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Bucky Brooks: Scouting Report on Gerald McCoy


(Editor's Note: The team welcomes Bucky Brooks to the staff. Bucky brings a wealth of experience, not only as a former NFL player of five seasons, but also as a scout and on the pro personnel side for two teams. In the last decade, Brooks has worked in the media, including the NFL Network. Bucky will provide his own analysis and opinions of the Cowboys but also the entire NFL. Today, he breaks down one of the new free-agent signings in defensive tackle Gerald McCoy.)

  • Name: Gerald McCoy
  • Position: DT
  • College: Oklahoma
  • Height: 6-4
  • Weight: 300
  • Season: 11th
  • Games Studied: 2019 (Panthers vs. Buccaneers, Falcons, and Redskins)


McCoy is a versatile defensive tackle with a game built on strength, power, and explosiveness. After entering the league as an ultra-athletic, one-gap penetrator with exceptional first-step quickness and burst, he has transitioned into more of a power player in his later years. As a pass rusher, he wins with a combination of outstanding initial quickness and superb hand skills at the point of attack. McCoy will work a series of arm overs, bull-rushes, and two-handed swipe maneuvers to separate from blockers at the line of scrimmage. He gives great effort to finish at the quarterback but he lacks the stamina or endurance to consistently finish at the ball.

As a run defender, McCoy is stout at the point of attack against single blocks and double teams. He generally holds the point and isn't easily moved off of his spot. The veteran will hustle to the ball as a sideline to sideline player but his effort wanes as he logs more snaps during the game.


  • Outstanding initial quickness and burst
  • Polished technician with a vast repertoire of rush moves
  • Stout and sturdy run defender
  • Versatile defender capable of playing anywhere from nose tackle to a five-technique defensive tackle (over the tackle)
  • Leadership


  • More of a "flasher" than a consistent disruptive presence
  • Lacks the stamina to be a productive every-down player

What are scouts saying:

McCoy has added some power to his game but is still disruptive as a one-gap penetrator due to his quickness and burst. He is playing a little heavier than he did early on and that limits his ability to consistently get on edges and finish. That said, he is still a solid player with two or three good years left.

How does he fit in with the Cowboys?

McCoy spent last season playing both defensive tackle spots for the Carolina Panthers in a hybrid 3-4 defense. He will provide the Cowboys with an inside pass rush presence as an active interior defender with outstanding hands and a high-revving motor. On passing downs, he could thrive as a 3-technique in sub-packages as he faces more one-on-one blocks due to the attention drawn by Demarcus Lawrence on the outside. Although McCoy isn't the disruptive force that he once was with Buccaneers, he's a solid starter with flash playmaking ability and leadership skills.

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