Dallas Cowboys draft target – Antonio Mafi, G, UCLA

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

It’s not an NFL draft cycle if you are not talking about the big boys on the offensive line. The Dallas Cowboys lined up one of the better offensive lines in all of football last year and that’s with devastating injuries.

However, as most sensible football personnel and fans know, you can never have too many good offensive linemen. This team has an affinity for adding big men on their team and some would even say they excel at picking offensive linemen.

It’s time for the Dallas Cowboys to reload on the big men up front. They may find value late in the draft with Offensive Guard Antonio Mafi from UCLA.

At this point, it’s time for the Dallas Cowboys to leave Tyler Smith at the left tackle position for the entire season. If Tyron Smith does in fact return, he starts the season as your right tackle until Terrence Steele returns and then converts to your swing tackle, at the right price.

Where does that leave you? At the minimum, it leaves you with depth concerns at the guard positions. There is a cure, however, and the name of that cure is Antonio Mafi, offensive guard from UCLA.

O’Cyrus Torrence is a big man and Mafi is not far behind him. Will 6-foot-4, 339 pounds interest anyone? Sign me up for that size. Over his last three seasons, he has played some right guard but mostly lined up on the left side.

That should fall in the plus category for the Dallas Cowboys. Zack Martin rarely gets injured, but it would be a benefit to have an interior offensive lineman who can flipped sides if needed. He was a redshirt senior this past season, so he has the experience factor working for him.

According to PFF, his pass blocking grade (70.9) left a little to be desired if you subscribe to the analytics side of football. However, his run blocking grade was an 88.3 which bodes well for the Dallas Cowboys.

Head coach Mike McCarthy proclaims that he wants to run the football. If that is indeed the case, I would love to have a guard who can push some men off of their spot. This kid would fit seamlessly in a power blocking scheme. He may not start day one but maybe only one or two of these guard prospects will be at that caliber.

Antonio Mafi won’t be a player for everyone. He is a road grader type of player with some decent power.  In a draft with less than stellar guard prospects, teams may have to temper their expectations and grab a guy that at least has the physical profile.

Where would you draft a guy like this? He’s not a top 100 pick but he may not last to the sixth round so if Dallas wants him, they may have to grab him in the fifth round.

He wasn’t on the Dallas Cowboys early prospect visits, but more visits will happen. If it was any other position, the visits would worry me but with the Dallas Cowboys they will definitely turn over every stone when it comes to offensive linemen.