Cowboys Draft '10: Build Your Preliminary Board by Rafael Vela

Discussion in 'Draft Zone' started by cowboyjoe, Mar 30, 2010.

  1. cowboyjoe

    cowboyjoe Well-Known Member

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    Cowboys Draft '10: Build Your Preliminary Board
    by Rafael Vela on Mar 29, 2010 5:00 PM CDT 136 comments

    More photos » Brody Schmidt - AP .
    He may be beyond Dallas' reach, but the Cowboys will kick Dez Bryant's tires nonetheless. (AP Photo/Brody Schmidt, File)

    Browse more photos »
    The names of Cowboys pre-draft invitees is trickling out, with Todd Archer serving up ten of the 30 each team is allowed in this piece.

    Here we have clear evidence of teams hiding prospects in plain sight. Not all of the players who show up are serious prospects, though most are. I'd say, based on past experience, that 80% to 90% of these guys are real players of interest.

    Conversely, this list is not comprehensive. The Cowboys may love a handful of players who won't be invited. They're drafted guys in the first round who did not attend their meet-and-greets. Note, for instance, that not a single offensive tackle is on the invitees list, at least not on this partial one. We know Dallas will work out Vlad Ducasse, and I fully expect to see more OTs in the coming days.

    Here, however, is the clearest chance to build a preliminary board, no matter how meager it may be. The ten names here are spread out through the early rounds. Let's slot them:

    1st Round 2nd Round 3rd Round 4th Round & Later Rounds
    -- Dez Bryant, WR,Ok. St.

    - Mike Iuputi, G, Idaho

    - Jared Odrick, DE, Penn St.
    -- Morgan Burnett, FS, Georgia Tech

    -- Brandon LaFell, WR, LSU
    -- Brandon Ghee, CB Wake Forest

    -- Novarro Bowman, LB, Penn St.
    -- Sean Lee, ILB, Penn St.

    -- Taylor Price, WR, Ohio

    -- John Conner, FB, Kentucky

    Positions are relative, especially after we leave the 1st. I think it's safe to say Bryant, Iuputi and Odrick have 1st round grades. What about Burnett? High 2nd, or low? A candidate if Dallas trades down from 27 or one for 59? Ditto for LaFell.

    With Dallas picking so low in the 2nd, are Ghee and Bowman solid 3rd round grades or guys Dallas considers at 59? Is Price a guy who sneaks into the 3rd round thinking? And so on, and so on.

    Update. Here's more on Price's visit.

    Ohio wide receiver Taylor Price will meet with the Dallas Cowboys on a two-day visit beginning Tuesday, according to a league source.

    The senior wideout caught 56 passes for 784 yards and five touchdowns for the 9-5 Bobcats in 2009. In four years at Ohio, Price hauled in 149 passes for 2,019 yards and 14 touchdowns.

    Price has been a busy man as of late, having already worked out for the Carolina Panthers and New England Patriots. His 4.41 40-yard-dash at last month’s combine was the second-fastest time among the wide receivers that ran in Indianapolis (Clemson’s Jacoby Ford ran a 4.28).

    Currently the NFP’s 17th ranked wide receiver prospect, Price is a sound route runner who displays good balance down the field.

    Hit me up on Twitter: @JoeFortenbaugh

    Update II: Add CB Akwasi Owusu-Ansah to the visitor list.

    Cowboys, Dolphins To Host IUP CB Owusu-Ansah
    This story originally published on

    Akwasi Owusu-Ansah (IUP Athletics) By Chris Steuber NFL Draft Analyst
    Posted Mar 29, 2010

    | More's NFL Draft Analyst Chris Steuber has learned that the Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins will host Indiana University of Pennsylvania cornerback Akwasi Owusu-Ansah for a visit this week. Find out the details inside.

    There are many small school prospects that have emerged as potential high round draft picks this year, but one that’s gaining the most momentum because of his size and versatility is Indiana University of Pennsylvania cornerback Akwasi Owusu-Ansah. Owusu-Ansah’s ability to play cornerback, safety and even star as a return specialist has intrigued teams this offseason, and he’s now enjoying the benefit of his success.

    Owusu-Ansah maybe a small school prospect, but there's nothing small about his game.
    IUP Athletics has learned that Owusu-Ansah will visit the Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins this week, and both teams are interested in playing the 6-foot, 207-pound defensive back at free safety.

    The Cowboys are looking for a playmaker in their secondary to challenge hard-hitting safety Ken Hamlin as the team’s starting free safety. Hamlin brings an intimidating presence to the field, but he’s limited in coverage and has poor ball skills; Owusu-Ansah would be a huge upgrade over Hamlin. As far as the Dolphins, they decided to cut ties with over-priced 2008 free agent signee Gibril Wilson this offseason, and they’re taking an aggressive approach in their search for a safety option in the draft. The Dolphins have expressed interest in at least a handful of safeties this offseason, including Georgia’s Reshad Jones, who reported three weeks ago would visit the Dolphins on March 29th and 30th.

    Even though Owusu-Ansah is listed as a cornerback, in college he basically served as the team’s free safety. At IUP, the defensive structure calls for a lot of two-deep coverage where Owusu-Ansah played field corner, which requires him to function as a free safety. But at IUP, the linebackers and safeties amassed most of the tackles - that’s why Owusu-Ansah, who was the last line of defense, didn’t record many tackles during his career; he had 14 tackles in 2008 and 27 this past year. Owusu-Ansah is a physical player and will be a dynamic player at the next level; don’t let his lack of tackles alter your view of him as a prospect.

    During his career, Owusu-Ansah dominated the competition at the Division II level and generated some impressive statistics during his two-year stint as a starter; intercepting 10 passes (eight of them came during the 2008 season) and totaling nine touchdowns (four on punt returns, three on kickoffs, one on an interception and another returning a fumble) in his career. This past year, Owusu-Ansah scored five (three on punt returns and two on kickoffs) of his nine career touchdowns and was one of the most electric return specialists on any level in the nation.

    For his efforts this past year, Owusu-Ansah received an invitation to the East-West Shrine Game, but was unable to participate due to a shoulder injury he suffered in the season finale. But, he didn’t miss his opportunity to shine in front of scouts at the NFL Scouting Combine, and at that forum he showcased his talents. Owusu-Ansah ran a 4.32 in the 40, posted a 35.5-inch vertical and a 10-foot broad jump; he didn’t bench in Indianapolis, because his shoulder wasn’t 100-percent.

    On March 12th, Owusu-Ansah participated in the Ohio State Pro Day and continued to wow scouts with his natural ability. Surprisingly, he decided to run the 40 again and turned in another stellar time of 4.33, but scouts were shocked when he decided to participate in the bench press. With an injured shoulder, Owusu-Ansah put up 225 pounds 21 times and exceeded NFL personnel’s expectations. Shortly after the OSU Pro Day, it was revealed that Owusu-Ansah had a labrum tear in his shoulder, which he had surgery on two weeks ago.

    Despite having surgery on his shoulder, Owusu-Ansah could ultimately be selected in the second round. The team that drafts him understands that he won’t be ready for mini-camp after the draft, but he will be 100-percent by training camp this summer. Owusu-Ansah is currently the the 9th rated cornerback listed on’s 2010 NFL Draft Rankings.

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