The 2023 NFL Scouting Combine officially came to an end in Indianapolis this past Sunday, where the event has been held annually since 1987 (minus 2021 due to COVID). Each of the 32 professional NFL teams, including the Dallas Cowboys, had their eyes peeled during individual drills as they watched the 319 prospects (5 fewer than last year) invited by the Combine’s “Player Selection Committee.”
Now that the combine has concluded, how will the draft shake out for the Dallas Cowboys?
This front office has a tall task as they head into the 2023 draft and free agency with 22 free agents. The Cowboys haven’t made a splash in free agency since they signed Brandon Carr in 2012 on a 5-year deal worth just over 50 million dollars.
It’s not likely that they will lose all 22 free agents, but with their lack of participation in free agency the Dallas Cowboys will have to rely heavily on the draft in attempts to fix their lack of depth at wide receiver, linebacker, cornerback, and along the offensive line.
As we head into this seven-round mock draft, keep in mind that the Combine just wrapped up, and player rankings and predictions may fluctuate from what you’ve been seeing the last couple of weeks. When completing this mock draft I used a mixture of information from The Draft Network, NFL Draft Buzz, and results from the Combine itself on NFL.com.
Dallas Cowboys Round One – Cam Smith – Cornerback – South Carolina
The biggest question for me heading into the 2023 draft is, How early will the run on Cornerbacks start in round one? After looking at team needs across the NFL and watching the Combine, I believe the answer is EARLY. I can see anywhere from 4-6 cornerbacks being selected on day 1.
With several prospects boosting their value during the Combine, I see Cam Smith sitting atop the Cowboys’ board when they pick 26th overall (Miami’s pick forfeited at 21). Smith has good length for his height to pair with his quick feet and strong ability to flip his hips and go in coverage. He also showcases his physicality in man coverage with top-end ball skills. Smith would fit well in Dan Quinn’s scheme and only add to the secondary’s ball skills who were tied for 7th with 16 total interceptions.
On the flip side, Cam Smith is on the leaner side for an NFL cornerback as he weighs in at 180 pounds which is in the 8th percentile. With the proper training and conditioning, he should put on 10-15 pounds in the coming year. He also tends to get a tad handsy at times when he gets beat, which leads to his fair share of penalties in 2022.
As a pure prospect, Smith has first-round talent and skills written all over him. It’s not a reach to say the Dallas Cowboys would draft him in round one with confidence to start along side Trevon Diggs when the opening kick-off comes around in September.