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What's Up at Cornerback? Diggs' Return Looms


FRISCO, Texas — There's a lot to be excited for when looking atop the Dallas Cowboys' depth chart at cornerback. After all, DaRon Bland followed his breakout rookie season with a historic second campaign that landed him First-Team All-Pro honors and a nod as the 2023 NFL interceptions leader; and that was without fellow First-Team All-Pro Trevon Diggs on the field.

Thus my point: Diggs is on track to return for 2024, and that should only make things easier for the both of them in regards to opportunities for takeaways.

And then there's resident defensive leader Jourdan Lewis — re-signed this offseason versus joining the movement out of Dallas and into Washington with Dan Quinn. It's the most underrated signing of the offseason, and especially considering Lewis got back to top form as last season wore on.

But what of those behind the Big 3??

With that, it's time to discuss "What's Up" at cornerback in Dallas.

What We Know: In 2022, this group lost Jourdan Lewis and Anthony Brown to a devastating foot injury and struggled mightily over the rest of the season to locate impact backups on the roster. In 2023, they lost All-Pro Trevon Diggs to a torn ACL. In both instances, DaRon Bland helped save the day, but the depth on this chart needs to be ready and on high alert.

You have to love what's shaping up in the battle between Eric Scott and Caelen Carson, and with Nahshon Wright standing in their way as he heads into a contract season. Scott was a sixth-round pick in 2023 that the Cowboys traded up to get, and Carson is a current fifth-round pick with just as much potential to change the course of a game. Who wants it more?

What We Don't: Who is CB4? And no, I'm not referring to Chris Rock (Google it). Carson joins the mix, along with undrafted rookie Josh DeBerry, to add some spicy depth pieces to a position that will embrace having them in the mix. There'll be more pressure on Carson to perform fairly immediately, though in a backup capacity, given the amount of praise he's already received from the coaching staff and front office after being viewed as their "blinking light" in this year's draft.

Scott has a lot to prove in Year 2, and he looks ready to do exactly that but, adding in the fact Nahshon Wright is also trying to prove himself, head into the final year of his rookie deal, there is a lot to be determined behind Diggs, Bland and Lewis. A whole lot.

What to Watch For: There were 13 interceptions for the Cowboys cornerbacks in 2023, but nine of them belonged to one person: DaRon Bland. No other cornerback had more than two on the season. This is expected to change with Trevon Diggs back in the mix, but others will need to chime in on this stat going forward. Expect assistant head coach and defensive backs coach Al Harris, and defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, to point this out in meetings and practices this summer.

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