FRISCO (KFDX/KJTL) — The first ever NFL virtual draft was a huge success for both the National Football League as a whole and the Dallas Cowboys in particular.
For the NFL, the virtual draft format saw little to no technical difficulties and the highest viewership of any draft in history, with an estimated 8.4 million viewers over the course of the three day event.
For the Cowboys, it’s one of the best drafts they’ve had in the history of their franchise, with multiple sources giving them an A+ or A grade after their final pick on Saturday evening.
While time will tell whether or not this draft class is truly a success, on paper, Dallas got value at every pick, great players fell to them, and the potential with each player they drafted is undeniable.
- Round 1 (Overall Pick 17) — WR CeeDee Lamb, Oklahoma
- Round 2 (Overall Pick 51) — CB Trevon Diggs, Alabama
- Round 3 (Overall Pick 82) — DT Neville Gallimore, Oklahoma
- Round 4 (Overall Pick 123) — CB Reggie Robinson II, Tulsa
- Round 4 (Overall Pick 146) — C Tyler Biadasz, Wisconsin
- Round 5 (Overall Pick 179) — DE Bradlee Anae, Utah
- Round 7 (Overall Pick 231) — QB Ben DiNucci, James Madison
When the final pick of the draft was in, the work began for the Cowboys’ personnel department to begin signing players they still had interest in, who went undrafted.
Cowboys 2020 Undrafted Free Agent Additions
Undrafted free agents are an important part of roster building, as the Cowboys know all too well. Nine undrafted free agents started at least one game for the Cowboys in the 2019 season, including offensive lineman La’El Collins, safety Jeff Heath and tight end Blake Jarwin.
Not to mention, one Tony Romo, predecessor to Dak Prescott and current beloved NFL commentator, was an undrafted free agent.
The Cowboys have signed 13 undrafted players so far, including 5 players from Texas universities.
WR Kendrick Rogers, Texas A&M University
At 6’4″ and 209 pounds, Rogers brings speed, body control, athleticism and ball skills that could translate on an NFL level.
He’s raw, relying mainly on his athletic ability, and needs work learning the wide receiver position.
He had stand out games against Clemson and LSU, where he showed flashes of his potential, but had a largely quiet college career outside of those two games.
With some work, Rogers could become a big-bodied WR4 or WR5 and compete for a roster spot.
OT Terence Steele, Texas Tech University
Steele was a four-year starter and team captain at Texas Tech, with 6’6″, 312 pound NFL-desired size. Last year, TTU’s o-line allowed only 18 sacks.
He’s smart and experienced, but his poor reflexes and inability to recover if beat off the line hurt his draft stock. He has talent and potential to compete for a roster spot on an elite offensive line.
RB Seweo Olinilua, Texas Christian University
Part one of the 1/2 TCU backfield punch, alongside Darius Anderson, also signed by Dallas.
At 6’3″ and 232 pounds, he was the bruiser of the two TCU backs with a unique combination of size, speed and pass catching ability. NFL insider Michael Gehlken reports the plan is to convert Olonilua to a fullback.
RB Darius Anderson, Texas Christian University
At 5’11”, 208 pounds, Anderson is an impact-making runner with the ability to catch out of the backfield and some kick return ability, but brings with him some durability concerns.
He lead his high school team to a state championship, rushing for 246 yards before being named MVP.
DE Ladarius Hamilton, University of North Texas
Hamilton was productive in the 2019 season, with a total of 67 tackles and 8.5 sacks.
Hamilton is 6’2″ and 262 pounds with good toughness and attitude. A
lthough he has heavy and rigid movement, he has the ability to set the edge well.
WR Aaron Parker, University of Rhode Island
Parker is 6’2″ and 209 with a basketball background.
He isn’t fast, nor is he a good route runner, but he’s got great size and great ball skills.
Parker recorded 30 touchdowns at Rhode Island, including 9 last year, along with 1,224 receiving yards.
He has a high level of body control, great timing and good hand strength, good instincts against a zone defense and has skills as a run blocker.
If he can improve his first step and route running, he could compete for a roster spot.
LB Francis Bernard, University of Utah
At 6’0″ and 234 pounds, his small size and lack of elite athleticism kept Bernard from being taken in the draft.
However, Bernard is an NFL-ready linebacker who will compete for a roster spot.
He will join teammate Bradlee Anae, who the Cowboys took in the fifth round.
His instincts, play recognition, playmaking ability against both the run and pass, ability to play middle or weak-side linebacker, and his history of “quarterbacking” the defense make him a steal of an undrafted pick-up.
TE Sean McKeon, University of Michigan
McKeon best projects as a possible “Y” receiver, with the chance to make the roster as a developmental third TE.
He’s solid, but lacks elite athleticism or the ability to flex out wide.
He has decent blocking ability and good instincts, who cashes in when given opportunities.
DT Garrett Marino, University of Alabama-Birmingham
Marino is a pass rush specialist with first step quickness and savvy.
He’s physically limited, with below average natural athleticism.
He’s 6’2″ and 290 pounds, coming off a senior season in which he racked up 42 tackles, 13.5 of those for loss and six sacks.
WR Stephen Guidry, Mississippi State University
Last year, Guidry recorded 387 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns.
He lacks experience, having played only two seasons at the FBS level, and needs to improve his route running.
At 6’4″ and 200 pounds, his size and athleticism offer an enticing possibility for development.
RB Rico Dowdle, University of South Carolina
A knee injury held Dowdle back last season, but still managed 500 yards rushing in 2019.
He’s 5’11” and 213 pounds, solid size for an NFL running back, and runs with toughness and vision.
He’s elusive and determined, but needs to become a better pass catcher and could use improvement as a blocker and with his blitz pick-up.
While his overall speed isn’t great, he has a great amount burst and could be in the running for the third spot on the depth chart.
TE Charlie Taumoepeau, Portland State University
Taumoepeau was on nearly every All-American team at the FSC level.
In 2019, he caught 36 passes for 474 yards and two touchdowns in just 10 games.
He’s a hands catcher, an efficient receiver and a decent blocker who will give his all for his team, but is not a natural athlete.
DE Ron’Dell Carter, James Madison University
Teammate of seventh-round QB Ben DiNucci, he recorded 23 sacks in his college career, ninth-most all-time.
After a stellar 2019 season, he received consensus All-American honors at the FSC level.
If there’s an award for it, Carter either won it or was a finalist for it last year.
S Luther Kirk, Illinois State University
Kirk earned FSC All-American honors in his senior season, recording 89 tackles and being named MVP of the East-West Shrine Bowl in January.
He’s a physical player with a ton of range and excellent ball skills. He recorded five interceptions during the 2018 season.
He’s also a natural leader, earning a captain designation twice.
LB Azur Kamara, University of Kansas
Kamara was versatile at Kansas, playing both defensive end and outside linebacker.
He was an All-Big 12 honorable mention his senior season.
He only played for Kansas for one season, after spending two years at the junior college level.