As we approach the most anticipated day of the offseason for many NFL fans, each team’s draft focus begins to become a bit clearer. The bulk of free agency is now over and reports of official prospect visits and workouts are beginning to roll in. Using this information as a guide, I’ve assembled a list of some of the top options for the Cowboys based on where they are selecting in each round. As always feel free to let me know what you think in the comments or on Twitter @Tigga11.

Round 1 – Pick #28

Draft
Nov 19, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies defensive back Kevin King (20) intercepts a pass intended for Arizona State Sun Devils wide receiver N’Keal Harry (1) during the second quarter at Husky Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Takkarist McKinley – DE/EDGE UCLA
  2. Kevin King – DB – Washington
  3. Cordrea Tankersley – CB – Clemson
  4. T.J. Watt – EDGE – Wisconsin
  5. Jabrill Peppers – S/LB – Michigan

I have been banging the Takk drum for awhile, and I see no reason to stop now. His recent surgery could keep him on the sideline until September or he may be ready sometime during the preseason, the medical recheck will be key. But he certainly does not fit the “redshirt type” player Jerry Jones was alluding the club would avoid earlier this week. Peppers is the only one of these five that Dallas has yet to show significant pre draft interest in, as Watt, King, Tankersley and the aforementioned McKinley all have scheduled visits or met with Dallas in recent weeks. However with a defense needing upgrades all over the field, Peppers’ versatility could prove intriguing.

Round 2 – Pick #60 Overall

Sep 27, 2014; East Hartford, CT, USA; Connecticut Huskies safety Obi Melifonwu (20) celebrates against the Temple Owls during the first half at Rentschler Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Tarell Basham – EDGE – Ohio
  2. Derek Rivers – EDGE – Youngstown St.
  3. Marcus Williams – S – Utah
  4. Obi Melifonwu – S – UCONN
  5. Ahkello Witherspoon – CB – Colorado

It is no secret the Cowboys will be looking to address the defense early and often this draft. Out of these five prospects, Dallas has shown the most interest in Basham and Melifonwu to date, having scheduled workouts/visits with both. Marcus Williams possess the ability to get his hands on the football and create turnovers out of the the back end that Stephen Jones has been on record saying is an area they want to improve upon. Witherspoon is a big corner at 6’2″ coupled with his 4.4 40 time and he checks many of the measurable boxes that Dallas desires.


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Round 3 – Pick #92 Overall

Jake Butt
Nov 29, 2014; Columbus, OH, USA; Michigan Wolverines tight end Jake Butt (88) celebrates after scoring against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sport
  1. Rasul Douglas – CB – West Virginia
  2. Jake Butt – TE – Michigan
  3. Amara Darboh – WR – Michigan
  4. Justin Evans – S – Texas A&M
  5. DeMarcus Walker – DL – Florida State

I truly believe the Cowboys are going to put an emphasis on creating more turnovers this season and Rasul Douglas led the nation in interceptions last season. Our first two offensive players on the list show up in the form of two Michigan products. Jake Butt is ahead of schedule in his rehab coming off ACL surgery and Darboh had some contact with Dallas at the combine. DeMarcus Walker is an interesting prospect as he really doesn’t have a defined position along the defensive line. However he finds a way to get the quarterback, among the nation’s leaders in sacks at Florida State.

Round 4 – Pick #133 Overall

Nov 19, 2016; Lawrence, KS, USA; Texas Longhorns running back D’Onta Foreman (33) jumps over Kansas Jayhawks linebacker Mike Lee (11) at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary Rohman-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Jalen Myrick – CB – Minnesota
  2. Shaquill Griffin – CB – UCF
  3. D’onta Foreman – RB – Texas
  4. Eddie Jackson – S – Alabama
  5. Mack Collins – WR – UNC

The fourth round list starts off with a pair of speedsters that Dallas has shown significant interest in during the pre draft process. Both Myrick (4.28) and Griffin (4.38) boast blazing forty yard dash times. At 6 foot 233 pounds, running back D’onta Foreman could be the thunder to Zeke’s lighting for years to come. But don’t let his large frame fool you as he hit 4.4 on the stopwatch during his 40. Mack Collins is a 6’4″ 221 pound wide receiver with a 80″ wingspan that could turn him into a valuable red zone target.

Round 5 – No Current Pick

Round 6 – Pick #211 Overall

tarik Cohen
Dec 19, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; North Carolina A&T Aggies running back Tarik Cohen (28) is tackled by Alcorn State Braves defensive back Warren Gatewood (24) in the second quarter of the 2015 Celebration Bowl at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Avery Moss – DE – Youngstown St.
  2. Tarik Cohen – RB – N.C. A&T
  3. Jeremiah Ledbetter – DL – Arkansas
  4. Ryan Glasgow – DL – Michigan
  5. Monte Nicholson – S – Michigan St.

Again, while I don’t expect Dallas to 100% ignore the offensive side of the ball during the draft, I do anticipate the majority of the picks to be of the defensive variety, thus the overwhelming number of defensive prospects on these lists. Moss and Ledbetter have had contact with the Cowboys, while diminutive running back Tarik Cohen could fill the Lance Dunbar roll perfectly.

Round 7 Picks #228 Overall & #246 Overall

Oct 29, 2016; Oxford, MS, USA; Mississippi Rebels quarterback Chad Kelly (10) warms up prior to the game against the Auburn Tigers at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports
  1. Isaac Rochell – DL – Notre Dame
  2. Fred Ross – WR – Mississippi St.
  3. Malachi Dupree – WR – LSU
  4. Travi Dural – WR – LSU
  5. Chad Kelly – QB – Mississippi

The Cowboys have two picks the in the 7th round and could go a number of ways. Fred Ross was one of Dak Prescott’s favorite receivers while at Mississippi State and Dallas could look to recapture that chemistry. A pair of once highly touted wideouts from LSU in Dural and Dupree mostly suffered from abysmal quarterback play during their time in Baton Rouge. Chad Kelly is a wild card prospect with multiple red flags. However he does have the rare arm talent that may be worth developing into a solid back up to Prescott.