Dallas Cowboys Draft: Five Defensive Tackle Prospects You Need to Know

COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 09: Javon Kinlaw #3 (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)
COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 09: Javon Kinlaw #3 (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) /
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ARLINGTON, TEXAS – SEPTEMBER 28: Justin Madubuike #52 of the Texas A&M Aggies during the Southwest Classic at AT&T Stadium on September 28, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

One of the biggest needs for the Dallas Cowboys this offseason is defensive tackle. Regardless what they do in free agency, the draft could provide some players.

Before the offseason really gets fully underway, one of the biggest needs is defensive tackle for the Dallas Cowboys. The defense was gashed in the run game last year, and even with a new scheme, the Cowboys need some more to the inside of their defensive line. This draft has some players, some starters, and some depth that could be good additions for the Cowboys.

While they could certainly add some talent in free agency, the Cowboys will still need some depth, and some big run stuffers. Without Byron Jones, the Cowboys will need more on the defensive line to make up for the probable downgrade in the secondary. Pressure will help. The Cowboys could look to bring back some of their guys, but with the performance over the last few years, it is a need that should be addressed.

Round 1

There is a good chance Derrick Brown will be the first defensive tackle off the board. When the Cowboys are picking, the names of Javon Kinlaw, Neville Gallimore, and Ross Blacklock are defensive tackle names to know. Here we will go with Kinlaw for fit and value (Gallimore and Blacklock may be a slight reach at this point in the draft). A trade down could probably still grab one of the two others and shouldn’t be discounted.

Kinlaw is not a 1-technique defensive tackle, but his skillset would fit well for what the Cowboys are looking for. He can collapse a pocket from the inside, but can also play defensive end in a three man front. His hands are active and he has enough power to rush with a good toolkit. He is a sure tackler and is not a guy teams should run into with hopes of breaking his grip up the middle.

Where Kinlaw needs some work is his footwork, acceleration, and sideline to sideline coverage. He has a great first step, but when forced to change directions quickly has needs a second to get back up to speed. If teams stretch him out without help on the outside, here he will struggle a little. But for an inside presence, pass rush, and straight ahead defense, Kinlaw has it all. He would instantly start on this defense.