The Dallas Cowboys had a successful NFL Draft. They didn’t reach that far and got themselves the key pieces they needed. And, they did it all without having the fans come away with a ton to scratch their heads about—well, almost.
They did pass up on a guy that was highly touted coming out of Florida State, plays a premium position, and is a need for the Cowboys after losing Randy Gregory in free agency in Jermaine Johnson II. But, you can’t knock them for everything and perhaps they wanted something more secure with the questions surrounding Johnson’s lone year of elite production.
Instead of Johnson, the Cowboys chose Tyler Smith, the offensive lineman from Tulsa. By now, you should be able to see where this one is going.
If you had to choose one draftee that has the highest likelihood of starting in Week 1 of the season, it would be the big man up front. The most obvious reason is that he was the Cowboys’ top pick in the draft, which increases his likelihood magnificently in comparison to the rest of their draft picks.
Secondly, you are talking about a position of need. After cutting La’el Collins (now a Bengal) and allowing the penalty machine that was Connor Williams to walk to the Miami Dolphins, the Cowboys needed to begin to try and sure up their offensive front again.
Tyler Smith is the draftee most likely to start in Week 1 for the Cowboys
The young gun is considered to be a mauler in the running game by many. Speaking of the running game though, that’s the next reason he is the most likely starter.
For a team that has prided themselves on that aspect of the game since, at least, drafting Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys need to get back to their power running selves if they want to actually compete for a title—or even have a shot.
Though they ranked slightly above the middle of the pack last season when it came to rushing yards per contest, one can argue that a lot of that was due to the splash plays made every game or so by the secondary scat back in Tony Pollard.
Their offense, as a whole, racked up yards. However, in comeback scenarios, they were not able to continue to control a game with their brute force when they needed to, which brings me to my last point. The Cowboys have the tools to be a complete dynamic offense. However, the play-caller can become a little bit too enamored with the pass, which then puts everyone in a tough spot if the down and distance of it all don’t work out in their favor.
Adding more balance back to the offense (meaning being able to get four-plus yards on a first or second down carry) while also taking some of the load off the quarterback’s arm, can mean the world when it comes to dominating a possession, a game, or opposing defenses all year long.
Smith, the big man that will be a part of the middle of that Cowboys offense, could have a lot to do with that. That’s why I believe he is the most likely of the draft class to be a starter for the Cowboys in Week 1.