably the best equipped team to get to the root of the problem. After all, Jerry Jones grandson (John Stephen Jones) was his QB last season.
Mekhi Becton, OT, Louisville
The Dallas Cowboys starting offensive tackles seem to be set with Tyron Smith and La’el Collins, but if Mike McCarthy is looking for an OT for some reason Mekhi Becton is someone I wouldn’t mind him looking at. At 6’7″, 329 pounds, Becton doesn’t look like a traditional LT in the NFL. But, he is smooth and moves a lot better than you would think for a guy his size. He has the desired length teams covet from their blindside protectors and is an absolute brawler in the run game.
Robert Hunt, IOL, Louisiana
Robert Hunt played both on the outside and on the interior of the offensive line during his time with the Ragin’ Cajuns, but projects better as an interior OL at the next level. He has a mauler mentality and doesn’t stop until the whistle blows. He effectively uses his length and power at the point of attack and has one of the nastiest mean streaks I’ve seen from anyone in the 2020 draft class. He actually reminds me a little bit of New York Giants OG Will Hernandez.
Davon Hamilton, DT, Ohio State
Nick Bosa and Chase Young highlighted Ohio State’s talented defensive front over the past few years, but they owe a lot of their success to Davon Hamilton. Hamilton (6’4″, 310) did a lot of the “dirty” work that allowed both Bosa and Young the freedom to wreak havoc and he could do the same for DeMarcus Lawrence and the Cowboys. He commanded a lot of double teams, but also made quite a few plays on the other side of the line of scrimmage. In 40 career games he notched 20 TFL and 7 QB sacks. I think he could actually have a better pro career than he did in college.
Darrell Taylor, EDGE, Tennessee
Other than Chase Young, I don’t think there is another pass rusher with the same kind of size, speed, explosiveness, and power as Darrell Taylor. Not only is he a strong run defender, but he has outstanding lower body flexibility and bend to get after opposing quarterbacks. He is also capable of playing as a DE in a 4-3 scheme or an OLB in a 3-4. Consistency and off the field problems are probably the only thing keeping him from being a first-round pick, but that could be good news for the Dallas Cowboys.
Patrick Queen, LB, LSU
The 2020 linebacker draft class is pretty weak compared to the last few years, but that doesn’t mean it’s completely void of talent and that’s good news for the Dallas Cowboys. They could use some depth and perhaps a starting caliber LB because of Leighton Vander Esch’s long-term injury concerns. That’s where Patrick Queen comes in. He has good sideline to sideline range and excellent closing speed, which was on full display in LSU’s victory over Clemson in the National Championship game, earning him an MVP alongside Joe Burrow.
Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU
Jeff Gladney (6’0″, 183) is one of my favorite cornerbacks in the 2020 draft class. I currently have him behind only Jeffrey Okudah and Kristian Fulton, meaning I would be completely fine if the Dallas Cowboys drafted him with the 17th overall pick in the first-round. I believe he can play in either a man or zone scheme depending on what Mike Nolan does as the new defensive coordinator in Dallas. This is someone the Cowboys should know all about since he is a local prospect and played just down the road at TCU. I believe they will fall in love with his ball skills and fearlessness as a tackler.
Lamar Jackson, CB/S, Nebraska
Lamar Jackson was strictly a cornerback during his time at Nebraska, but at 6’3″, 215 pounds a position switch to safety could be in order at the next level. I believe he could play a hybrid CB/S role as a rookie and would give Mike McCarthy a similar player to what he had in Micah Hyde during his time with the Green Bay Packers. I believe Jackson is physical enough to play around the line of scrimmage and has the coverage skills to play as a deep safety as well. Plus, he would give the Dallas Cowboys somebody to match up with the athletic TEs in the division (Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert, Evan Engram).