While there is always going to be mystery when it comes to the NFL Draft, over the years the Dallas Cowboys have done their fans a bit of a favor and tipped their hands so to speak. Not only have they (not once, but twice) given us a look at their draft boards after that year’s draft was completed, but in their actions they’ve also alerted us to some key tells about their actions. In our must-read post from earlier in the off-season “ "6 Draft Tendencies and Tells'' we listed the following:
This is by no means an end-all be-all list. Morris Claiborne wasn’t invited to the Ranch, and Dallas spend two picks to acquire him. Maybe the lack of development their helped guide their hand recently, as eight of their picks over the last two years were in for official visits. In that vein, we’ll be bringing you in-depth looks at the draft candidates that Dallas schedules for visits, so that you can be better informed about the small sample size many of the next group of Cowboys will likely come from.
Name: Owamagbe Odighizuwa Position: Defensive End School: UCLA Height: 6’3” Weight: 267 LBs Intangibles/Honors: Team Co-Captain - 2014 Second Team All-Pac-12(Coaches) - 2014 Honorable Mention Academic All Conference - 2014 Paul I Wellman Award for All-Around Excellence - 2014 Bobby Field UCLA Captains Award - 2014 Missed Season due to hip injuries - 2013 UCLA Maggie Gilbert Academic Achievement Award Winner - 2012 Pac-12 All-Freshman Team (Rivals.com) - 2010 Defensive Tri-Winner of UCLA John Boncheff Jr. Memorial Award (Rookie of the Year) - 2010 Three Sport Letterman in High School (Basketball, Football, Track & Field) pSparq Score: 142.4 Z-Score: 1.7 NFL Percentile: 95.6 pSparq is an approximation of the “Sparq Score” metric invented by NIKE (with the help of former USC and current Seattle Seahawks Head Coach, Pete Carroll), designed as a way to standardize athletic testing of High School athletes and interpret their athleticism with a sport specific formula. For more on pSparq,(and the man behind the math Zach Whitman) check out 3sigmaathlete.com
Measurables vs others at his position:
Force Player?: Yes Note: For more information on Force Players, how they’re classified, and the correlation to success for edge rushers, listen to the founder of the method, Justis Mosqueda, on Josh Norris’ Process the Process Podcast
Games Studied: Virginia, USC, Texas, Arizona State Pass Rush: Owamagbe Odighizuha played multiple positions up and down the defensive line for the UCLA Bruins. Played inside at a 4 technique or even a 3 technique similar to Rod Marinelli’s under tackle in certain pass situations and was a major mismatch inside, but played the majority of his snaps at either Left DE or Right DE. When he had the chance to line up in a true 7 or even 9 technique he showed very good get off, and the explosiveness that earned him the Force Player designation. When he is able to rush half of the blocker, attacking their shoulder, inside or outside, he has a very good chance of winning. Needs to improve his consistency with his hands in disengaging from blockers on his rush, although in the Arizona State game he did a good job of rushing with power, and then shedding the tackle, cutting inside and attacking the QB. He has a spin move that he threw 3 or 4 times against Arizona State that was not pretty, and didn’t gain him any advantage over the blockers, although I like the idea for him, as a complimentary move, if it is developed further. There were times when he beat his man, but struggled to finish the play whether it was missing the tackle or mis-playing the QB in the pocket. Run Game: Odighizuwa is very stout against the run, using his length and lower body strength to hold up, and has heavy hands as he stuns blockers at the point of attack. Has the quickness to penetrate as well, shooting gaps inside to put himself in position for a tackle for loss.
Conclusion/Cowboys Projection: Even with the signing of Greg Hardy, the Cowboys should still be in search of additional pass rushers. Odighizuwa, if he is available at 27 would be exactly the kind of player they could team with Demarcus Lawrence to have a dynamic duo of bookend rushers for a number of years, as they look to turn the defense into a championship unit. In 2015 he would rotate with Lawrence at the Left Defensive End spot, and take over the starting spot in the event that Hardy departs after 2015 and Lawrence returns to the right side.
The Dallas Cowboys will, as usual, open the 2015 preseason schedule out on the West Coast, starting from camp in Oxnard and then starting the game schedule with a Week 1 visit to San Diego (week of Aug. 15) and a Week 2 visit to San Francisco (week of Aug. 22).
Assuming the Cowboys stay the month in Oxnard, they will likely break camp at the end of August, in time to return to DFW for the third preseason game against the Vikings at AT&T Stadium (on the weekend of Aug. 29) -- where All-Pro running back Adrian Peterson might be on the field ... for somebody.
Amid talk of AD wanting out of Minnesota, the odds are he will be a Viking that day in a game that is usually the preseason "tune-up'' for NFL teams.
Dallas will close the preseason with a visit from inner-state rival Houston (week of Sept. 5).
The entire regular-season schedule, sources tell CowboysHQ.com, is planned for a release around April 17.
These Top-10 FishTips will carry you through the week. ... The Cowboys certainly aren't hiding at least a portion of their draft intentions, with the 30-man list of national visitors reportedly including a huge chunk of the available running backs ... How do Dallas' national visits coordinate with who they eventually drafts? KD examines. ... Be sure to stay tuned to 105.3 The Fan for all your radio insights and keep it right here at CowboysHQ for hard-hitting commentary and outstanding analysis.