5-11, 190, 4.4
Projected Draft Position: Late 2nd Round
The second round of the NFL Draft this year for the Dallas Cowboys will be as intriguing as any one in recent memory.
Why you ask?
Because there are several glaring holes that must be filled, and the organization could go in one of three possible directions with either the first or second round pick.
The first round, the Cowboys could go either with a running back or help on the offensive line. As documented here on SilverStarDigest last week, we believe that decision will be made pending the availability of Virginia Tech running back Kevin Jones.
Simply put, if he's there, he'll be taken by the Cowboys, if he's not, the organization will likely look for help up front.
The second round could go the way of whichever way the first round doesn't go or it could go the way of cornerback, where the recent departure of Mario Edwards is still being felt in Valley Ranch.
|Ahmad Carroll was a two year starter and a NCAA sprint champion at Arkansas. He posted 43 tackles, 3 interceptions and 6 passes defended last year.|
Carroll has as much natural physical ability as any defensive back available, even if he never reached his full potential in three years at Arkansas.
"Carroll is an explosive corner that shuts down opposing receivers," notes NFL Draft Expert Tony Pauline. "He's a guy that can stay with any receiver step for step at any point on the field."
"He also possesses an explosive break on the pass and nicely positions himself to make a play on the ball."
Carroll recorded 43 tackles and a team-high three interceptions last season for the Razorbacks.
The first-team All-SEC selection also racked up six tackles for loss, seven pass deflections and five quarterback hurries. In his three-year career at Arkansas, he started 31 games and garnered 145 tackles, 29 pass deflections and four interceptions.
Carroll also has blazing speed, the likes of which haven't been seen in Dallas since the days of Deion Sanders. In fact, Carroll captured All-America honors in both the 100 and 200 meters last spring, and was generally considered one of the fastest players in college football the last three seasons.
The knock on him however is that he never fully developed into the "star" that many thought he would become out of high school. Nicknamed "Batman" at the time, Carroll was always a solid, if not generally unspectacular performer at Arkansas.
"He's improved his overall game the past three seasons and possesses a high upside for the next level," adds Pauline. "But he clearly could have been better served by finishing out his college career. He could possibly have moved into the first round in 2005 even."
With Mario Edwards out of the equation, the Cowboys are searching for help at cornerback this offseason. Clearly, guys like Andrew Davison, Pete Hunter, and Sam Mitchell aren't truly being considered a long-term answer.
They'll look for help in the draft on April 24th, and rest assured if Ahmad Carroll is available when the Cowboys go on the clock, he'll be given a hard look.
He's got too much of an upside not to.