Mock Draft Roundup 3.0: No Clear Consensus On 27th Pick As Draft Nears

IRVING, Texas – There's an old adage that the letters "NFL" stand for "Not For Long," and it can just as easily be applied to the world of mock drafts.

Two weeks ago when we checked in with various analyst's opinions on what Dallas would do with its No. 27 pick, we had a pretty convincing consensus. An overwhelming majority of mockers selected a defensive tackle for the Cowboys, and four of 12 mock drafts had them taking Texas defensive tackle Malcom Brown.

Fast forward two weeks, and everything has changed. Of the 12 mock selections below, only two have the Cowboys taking a defensive tackle, and only one has stuck with previous selection of Brown.

Instead, it's clear that everyone is trying to determine the best possible options. It's common knowledge that Dallas needs defensive backs and pass-rushers, and there is obviously the enticing option of replacing DeMarco Murray with a running back.

All 12 mocks have the Cowboys selecting one of those three positions – but there's very little agreement in the picks. Three of 12 publications have mocked Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon. Other than that, it's anyone's guess which way this goes.

Date of Mock:April 9
Pick:UConn CB Byron Jones
Comment:"The Cowboys are clearly in win-now mode, and their ability to run the ball and effectively create points on offense really isn't a question mark for me. While the defensive line is an area they can improve, I think the secondary is a bigger concern, and I love the versatility that Jones can offer them as a corner who can be moved around and also play safety if that's where they need him. This is one of the best athletes in the draft, but with Jones, it's not just about the workouts, because everything you see at the NFL Combine is also evident on tape. He has great football instincts and star upside. There are going to be pass-rushers available in Round 2, and running back help is there far into the later rounds, especially with the offensive line the Cowboys have in place."

Date of Mock:April 6
Pick:Georgia RB Todd Gurley
Comment: "The loss of DeMarco Murray and his 392 carries and 1,845 yards leaves a pressing need at running back for Dallas. Gurley might not be ready to go at the start of the season, but his long-term potential is vast. The Cowboys could also be looking for a replacement for defensive tackle Nick Hayden in the first round, and there will be options."

Date of Mock:April 6
Pick:Washington CB Marcus Peters
Comment: "Brandon Carr has disappointed and Morris Claiborne has been the one blemish on an otherwise flawless first-round resume for the Cowboys the past five years, making cornerback a need in this year's draft. Peters has his baggage, but the reward outweighs the risk at this point."

Date of Mock:April 8
Pick:Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon
Comment: "The Cowboys need more playmakers on the defensive side of the ball if they truly want to compete for a championship. However, U-T Sports Editor Todd Adams sums up Jerry Jones perfectly: "He loves his skill players." I worry about Gordon's usage at Wisconsin. His total touches were approaching 700, and you'd like to draft a running back below 500. It's really hard to argue with 2,587 yards and 29 touchdowns though. Top needs: CB, DL, RB"

Date of Mock:April 8
Pick:Florida State DT Eddie Goldman
Comment: "Goldman is a powerhouse interior lineman who might not rush the passer as well as defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli might like, but he can bring the ruckus against the run."

Date of Mock:April 5
Pick:UCLA DE Owamagbe Odighizuwa
Comment: "Given the loss of DeMarco Murray to the hated Eagles, it would be easy for Jerry Jones and Co. to roll the dice on Georgia's Todd Gurley with this pick. Another priority would be to build the defensive line. Odighizuwa's power and motor make him an ideal complement to last year's second round pick Demarcus Lawrence."

Date of Mock:April 6
Pick:Gordon
Comment: "It's imposssible to think any back can have the production that DeMarco Murray had in 2014, but Gordon helps ease the pain of the defection."

Date of Mock:April 8
Pick:Florida State CB Ronald Darby
Comment:"The Cowboys desperately need help at cornerback. Morris Claiborne has been a huge disappointment, while Brandon Carr is extremely overpaid. Dallas could target a potential upgrade at the end of the first round."

Date of Mock:April 8
Pick:Wake Forest CB Kevin Johnson
Comment:"ProFootballFocus pretty well spells out the dilemma at CB for America's Team: Brandon Carr (-8.8 in pass coverage) did not play up to his $50MM contract, nor did the injured Morris Claiborne (-5.0 in pass coverage) play up to his 2012 #6 overall draft pick status. Will Carr be willing to take a "Doug Free"-type pay cut? Will Claiborne shed his bust status? Orlando Scandrick sure would like to know, because Sterling Moore was not tendered and Corey White was signed for depth. Dallas finished 26th in the league against the pass, allowing 250 yards per game; the basis of Marinelli's defensive philosophy is turnovers and the CB position as a group only accounted for 3 of the Cowboys' 18 total interceptions in 2014. Kevin Johnson brings size and run support, as well as coverage abilities, to the Cowboy defensive backfield."

Date of Mock:March 27
Pick:Gordon
Comment: "With Murray departed to Philadelphia, the Cowboys brought in Darren McFadden to fill the void. Considering the ball-carrier's history, that's a risky move. Perhaps owner Jerry Jones thinks so as well, as he recently spoke about the possibility of drafting a running back, via DallasCowboys.com. Melvin Gordon is an NFL-ready player who can make an immediate impact in Dallas. If he's there at No. 27 overall, he may be too tough to pass up."

Date of Mock:April 7
Pick:Kentucky DE Alvin "Bud" Dupree
Comment: "This is lower than where I think Dupree should go, but quality players slip in the draft every year. There is a line of thought that the Cowboys will use this pick to draft a running back, and maybe they will. But they can also add a really solid defensive end in Dupree here while still having the opportunity to land a quality running back in round two."

Date of Mock:March 31
Pick:Texas DT Malcom Brown
Comment: "With Greg Hardy added outside, Brown would be a great fit inside."

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