Broaddus Breakdown

Cox had 12 tackles for loss and five sacks last year at Mississippi State.

Name: Fletcher Cox
Position: Defensive End
College: Mississippi State
Height/Weight: 6-4 / 298

Initial Take:
He will normally line up at defensive end but has also played inside as a tackle. Initially, I didn't think he had the quickness to get the edge as a rusher but he did a much better job of this against Alabama and Kentucky. He has a tendency to play tall out of the stance but makes up for it by playing with power and his effort. I was impressed with the way he never stopped working to try and get to the ball. Cox is not a one-trick pony, but like some of the ends in the draft, he is going to need to develop some pass-rush moves.

Strengths:
His best move was the spin where he was able to get the tackle's weight on the outside foot then come back inside to free himself ... Was able to work this move against LSU and Kentucky with some success ... Did a nice job when he was used in games with twist stunts ... Had some sharpness to his rush ... Has a feel for how to rush tight to the stunt ... Uses his hands and upper-body strength to control blockers ... Really can hold the point of attack. Against Alabama and Kentucky he was able to split the double team blocks and get in on the plays ... Fights to keep from getting hooked on the edge; doesn't allow the blocker to get to his outside shoulder ... Works down the line to find the ball.

Weaknesses:
Only saw one time where he didn't show good awareness, when he got fooled on a waggle and the ball got outside ... Can get walled or washed down away from the play when on the move, but will get up off the ground quickly when he gets cut ... There is power in his game, both run and pass, but got knocked around in the Georgia game more than the others which surprised me a bit. Worked around blockers better against Alabama and Kentucky, which was probably his best games for this.

Final Take:
Usually have had problems in my scouting career with defensive linemen from Mississippi State, but Cox is a really productive player and deserves to be mentioned when the Cowboys select in the first round of this draft. His ability and traits are those of what you would like to have as a base end in a 3-4, plus he can give you some quality plays inside in the nickel as a defensive tackle. A few weeks ago, given the choice between Cox and Brockers, I had a feeling that they would lean toward Brockers, but I think that has changed now. Cox has elevated over Brockers and will probably be the first defensive lineman off the board.

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