Dallas Cowboys: 7-Round mock draft readies team for playoff return

Patrick Surtain II, 2021 NFL mock draft (Photo by Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports)
Patrick Surtain II, 2021 NFL mock draft (Photo by Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Dallas Cowboys
Dallas Cowboys, Patrick Surtain II. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

The Dallas Cowboys are in the playoff hunt already but a strong 2021 NFL Draft class can put solidify that. This 7-round mock draft lands them a haul.

Now that Dak Prescott has finally been signed to a long-term contract, the Dallas Cowboys appear to be in a good long-term position. Yes, their defense, offensive line and general state of being was an unmitigated disaster last year but things could stabilize with Prescott back and some health.

Part of that is due to some savvy free agency moves by Cowboys front office to start the new league year. Signings of Keanu Neal, Damontae Kazee and Tarell Basham, among others, should prove to be hugely beneficial to Dallas on the defensive side of the ball as they try to turn that unit around under new defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.

Beyond that, though, there will be an actual offseason for Mike McCarthy, Kellen Moore and Quinn to install what they’re trying to work on in the 2021 season. Throw in the No. 10 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, and the Cowboys are in a great spot to make a big move and compete for a playoff spot in a real way.

Nailing the draft is key to that, though. Subsequently, let’s look at one way in which they could do that with a 7-round mock draft for the Dallas Cowboys less than four weeks out from the start of the draft. (Note: This mock was simulated using The Draft Network mock draft machine.)

Dallas Cowboys 7-round mock draft less than four weeks out

player. CB. Alabama. Patrick Surtain II. 1. 123. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis

Even with being able to retain Jourdan Lewis and C.J. Goodwin, the Cowboys secondary still needs plenty of help. They were a bad unit in the 2020 season, meaning there was always room for improvement, but they also lost Anthony Brown and Chidobe Awuzie in free agency. Thus, they need an outside running mate to pair with last year’s second-round pick, Trevon Diggs.

Why not put his former Alabama teammate, Patrick Surtain II, in that role? There has been a big debate about which cornerback the Cowboys should take with the 10th overall pick as Caleb Farley, Jaycee Horn and Surtain all seemingly have a claim. But with Farley’s surgery and necessary development and as Horn’s grabbiness and over-physicality concerns me, Surtain is clearly the guy.

On film, Surtain, stood out as the most pro-ready cornerback in the class from a technical aspect. He plays the position already like an NFL veteran with his footwork, eye discipline and body positioning. The Alabama star has great instincts and his NFL bloodlines are obvious.

What makes him the no-brainer pick at No. 10 for me, though, is his pro day when he proved that he is on the same level of athleticism as Farley and Horn (something that was in question) as he ran a 4.46-second 40-yard dash and aced his other drills. Combined with his elite skill at the position, Surtain is a day one starter and potential star for the Cowboys.