Taking Stock Of Dallas Cowboys' 2018 NFL Draft Picks

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Defensive Tackle Vita Vea, Washington 

If the Cowboys don't spend free-agent money on a defensive tackle, they could opt to use a first-round pick to shore up the position. Washington's Vita Vea would be a terrific selection anywhere after the top 15 if Dallas goes in that direction. 

Vea is more of your traditional nose tackle, but he can play as a 1-technique in Dallas. He excels at the point of attack and occupying double teams.

With the Cowboys already having a deep defensive line, Vea might be the missing link in unlocking the potential of the rest of the defense. He is limited somewhat as a pass-rusher, but his ability to stop the run easily makes him a value in the first round.


Linebacker Roquan Smith, Georgia 

The Cowboys have been after a speedy weakside linebacker for a while. If the team fails to make the playoffs in picks in the teens, linebacker Roquan Smith from Georgia would make a ton of sense.

Smith is another undersized linebacker (listed at just 225 pounds), but he can fly to the football and make plays. 

Sean Lee isn't getting any younger and has proved he just can't stay healthy. Smith has the athleticism to be a weakside linebacker in the NFL and the instincts to be an All-Pro linebacker.

If the Cowboys are lucky to have Smith sitting on the board when they are on the clock, they should sprint to the podium to select the 2017 SEC defensive player of the year.


Defensive End Harold Landry, Boston College

The Cowboys' roster is littered with left defensive ends. They have so many quality ones that they are forced to play Tyrone Crawford as a right defensive end and David Irving as a penetrating defensive tackle. But the one player/position they still don't have is that true right defensive end. 

That's exactly what Boston College's Harold Landry can provide, though. He is an undersized defensive end who excels as a pass-rusher. He's got a variety of moves, but they are all predicated off of his outstanding speed.

Landry is a similar player to what the Atlanta Falcons have in Vic Beasley. Marinelli would love to get his hands on Landry and unleash him in a rotation with Lawrence, Irving and Collins. 


Defensive End Arden Key, LSU

Dallas isn't afraid to take risks in the draft, especially at a pivotal position such as defensive end.

LSU's defensive end Arden Key is a player who has the talent to go in the top five, but a few off-field concerns (including his weight, per Sports Illustrated) might allow him to fall in the draft. 

Key is a prototypical right defensive end in Marinelli's scheme. He's listed at 6'6", 265 pounds in the team's official website and is still growing into his body. He's disruptive and productive and his best football is yet to come.

Pairing him with a great defensive line teacher such as Marinelli could allow him to produce like former LSU defensive end Danielle Hunter. This is a risk worth exploring for the Cowboys.  


Offensive Guard Quenton Nelson, Notre Dame

The Cowboys are likely to use their first-round selection on defense, but the one spot the team could consider is at left guard.

Jonathan Cooper has been serviceable this season, but he's a free agent in 2018 and is best suited as a reserve player. Dallas knows its offensive line is the bread and butter of the team, so don't expect any  hesitation on pulling the trigger on another offensive lineman. 

The one name that could intrigue them is Quenton Nelson from Notre Dame. He is a massive guard at 330 pounds who can play in any scheme. Because of his size, though, his best spot in the NFL might be as a left guard. Without a doubt, he is the best guard in the class.

Even if the Cowboys are drafting in the mid-to-late teens, guards typically fall in drafts. If Nelson were to be available for them, expect Dallas to seriously consider selecting their fourth offensive linemen in the first round in the last decade. 

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Source : http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2747894-taking-stock-of-dallas-cowboys-2018-nfl-draft-picks

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