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Role Call: Speed, Physicality Could Propel Mandell


(Editor's Note: With the offseason program in the rearview mirror, it's time to look ahead. As part of the preparation for training camp, this series will introduce 25 key players who are new to the Cowboys' roster, rookies and veterans alike. We'll continue with defensive back D'Angelo Mandell.)

How He Got Here: The BYU standout signed as an undrafted free agent following the conclusion of April's NFL Draft. Mandell grew up in San Diego, California where he starred as a defensive back and track star at Del Norte High School. His track events included running the 100, 200 and 400-meter events, catching the attention of multiple power five schools before settling upon BYU. Upon arriving in Provo, he quickly earned snaps on special teams in 2019 before seeing his responsibilities grow throughout his career. He finished with 53 appearances and 24 starts over his career with the Cougars, including 79 tackles and three tackles for loss.

What's Next: It's no secret that Mandell will enter a crowded secondary. With the offseason acquisitions of Stephon Gilmore and Eric Scott Jr., the pressure is on for every young defensive back trying to make the roster. Especially as an undrafted free agent. Mandell plays with an impressive level of quickness to his game. The track speed shows on film, and he has an ability to play in coverage outside. He could possibly fit well in the slot as well with his 6-foot-1 frame. Additionally, there is a willingness to come up and make a tackle that could help him find some reps on special teams early in training camp.

Bet You Didn't Know: Mandell originally committed to BYU in 2017 before leaving the team because of a personal decision. He spent a year reflecting on his career, while bagging groceries, bussing tables, and selling shoes to help his family in San Diego before returning to BYU for a remarkable collegiate career.

Quotable: "On the field I've been really proud of the things he's done. Improving his playing ability and improving his level of trust that he's gained from his teammates and coaches. I'm just looking for him to take off from this moment." BYU head coach Kalani Sitake said of Mandell during an interview with BYU Sports Nation.

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