Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Dallas Cowboys [Print without images]

Saturday, May 10, 2014
Cowboys pick Anthony Hitchens in fourth

By Calvin Watkins

IRVING, Texas -- The pick: Anthony Hitchens, outside linebacker Iowa.

My take: It looks like the Cowboys picked up a weakside linebacker to compete with Bruce Carter and to get some time on special teams. The Cowboys liked Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier in the first round but when Pittsburgh took him, they moved on and selected Zack Martin, a tackle from Notre Dame. The Cowboys wanted Shazier to play weakside linebacker and pair him up with Sean Lee, the middle linebacker. But now, the Cowboys have taken Hitchens, who averaged 8.6 tackles per game in the Big Ten. The Cowboys not only want to improve the depth along the defensive line, but at the linebacker position as well. With Justin Durant and Carter entering important seasons with the Cowboys in 2014, creating competition at that position has become an important deal for the Cowboys.

Notable: Last season at Iowa, Hitchens finished with a team-leading 112 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles. ... He earned Iowa's MVP, Defense in 2013 and he won the Hayden Fry "Extra Heartbeat" Award, defense.