At the back of the first round, it difficult to predict where the best value will be found. With premium positions like receiver and cornerback likely to be targeted by multiple teams, there’s a fairly significant chance the board will be empty when the Dallas Cowboys go on the clock at Pick 26.
Offensive tackle is high value position that fills a low key need for the Dallas Cowboys. Terence Steele is a restricted free agent who’s expected back, but for how long? Tyler Smith has inside/outside ability but is with a new position coach. Where will they want him short and long-term?
Darnell Wright is a top offensive tackle prospect who could be the best player on the Dallas Cowboys board when they go on the clock.
At 6-foot-6, 335 pounds, Darnell Wright looks the part of an NFL offensive tackle. The former five-star recruit has been a household name since entering school at Tennessee. He was a Day 1 starter and has experience playing both right and left tackle.
Wright checks all of the boxes. He is long, strong, and athletic. He can add strength without losing his speed. He’s a RT turned LT who is one of the most experienced players in the draft. He’s played all of the top pass rushers and has a proven track record of success. He’s not NFL-dominant, hence his availably, but he’s extremely safe.
He played right tackle at the Senior Bowl showing he can be a beast on either side and a tantalizing piece for a team like Dallas who could be looking for options based on how the 2023 season unfolds.
Wright has an NFL build capable of excelling at the LT position in the NFL. If the Dallas Cowboys decide they want Tyler Smith to play guard in 2023, Wright could be a plug and play starter at LT. If they prefer Smith stays at LT, Wright could be the eventual replacement for Steele who could be playing on a restricted tender in 2023 and become an unrestricted free agent in 2024.
Even if Tyron Smith stays another year in Dallas, the Dallas Cowboys could have a need at tackle and would be lucky to get a player of Darnell Wright’s pedigree late in the first round.
Projected Draft Spot: Likely to be a late first round pick after his impressive showing in Mobile (20-40 range) with TDN giving him a second round value and slating him 55 on their big board.
The Dallas Cowboys may have more pressing needs in the first round but if their top targets are off the board, this would represent a high value selection they probably wouldn’t regret long-term.