Cowboys take another second-round risk by selecting Sam Williams 56 overall pick

FRISCO – Earlier in the week, Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones discussed lower risks in the NFL draft.

Maybe Jones was just messing with the media during the predraft news conference. On Day 1 of the NFL Draft, the Cowboys have been selected to stay at No. One of the 15 players to get the 24 and not the risk draft capital they had on first-round grades.

Instead, the Cowboys selected tackle / guard Tyler Smith from Tulsa. You could say the Cowboys drafted a player who could make a second-round pick in the bottom of the first round.

The Cowboys took a risk in selecting defensive end Sam Williams from Ole Miss in the second round pick on Friday night. 56 overall.

Williams is an excellent football player. He enters his rookie season with being named first-team All-SEC. He was a third-team All-American by the Associated Press. Williams compiled 57 total tackles, the most by an Ole Miss defensive lineman since 2018. He tied the school record last season with 10 sacks and finished the year ranked 10th nationally with four forced fumbles. At the combine, he produced a 4.46 40 with a 32 inch vertical jump. Williams wanted a faster time at his pro day and ran again with a sprite like 4.38 40.

Everything bleeds this is a perfect selection for the Cowboys needing help along the edges of the defensive line.

Yet, it is also another second-round risk.

In July 2020, Williams was suspended from the Ole Miss football team for a charge of sexual battery according to the Clarion Ledger (Jackson, Miss.). Williams, being charged in July of 2020, was reinstated that no charges were filed after September.

“It’s the past, obviously I didn’t do anything,” Williams said in a Friday night conference call. “And now I’m just hey, it’s a new life, a whole new beginning ahead of me and that’s what I’m looking for in a new area with a great coaches and great teammates and my family. “

Williams said NFL teams asked him about the incident. As it stands there are no known pending legal issues.

Jerry Jones is confident in the evaluation of Williams. The two met in Las Vegas at the NFLPA game and that interaction, in addition to the investigations the team conducted, helped the team take him.

“He’s got a lot of people that are on his team that are real high quality people,” Jones said

Drafting Williams is yet another risky second-round pick by the Cowboys. Some have worked out well while others have not.

Last year, the Cowboys spent a second-round pick on Kentucky cornerback Kelvin Joseph. It was a difficult rookie season for Joseph on and off the field. His playing status is uncertain, though he continues to workout at The Star during voluntary workouts while awaiting potential charges for his involvement in a homicide in March.

The Cowboys are taking a patience approach here with Joseph, hopeful charges will not be filed and that quite possibly he can continue playing for them. It is subject to some discipline from the NFL for potential violations to the league conduct policy.

Joseph is not the only second-round pick that has endured problems. You can go back to 2015 when the Cowboys snagged defensive end Randy Gregory from Nebraska knowing he failed drug tests.

Jaylon Smith was a 2016 selection but that risk was about to recover from a near-career-ending knee injury that cost him his rookie season.

Of course, you can look at the unsettled career or 2019 second-rounder Trysten Hill, a defensive tackle who has flashed on the field but lacks consistency.

Every player is risky but when you have a health or an off-the-field problem it raises the intensity of it.

Williams is the latest to receive scrutiny for an off-the-field issue in college that prompted NFL teams to inquire about it.

The Cowboys are hopeful Williams can have a successful career with their franchise.

Yet, Williams knows the sexual battery charge has damaged his reputation.

“Of course,” Williams said about his rep being harmed. “Hey, that ‘s anybody. If something like that came on anybody, I believe they would kinda feel like that. Hey i got another shot at life that i’m not going to determine who the person i am. I pray God will not put a label on me but I am thankful for a team that believes in me. “

So once again, the Cowboys will take a risk on a second-round pick they hope will have no problems.


More from Day 2 of the NFL Draft

– Cowboys accomplish a mission they have not acknowledged by addressing needs over drafts’ first 2 days

– Cowboys select former Ole Miss DE Sam Williams at no. 56 overall in NFL draft

– Cowboys select former South Alabama WR Jalen Tolbert at No. 88 overall in NFL draft

– ‘Don’t be hatin’ ‘: Emmitt Smith quits Dallas Cowboys haters before third-round pick

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