Another week has ended in Cowboys land, and all has been relatively quiet. Save for the very disappointing news about the hip of Mackenzy Bernadeau. You never want to hear about an injury taking out a guy for three months you have just signed to be a starter, but I suppose this injury hitting in May is way better than September. Nevertheless, continuity and reps are what makes an offensive line strong, and it doesn't appear that their projected Week 1 offensive line is going to get much time together before mid-training camp. Further, any talk about a position conversion for Bernadeau as a center option would likely reduce substantially with that development.
Before we get to emails, please find some additional reading from the last few weeks as I have broken down the rookie class by viewing extensive game tape from their college bodies of work. Yes, it has been mentioned that I have not really done this for Mo Claiborne, and I will get to it. I just assumed that there was enough Claiborne analysis available on the market, so I put him to the back of the list. Odd marketing strategy, but I have Danny Coale and Ronald Leary broken down for you here:
3rd Round: Tyrone Crawford 4th Round: Kyle Wilber 4th Round: Matt Johnson 5th Round: Danny Coale 6th Round: James Hanna 7th Round: Caleb McSurdy Undrafted: Ronald Leary
Also, speaking of bad marketing, I don't think you are supposed to promote other people's websites, but this is very good work from Cowboys Nation and Rafael Vela. He spends 4 blog entries looking at the Rob Ryan defense in a well-defined, broken-down, sort of way. I enjoyed it and I think you will, too:
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4
And now that we have linked up everything so thoroughly, here are some real emails from you:
Hi BobYou seem pretty high on the Cowboys draft. I'd be interested in your thoughts on how many of the seven draft picks will win roster spots and how many will start at some point next year and how many will start eventually. I know it's early but this does seem like a promising draft.
J. David Green
I have received messages like this quite a bit since I did breakdowns of each player that the Cowboys selected, and I am a bit careful to be clear on some things.
The draft is about two things, to me. 1) How does the player compare with other players in the draft? and 2) how does the player compare with other players on the team? When I am watching these draft picks on tape, I will be honest, I am not considering what they could have done at that spot in the draft. Maybe I should, but to do that, I would need a comprehensive breakdown of everyone on the Cowboys' board when they were sitting in the 3rd Round. Given that I didn't do that, I take the other approach.
How can this guy impact the Dallas Cowboys? And when they take Tyrone Crawford, for instance, do I think that he has a good chance to ultimately be one of the best Dallas players at that position?
If I had done it the other way, I think one could reasonably argue that Philip Blake from Baylor or Alameda Ta'Amu from Washington would have been a more immediate need for the Cowboys than Crawford. But, they selected Crawford and instead of comparing him to those players they didn't take, I start to compare him to Marcus Spears, Kenyon Coleman, Jason Hatcher, and Sean Lissemore. And from that standpoint, I love the Cowboys draft.
I think that Danny Coale can push all of the other current candidates for the third WR. I think Matt Johnson could start at safety in 2012 at some point. I think Caleb McSurdy and Kyle Wilber could instantly be two of the best three special teams cover guys this season.
So, understand, it is two different conversations that are easily confused. Did the Cowboys have a great 2012 draft relative to the rest of the league? I don't know. That would require me to know those other 31 rosters as well as I know Dallas'. But, do I feel the Cowboys did a nice job getting players that can instantly improve the quality of their roster 1-53? Yes. I really do.
Save this column, so if the 2012 draft goes as badly as 2009, you can remind me that I loved it when it happened. Because I think all of these players will make the team. Perhaps that actually discloses what I think of the Dallas roster to begin with. I think there was a real vacancy in quality down the line, and now there is not as much.