Saturday, May 20, 2023

Dallas Cowboys Post-Draft 2023 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a post-draft roundup for the Dallas Cowboys in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 7

Most improved: Defensive line

With the addition of Brandin Cooks, wide receiver could be the choice, but it's the defensive line. They selected Mazi Smith in the first round and along with the return of Johnathan Hankins, they now have bulk on the interior.

The Cowboys also re-signed Dante Fowler, who had six sacks last season, to keep core pass-rushers Micah Parsons, Dorance Armstrong, DeMarcus Lawrence and Sam Williams together. They added Junior Fehoko, a fourth-round pick, to the mix of versatile players like Osa Odighizuwa and Chauncey Golston. This is the deepest group the Cowboys have had in ages and might be the deepest in the NFL. -- Rank: 6

The strength of Dallas' defense is a fierce pass rush led by Micah Parsons, DeMarcus Lawrence and Dorance Armstrong. Head coach Mike McCarthy believes that strength will intensify after the team used its first-round pick on Michigan run-stuffer Mazi Smith. It marked the first time Dallas has used a first-round selection on defensive tackle since the pick of Russell Maryland in 1991 (that one worked out pretty well). "We have an elite pass-rush group," McCarthy said, "and just the fact of the matter, when your run defense improves, obviously you've got some longer down-and-distances with it, which tilts the field toward our pass rush." Makes sense to us.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 7

Mike McCarthy takes over play calling for Dak Prescott this season. Adding veterans Brandin Cooks and Stephon Gilmore is big, and they also had a good draft.

USA Today -- Rank: 6

To the degree it's possible, is "America's Team" under the radar a bit? Let's not forget they scored the fourth-most points in the league in 2022 despite QB Dak Prescott missing five games while LT Tyron Smith and WR Michael Gallup were hurt and WR Brandin Cooks was in Houston. Dallas remains a legitimate threat to Philly.

The Athletic -- Rank: 9

Draft takeaway: That video of assistant director of college scouting Chris Vaughn calling his son Deuce to tell him the Cowboys were drafting him was no doubt the feel-good moment of draft weekend. The sixth-round running back will be an early fan favorite.

Hype man: All this talk about the NFC not having any good quarterbacks is offensive in its dismissal of Dak Prescott. With Brandin Cooks added to the mix and the offensive line healthy, this will be the season he enters the MVP conversation.

Dak Downer: Hold on, we used our second-round pick on a tight end who turns 25 in September and never had more than 35 catches or 418 receiving yards in a season? With Tucker Kraft, Darnell Washington and Strange still on the board?

PFF -- Rank: 7

In the graphic below, it's clear the Cowboys struggled to stop the run in 2022. So drafting Smith, who posted PFF grades of 75.0 or better in each of the past two seasons, made sense.

PFT -- Rank: 10

Know why this is a crucial year for the Cowboys? They've won 24 regular-season games in the last two years, then scored 29 points in eight quarters in two playoff losses to the Niners. Dak Prescott's got to do something about that, now.

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