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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
McShay's 2nd round fits for Cowboys

By Todd Archer

IRVING, Texas -- In his mock drafts, ESPN Insider Todd McShay has had the Dallas Cowboys sticking on the defensive side of the ball.

In his four mock drafts, he has had Timmy Jernigan (twice), Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Stephon Tuitt going to the Cowboys in the first round.

In his most recent Insider piece on ESPN.com Insider, McShay mentioned prospects that might be the best fit with a team. After listing eight fits, which includes defensive tackle Aaron Donald going to the Chicago Bears (which might upset some Cowboys fans), he has pass rushers Dee Ford and Jeremiah Attaochu, as fits for the Cowboys in the second round.

The Cowboys need pass-rushers. Ford had quite a push at the Senior Bowl and has speed to burn. Attaochu had 32 sacks at Georgia Tech.

They are also something of tweeners. Ford is 6-2, 240 pounds. Attaochu is 6-3, 252 pounds. That is light even for the right defensive end spots in Rod Marinelli’s scheme. They could be pass-rush specialists as rookies and grow into full-time roles later as they pack on more weight.

But Marinelli’s better right defensive ends have been Simeon Rice and Julius Peppers. Rice was 6-5, 268 pounds. Peppers, who was courted by the Cowboys as a free agent to a small degree, is 6-6, 283 pounds. They are the prototypes and special talents.

In the second round, the Cowboys could take a chance on players that might not fit the prototype but can do one thing exceptionally well.

Ford and Attaochu could also be part of the future if the Cowboys make wholesale coaching and scheme changes after the 2014 season.