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Draft Central | 2022

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How Sam Williams Will Fit Into Dan Quinn's System


A full breakdown of the Cowboys' second-round draft pick (No. 56 overall) Friday night:

  • Name: Sam Williams
  • Position: Edge Rusher
  • College: Ole Miss
  • Height/Weight: 6-3 / 261

The Rundown: He's extremely athletic for a pass-rusher, including his 4.46 time in the 40 and a 36-inch vertical leap. On the field, he had 12.5 sacks for Ole Miss in 2021, breaking a 31-year-old school record for a single season.

The downside with Williams is some off-the-field issues that led to a 2020 suspension from Ole Miss after an arrest for sexual battery, though the charges were dropped and he was later reinstated. But that alone likely scared off many teams and pushed him into the second round. Just like a year ago when the Cowboys drafted a player like Josh Ball, they've done extensive homework and obviously feel comfortable with his character to take him in the second round.

How He Fits In: Any time you can land a player with edge-rush ability, it's a win. And that's how the Cowboys must feel about adding Williams, even though they signed Dante Fowler Jr. and Dorance Armstrong in free agency. They did lose Randy Gregory and who knows who much Micah Parsons will rush off the edge. But Williams gives them yet another player who can do that. He wouldn't have to start right away but would find his way into different packages.

Kyle Youmans' Report: Three-year star on the Ole Miss defense, Williams overcame a rough background and little recruiting attention out of high school to become one of the most feared defenders in the SEC. His 6-foot-3 frame and long arms are ideal for the position while he showcases 4.46 speed and overall athleticism off the edge. Earned first team All-SEC honors in his final year and as his off the field worries have been resolved, he continues to shoot up draft boards as an immediate contributor in the league.

Next Cowboys Pick: 3rd Round (88th overall)

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