Round 7, pick 243
RB Darwin Thompson
Every year the Dallas Cowboys search for a change-of-pace back to play behind Ezekiel Elliott and every year they miss out. Finding a smaller and quicker running back to spell Zeke in 2019 will help take this offense to the next level.
It seemed all too often, when Zeke left, the running game died. Thompson brings electricity and and an undeniable change of pace.
Thompson has the same elite contact balance as Zeke but at a fraction of the size. With the ability to work out of the slot as a receiver, Thompson also fits on the field WITH Zeke – something the other running backs struggled to do last season.
Darwin Thompson is well-rounded enough he could even serve as the RB2 and wouldn’t need a big-bodied Zeke-clone to pair with. He’s small in stature but respectable in short-yardage situations. But it’s the open field he really shines.
Whether it’s a check-down or a screen, Thompson has a way of making players miss. He follows blocks brilliantly and always keeps his eyes downfield, planning his next move two moves in advance. A very fun kid to watch who could also serve a special teams return man role in the NFL.
RB2 Rod Smith is a free agent and RB3 Darius Jackson is still raw. But even at their best neither would be defined as a change of pace. It seems every season the Dallas Cowboys target a change-of-pace running back and every year he gets drafted before Dallas can pull the trigger. That may be the case here as well.
Thompson may be a small school, JUCO transfer, but he’s getting pretty popular in the draft community. It stands to reason he may be an early Day 3 pick and not a realistic possibility for a team like the Cowboys.
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Many people want to get a defensive tackle early and many want an offensive linemen early. While I wouldn’t be opposed to one of those, I consider the need overblown. The Dallas Cowboys suffered from an uncommon number and severity of injuries to their O-line. It’s unlikely to happen again and the line looks potentially dominant as-is (more on this next week).
The defensive line, particularly under tackle, is a major need on this team as well. With Tyrone Crawford and Maliek Collins possibly playing their last seasons in Dallas, the Cowboys would be wise to start the grooming process now. Then again, we have Rod Marinelli for a reason and that reason is that he has a knack for developing sub-par linemen into above-average performers.
Upgrading the passing game is my priority and I think I accomplished it. As we’ll discuss in future conversations, the passing game is the single most impactful aspect to the game nowadays and it warrants massive investment.
That’s all for now, be sure to check out Fanspeak’s mock draft simulator yourself and don’t forget to apply a little bit of realism. Keep in mind, player evaluations are coming in by the day, as such, rankings and value is far from set.