Cowboys just fell for Mazi Smith because they had Larry Allen, Tyron Smith dreams

VaqueroTD

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I’ve been reading a lot about Mazi lately and wanted to clear up a few things.

- Mazi was drafted to be a nose. Cowboys said he was a first year starter and they expected him to quickly take snaps away from the older Hankins.
- EVERY scout profile pointed out that this guy was slow off the ball AND poor leverage! HUGE. RED. FLAG, Absolutely stops anyone in the NFL from being successful if not improved so I’m not sure why the Cowboys didn’t realize he was a project? He was #13 on the draft board!
- In TC, it became obvious he wasn’t going to take any of Hankins’s playing time, the team started playing him as a three tech… remember that? We all thought that Dan Quinn was just trying to add some wrinkles for the rookie to get him more time, but I think it was because he realized he wasn’t going to succeed as a nose. I just think they gave up already on him and maybe they thought Hankins was going to be that good and not hurt? BTW, these are early bust alerts, sort of reminds me of things we saw with Bobby Carpenter early on. Team desperately trying to get anything out of their first round pick.
- The team told him to lose weight. Why do we know? Because the players get fined if they don’t meet weight and we would’ve heard about it. A lot! He lost a ton!
- I think where a lot of the confusion started was fans did not realize he was already getting a lot of snaps as a three tech, saying it takes time for a nose to develop…. someone here posted a thread that showed the numbers mid-season (some premium stat sites provide that info) but he was barely played as a true nose until Hankins went down because they had no choice.

So here we are, the team hopes that if he gains his weight back, he will be reborn, but it still does nothing to fix his deficiencies. I would be interested to hear from you coaches, if that can be fixed at the pro level. With Zimmer the crafty experienced defensive coordinator, if anyone can do it, he can. Zimm can also ride his butt if there are some motivation issues because sometimes I wonder. But going back to the title, I just think the Cowboys got caught up on Mazi’s physical WOW factor. He sort of looks like Tyron Smith, just a natural gorilla giant who carries his weight well…. and gives off the Larry Allen vibes of upper body strength. But unfortunately, that’s not all it takes to succeed in the NFL. Here is hoping he works out, but I would not start investing in MazI futures anytime soon. I think the Cowboys are setting themselves and our linebackers up for failure if they don’t find at least a younger Hankins type somewhere before the draft.
 
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VaqueroTD

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One more thing to add, I remember Dan Quinn‘s first press conference after early preseason games. He pointed out two players that he mentioned he was excited to see on the field because they hadn’t shown much in training camp. He said it politically correct, giving them a lot of slack because it was their first chance to play with the chains off…. but looking back, I interpret that more as “I thought these guys were busts, maybe they’re not.“ I can’t remember who the other young player was but I do remember one was Mazi because I was worried that he didn’t seize the position in training camp.

Playing devils advocate, I remember Tyler Smith couldn’t beat his man on the depth chart either but when Tyron went down he was thrown into the fire. Micah Parsons was also thrown into the fire his rookie year. Remember game two or three, when we didn’t really have any healthy pass rushing edges, and had no choice but to play him there? Up until that point, he was still struggling somewhat as a linebacker. Both of these guys showed pretty quickly that they had what it took to succeed in the NFL, but we haven’t seen any of that from Mazi in his first year as a first round pick.
 

VaqueroTD

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He was a reach.

And unfortunately a bust.

He is painfully slow off the ball and that’s not changing. It’s a law of physiology.
There’s that infamous draft day video that shows a war room talking about the pick and Will McClay takes the hits since he’s the one that is the most verbal, but someone definitely dropped the ball on that one. What frustrates me about that is McCarthy has almost nothing to say. Bill Parcells may have goofed on Bobby Carpenter, but at least he stuck with his guns. We got a lot of other winners in the front seven.

 

stiletto

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McClay is allowed a miss here and there but if we have another bad draft this year, the wheels are really going to start coming off. Mazi + Schoon were a disaster, no way we needed Schoon with Fergurson. He'll never be TE1. Wasted, reach pick. Mazi probably looked like a great fit but its obvious he's not a top tier 1T.
 

Pola_pe_a

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He may be able to get a bit quicker off the ball but his technique is also terrible. From the bit I’ve watched him he doesnt bring his feet with him and his hands aren’t very good. Guys get in on his body way too easily.
He looks like a guy that got by with power and never developed technique.
 

charron

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CowboysZone LOYAL Fan
I’ve been reading a lot about Mazi lately and wanted to clear up a few things.

- Mazi was drafted to be a nose. Cowboys said he was a first year starter and they expected him to quickly take snaps away from the older Hankins.
- EVERY scout profile pointed out that this guy was slow off the ball AND poor leverage! HUGE. RED. FLAG, Absolutely stops anyone in the NFL from being successful if not improved so I’m not sure why the Cowboys didn’t realize he was a project? He was #13 on the draft board!
- In TC, it became obvious he wasn’t going to take any of Hankins’s playing time, the team started playing him as a three tech… remember that? We all thought that Dan Quinn was just trying to add some wrinkles for the rookie to get him more time, but I think it was because he realized he wasn’t going to succeed as a nose. I just think they gave up already on him and maybe they thought Hankins was going to be that good and not hurt? BTW, these are early bust alerts, sort of reminds me of things we saw with Bobby Carpenter early on. Team desperately trying to get anything out of their first round pick.
- The team told him to lose weight. Why do we know? Because the players get fined if they don’t meet weight and we would’ve heard about it. A lot! He lost a ton!
- I think where a lot of the confusion started was fans did not realize he was already getting a lot of snaps as a three tech, saying it takes time for a nose to develop…. someone here posted a thread that showed the numbers mid-season (some premium stat sites provide that info) but he was barely played as a true nose until Hankins went down because they had no choice.

