Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State
The Cowboys might be the only team that has an argument for needing a pair of starting cornerbacks more than the Eagles. Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr, their two starters from last season, have both moved on, as well as safeties Barry Church and J.J. Wilcox. In other words, the Cowboys secondary will have to undergo the biggest facelift since [insert famous celebrity with self-image issues here].
Enter Gareon Conley, who I'm honestly surprised lasted this long in the mock draft. Considering his Eli Apple-esque rise to the top of NFL draft boards in recent weeks, it seems like there's little chance he'll be available this late in real life, making this selection all the more obvious.
He's a player we've become well acquainted with over the past months, having seen him mocked to the Eagles countless times. You've heard the nutshell analysis before: great cover corner, good ball skills, not a great tackler. In the four or five DraftBreakdown videos I hastily watched on him, this seems to mostly be the case. He seems to thrive in press coverage, and his instincts and good closing speed allow him to succeed playing off coverage as well. But while I agree he hasn't improved much as a tackler, he does display the willingness.
This isn't a great tackle by any means, but Conley's trying to take down Mike Williams here, who has 4 inches and 23 pounds on Conley and is known for his physicality. With time and pro coaching, I think there's reason to believe Conley could become an adequate tackler.
The need is there, the value is there, and the potential is there. The Cowboys would be thrilled to come away with Conley at #28, and if they do, I look forward to seeing Alshon Jeffrey winning every jump ball over him next season.
2017 BGN Mock Draft Order
1) Browns (JALupowitz): Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
2) 49ers (sports00fan00): Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford
3) Bears (gubby): Jonathan Allen, DT, Alabama
4) Jaguars (TheWhalwing): Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
5) Titans (drc242): Jamal Adams, S, LSU
6) Jets (boomorbust): Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State
7) Chargers (NowWhat?): Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State
8) Panthers (B-Potts): Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan
9) Bengals (Kiko’s Delivery Service): Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama
10) Bills (jimmyrustler): O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama
11) Saints (NotSoSlick): Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan
12) Browns (Straight Edge Sid): Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
13) Cardinals (Paulie97): Haason Reddick, LB, Temple
14) Eagles (ablesser88): Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford
15) Colts (mconner96): Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee
16) Ravens (The Man, The Myth, the Matthews!): Zach Cunningham, LB, Vanderbilt
17) Washington (kbruneault): John Ross, WR, Washington
18) Titans (mchiodo): JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR USC
19) Buccaneers (ei78): Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan
20) Broncos (NVEagleShark): Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin
21) Lions (Shark Fighter): Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama
22) Dolphins (J. Wil): Forrest Lamp, OG, Western Kentucky
23) Giants (BigWardy59): Dion Dawkins, OT, Temple
24) Raiders (big DUB): Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State
25) Texans (GotFunds): Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina
26) Seahawks (Rogmcc23): Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
27) Chiefs (B1G Cat): Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson
28) Cowboys (RegalEagle): Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State
29) Packers (Wutang_):
30) Steelers (General_Lee12):
31) Falcons (SirJon):
32) Saints (Huffs_cellmate):