2013 NFL Draft: Defensive Positional Rankings for Dallas Cowboys Draft Prospects

2013 NFL Draft: Defensive Positional Rankings for Dallas Cowboys Draft Prospects

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Defensive End

  1. DJonesBjoern Werner, Florida State
  2. Ezekiel Ansah, BYU
  3. Damontre Moore, Texas A&M
  4. Datone Jones, UCLA
  5. Cornellius Carradine, Florida State
  6. Margus Hunt, SMU
  7. Sam Montgomery, LSU
  8. Alex Okafor, Texas
  9. William Gholston, Michigan State
  10. Devin Taylor South Carolina

For years the Cowboys have needed to build a dominant rotation on the defensive line.  They seem to have some depth there with the transition to the 4-3 but could use some young guys who can be productive in situational work.

There are some great 4-3 ends that are good all around players.  My guy to watch out of this group is Datone Jones.  If the Cowboys get good value on him in the second round I believe they’ll pull the trigger to land him as a depth weak-side defensive end.

Defensive Tackle

  1. Sharrif Floyd, Florida
  2. Sheldon Richardson, Missouri
  3. Star Lotulelei, Utah
  4. Jesse Williams, Alabama
  5. Johnathan Hankins, Ohio State
  6. Kawann Short, Purdue
  7. Sylvester Williams, North Carolina
  8. Jordan Hill, Penn State
  9. Brandon Williams, Missouri Southern State
  10. Akeem Spence, Illinois

Josh Brent and Jay Ratliff both face legal trouble.  Even if they weren’t the Cowboys would still need to address depth at this position.

The 1 and 3-technique is very important in the Tampa 2 defense and the Cowboys need to find guys who can get up field.  Sheldon Richardson would be ideal but the popular idea is that offensive line will be the first pick for the Cowboys.

A few guys to watch here will be Jordan Hill and Sylvester Williams.  Both guys are athletic guys who can play both techniques and are going to be value picks in this draft.

Outside Linebacker

  1. JJonesDion Jordan, Oregon
  2. Jarvis Jones, Georgia
  3. Barkevious Mingo, LSU
  4. Arthur Brown, Kansas St
  5. Sean Porter, Texas A&M

Unless something crazy happens, I expect that the Cowboys keep the acquisition of linebackers to undrafted free agents and free agency.

Inside Linebacker

  1. Alec Ogletree, Georgia
  2. Kevin Minter, LSU
  3. Kevin Reddick, North Carolina
  4. Manti Te’o, Notre Dame
  5. Jon Bostic, Florida

Sean Lee has this position locked up.  Unless exceptional value presents itself to the Cowboys, I can’t see them selecting anyone from this positional group in April.


  1. Dee Millner
  2. Desmond Trufant, Washington
  3. Xavier Rhodes, Florida State
  4. David Amerson, NC State
  5. Darius Slay, Mississippi State

Again, the Cowboys spent last season solidifying this position.  They will look for a priority undrafted free agent but they won’t be wasting any picks here.  Sorry Mathieu fans.


  1. kenny+vaccaroKenny Vaccaro, Texas
  2. Jonathan Cyprien, Florida International
  3. Matt Elam, Florida
  4. Eric Reid, LSU
  5. Phillip Thomas, Fresno State
  6. Shawn Williams, Georgia
  7. Bacarri Rambo, Georgia
  8. Tony Jefferson, Oklahoma
  9. D.J. Swearinger, South Carolina
  10. T.J. McDonald, USC

The Cowboys released Gerald Sensabaugh but also drafted Matt Johnson last season.  There is concern about the stability of this position and really has been since the departure of Darren Woodson.

The Cowboys will look here for the best possibly value.  They will be able to get a franchise caliber play in the first two rounds due to a very deep safety class.

My guys to watch here is Jonathan Cyprien and Eric Reid who both have exceptional deep coverage skills but can also wreak havoc in the box.

However, just be prepared for the Cowboys to pass on the top-tier guys because they feel Matt Johnson can become a playmaker.