The Dallas Cowboys have had their fair share of success over the last decade when it comes to the draft.
During the 2019 season, Dallas rolled out 17 of 22 starters that were all selected by Jerry Jones and company via the draft.
Three of those players drafted by the Cowboys, happen to be from the 2017 draft class. Most fans tend to forget about that class due to the lack of star power from their first-round pick. That year Dallas selected Taco Charlton in the first round, which gives fans here a dreaded feeling.
Another reason for fans not wanting to remember that year is the fact that Dallas had 9 picks, with zero players flashing that Pro Bowl potential.
However, of the nine players selected that season, three of them have been substantial contributors for the Cowboys over the past three seasons. Coincidentally all three players also play in the secondary.
Since none of them were selected in the first round, the 2020 campaign could end up being these players’ last year playing in Dallas.
CB Chidobe Awuzie // 2017 – Round 2 Pick 60
The Colorado product arrived at a time when the Cowboys were desperate for players at the cornerback position. Some believed that Awuzie would come right in as a plug-in player. An injury early on derailed his rookie season, but he still showed potential.
Throughout his 3 seasons in Dallas, Chidobe has posted up 187 tackles to go alongside 3 career interceptions, and 2 forced fumbles. While his turnover ratio isn’t as high as many would want it to be, Chidobe is always around the ball.
However, if Chidobe wants to continue wearing the star, there needs to be a massive upgrade to his level of play. This season he’ll be in his fiercest battle since joining the Cowboys.
Byron Jones may be gone, but Dallas sought out multiple players to plug in the hole. One if which is also a second-round pick, Trevon Diggs.
CB Jourdan Lewis // 2017 – Round 3 Pick 92
Lewis came into this team as one of the more prominent voices from that 2017 class. Many remember his back and forth fights with former Cowboys All-Pro receiver, Dez Bryant. While Lewis lacks the ideal size for a corner, he more than makes up for it with his robust style of play.
On the current 2020 Cowboys roster, Lewis ranked 2nd in sacks in 2019 only behind defensive end, Demarcus Lawrence, who had 5 himself. Lewis has fought hard to create his own name while receiving limited playing time. Despite having the most interceptions (4) over the past 3 years by any Cowboys’ corner, Lewis was kept off the field by Kris Richard. It was rumored that Richard likes to have a taller corner, and due to Lewis’ size, Richard elected to bench Lewis.
Now with Richard gone, Jourdan can have his fair shake at becoming this team’s full-time nickel corner. He’ll also be having to battle it out with guys like Anthony Brown, but Lewis doesn’t shy away from the competition.
S Xavier Woods // 2017 – Round 6 Pick 191
Xavier has been the definition of getting a bang for your buck. The sixth-round pick arrived with less pressure than Lewis, and Awuzie. Woods was allowed to sit behind Byron Jones’ last year as a safety, and Jeff Heath throughout his rookie season. Yet when his number was called, Woods made sure to leave his mark out on the field.
He’s become one of the defense’s most underrated players due to the lack of turnovers as a whole unit. However, over the past three seasons, Woods leads all Dallas Cowboys defensive backs in interceptions with five of his own. His playmaking abilities seem to get lost since the defense finds themselves on the wrong end most games.
This season will be Xavier’s third season as a starter, which has all the looks of a breakout year for him. Woods claims to be in better shape heading into his 4th year and is excited about working his new partner in crime, Ha-Ha Clinton Dix.
All three of these guys are the last men standing from their draft class.
Now that they are at the end of their rope, its time for them to put their best foot forward to continue as Dallas Cowboys.
Featured Image: AP Photo/Ron Jenkins