So here we are, the team hopes that if he gains his weight back, he will be reborn, but it still does nothing to fix his deficiencies. I would be interested to hear from you coaches, if that can be fixed at the pro level. With Zimmer the crafty experienced defensive coordinator, if anyone can do it, he can. Zimm can also ride his butt if there are some motivation issues because sometimes I wonder. But going back to the title, I just think the Cowboys got caught up on Mazi’s physical WOW factor. He sort of looks like Tyron Smith, just a natural gorilla giant who carries his weight well…. and gives off the Larry Allen vibes of upper body strength. But unfortunately, that’s not all it takes to succeed in the NFL. Here is hoping he works out, but I would not start investing in MazI futures anytime soon. I think the Cowboys are setting themselves and our linebackers up for failure if they don’t find at least a younger Hankins type somewhere before the draft.
If the above in bold is true, why did they insist he drop weight and play 3tech so much? What the did to Mazi is unforgivable. We all look at mazi and think 1 tech, but the jonses don't like 1 techs so they pushed him to 3T to make their investment look better if it paid off but it backfired. They took away the 1 area of his game he was best at and he failed to develop the rest of his game. Not entirely his fault and I hope Zimmer is allowed to get him back on track.
 

eromeopolk

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Will McClay just gives the facts and suggestion. He is not calling the pick. They are not even using the draft board or this discussion would not be necessary. Draft the best and highest rated available player of need.

The lost of Lionel Vital is what is really showing.
 

funkytown817

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The 2023 draft will go down as one of the worst ever.

Amateur scouts knew the problem with Mazi. Slow off the ball. They reached for need.

Then they drafted a 25 year old back up tight end in the 2nd round.

The rest of the draft were all backups that will be out of the league soon. Overshown hurt his knee, and hopefully he recovers. He is our only hope with this draft.
 

VaqueroTD

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If the above in bold is true, why did they insist he drop weight and play 3tech so much? What the did to Mazi is unforgivable. We all look at mazi and think 1 tech, but the jonses don't like 1 techs so they pushed him to 3T to make their investment look better if it paid off but it backfired. They took away the 1 area of his game he was best at and he failed to develop the rest of his game. Not entirely his fault and I hope Zimmer is allowed to get him back on track.
Watch the video that I posted above. It’s clear what they intended him to be.

I explain why they started putting him in different roles. True, some of it is speculation, because not a single coach is ever going to admit that a player is failing, but you can read between the lines.
 

1942willys

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They convinced themselves he was the problem solver and nothing else mattered

This was a fail of the decision makers because all indications are that the scouts were correct in their description which is what they are responsible for
 

ghst187

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He may be able to get a bit quicker off the ball but his technique is also terrible. From the bit I’ve watched him he doesnt bring his feet with him and his hands aren’t very good. Guys get in on his body way too easily.
He looks like a guy that got by with power and never developed technique.
Basically he can’t play football….
 

MapleLeaf

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Mazi's college senior year highlights don't show him being slow off the ball...


On the very first play of this video hit the pause button on the two second mark and toggle back and forth from 0:02 to 0:04. He is slow, and he was beaten by his teammates and the opposition to contact.

Also toggle between 1:07 to 1:08. It's even worse! Those reaction times should have been picked up by the scouts. I'm sorry, but that was a serious miss, and we must have thought seeing the hype video of him jump climbing all those stairs in a straight line was an indication of winning line play.

In this league if you are late you are negated.
 

gimmesix

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On the very first play of this video hit the pause button on the two second mark and toggle back and forth from 0:02 to 0:04. He is slow, and he was beaten by his teammates and the opposition to contact.

Also toggle between 1:07 to 1:08. It's even worse! Those reaction times should have been picked up by the scouts. I'm sorry, but that was a serious miss, and we must have thought seeing the hype video of him jump climbing all those stairs in a straight line was an indication of winning line play.

In this league if you are late you are negated.
I believe they saw a power player in Mazi and felt they could fix the snap issue. I'm sure they still fill they can because technique can be improved. We'll see if they are able.
 

MapleLeaf

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I believe they saw a power player in Mazi and felt they could fix the snap issue. I'm sure they still fill they can because technique can be improved. We'll see if they are able.
I'm concerned that learning techniques will not be able to overcome his:

1. Slow mental reaction.
2. Explosion out of the stance.
3. Quick hands.

If we could dissect Mazi (invasive muscle biopsy) I wonder if he genetically lacks "fast twitch" 2A and 2X muscle fibres that results in slower reaction?
 
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