Analysis: In my first mock draft I had Tyron Smith going to the Cowboys at this spot, but two weeks later, I don’t believe that will be the case. Smith has some outstanding traits, as does Catronzo, but I feel they are looking for a tough, smart, steady, consistent performer. The Cowboys have studied the whole body of work here and that’s why I feel they will select Castonzo. With Julio Jones on the board, the possibility of trading down looms, as well.
Broaddus has no doubt talked this through with his connections at Valley Ranch, but the thought process makes sense. Jerry Jones will not concede that the Cowboys will use 2011 as a rebuilding year. He has a franchise QB and a handful of stars in their prime. If he drafts an offensive lineman in the first round, that guy has to be a starter. The comfort level with installing Castonzo at right tackle has to be higher than doing so with an early entry guy like Smith.
This draft seems to hit its first fork at No. 5 and Arizona.They may trade out or go with the one remaining elite talent on the board. Or they may just draft Blaine Gabbert, as Broaddus projects. Their decision will send the draft in a distinctly different direction. With Gabbert going fifth, Patrick Peterson falls tantalizingly close to the Cowboys at No. 7.
Broaddus has all of Smith, Prince Amukamara, Julio Jones, J.J. Watt and Cameron Jordan available for Dallas. He has Jordan falling all the way to No. 24.