The Dallas Cowboys signed quarterback Dak Prescott to a long-term extension on Monday, restructured contracts on Tuesday, and found they’d receive four compensatory picks in the 2021 NFL draft. The offseason couldn’t be starting off better in Dallas.
During Wednesday’s press conference, Stephen Jones revealed how he was in favor of trying to find holes in free agency while attacking the draft with a best player available mentality. With eleven picks in the 2021 NFL Draft, the Cowboys should have enough chances at the lottery to come away with good players.
In this Dallas Cowboys draft they have Dak Prescott secured and make late round trades
I tried to apply this common philosophy in this mock draft and came away incredibly satisfied with the talent. So with the eleventh pick in the first round, the Cowboys select…
1st Round, Pick 11 (NYG traded Picks 11 and 76 for Pick 10)
Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina
This may interest you, but cornerback Caleb Farley was available at pick 10 and was no longer available at pick 11. Sure, the Cowboys missed on a really good man coverage cornerback but acting like Jaycee Horn is some kind of consolation prize doesn’t help anyone. Jaycee Horn is a good player that likely does more for Dan Quinn and his Cover 1/Cover 3 defense than either of the other two top cornerbacks in Farley and Patrick Surtain II.
The son of former New Orleans Saint Joe Horn hails from Georgia and was recruited to South Carolina as a four-star recruit. In his three seasons in Columbia, Horn tallied over 100 tackles, 23 pass deflections, seven tackles for loss, and two interceptions, both coming in 2020.
The Gamecock possesses good size at 6-feet, 210 pounds, and uses his frame to his advantage at all areas of the field. He uses his arm length and good balance to jam all WRs at the line of scrimmage. He possesses the necessary change of direction and foot speed to mirror the footwork of WRs at the line of scrimmage and to mirror the receivers in the stem and breaks of their routes.
While in the receivers’ route stem, he displays a good use of hands to control the wide receiver with his good play strength. What often gets called “excessive contact” isn’t necessarily correct because Horn places his hands on the shoulder of the opposing wide receiver and isn’t grabbing other parts of the jersey. He does it often, but skillfully.
Horn displays average explosiveness but he does display good instincts in off man to mirror and defend short routes. In zone coverage, he displays good football IQ to overlap routes and solid transition quickness while matching receivers to minimize separation windows and even make plays on the ball.
In general, Horn displays good competitive toughness and does not shy away from high-profile names. In matchups against likely top-20 pick Kyle Pitts and top wide receiver Seth Williams, Horn had some of his best games of the season. Alongside another high effort player in Trevon Diggs, the starting defensive backfield could eventually strike fear into opposing receivers.
Horn overall is a very good player with very few concerns. His average explosiveness can allow easy completions underneath in off zone because he just isn’t fast enough to move from the deep 1/3rd zone to the curl zone. Much like the other top cornerbacks, he can struggle to tackle ball carriers. His pursuit angles are usually good, but his tackling technique, which causes him to tackle leading with his shoulder, doesn’t allow him to use his good play strength to consistently wrap up opposing players. His ball skills are solid, but for a team that wants turnovers, he isn’t the best player for that.
In this situation, the Cowboys got a really good cornerback and accumulated another third-round pick. Things couldn’t be starting off better.