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Mailbag: Regrading Last 2 Drafts? Future OT Option?


Is often said that it takes years to truly grade a draft class, but is it safe to say that looking back the Cowboys ended up with the top two defensive players in the 2020 and 2021 drafts with Trevon Diggs & Micah Parsons? JOHN WALKER / LAGO VISTA, TX

Rob: Parsons without question has been the best rookie defender of this year's class, and Diggs is certainly having the best season of any defensive draft pick from 2020. I still think you have to put Chase Young (Washington) right in the "best" conversation too, even though he's had a tough year with injuries. I agree with the general notion that it takes at least three years to fully grade a class. It'll be fun to see both players continue to grow within the division.

David: I think you have to be careful proclaiming things like that too early. Both of these guys are off to amazing starts, and the Cowboys deserve a ton of credit for drafting them. But Chase Young, A.J. Terrell, Patrick Surtain II and Jaelan Phillips all look like fantastic young players, too. That's not a knock on Micah or Trevon, it's just hard to project what we'll be saying in two years — let alone in five to 10 years.

Josh Ball never seems to be mentioned when discussions of future offensive tackles are made. I know he has been injured this year, but has there been any evaluation of his talent to determine if he fits into future plans? — CHARLES HARRISON / LAKEWAY, UT

Rob: It's just hard to know. He got hurt the third week of training camp. That means so far he's only been in pads a few times as a pro. When the Cowboys drafted him, they thought he had the physical traits to play either side. Obviously this looks like a redshirt year of sorts because of the injury, but he'll have a chance to compete for a spot next year. Don't think that precludes the Cowboys from maybe looking at tackle in the draft again, though.

David: Josh Ball seems to be taking a redshirt year, which is probably a good thing. He looked like a guy who would need some time to adjust to the curve of the NFL game. My philosophy is always this: I'm never going to write a guy off. But when it comes time to make major moves to address a position, I'm not going to lean on a fourth-round pick as my primary course of action. If Josh Ball develops into a solid player, they'll be able to find a use for him, and it will be another wonderful job by the personnel department. But you're not going to pass up a chance to draft the next Tyron Smith because of that.

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