The frightening reality the Cowboys now face as the NFL draft approaches More Oh, and the Cowboys need a starting left guard now that Cooper has signed with San Francisco, and depth is needed along the defensive line and at tight end. Dallas can help itself by finding multiple starters with its first three picks. That isn’t always easy.
But in 2016, the Cowboys’ strong draft paved the way for an NFC East title and a 13-3 regular season. Dallas used the No. 4 pick on running back Ezekiel Elliott and drafted its new franchise quarterback in the fourth round in Dak Prescott. In between, the Cowboys selected Smith in the second round and immediate defensive tackle starter Maliek Collins in the third round.
Ballard said he’s also open to moving further down the draft board. After initially feeling like he wouldn’t want to fall out of the Top 10, Ballard said that he’s more willing to do so because the team has identified eight non-quarterbacks they believe are “premium” players at the top of the draft. A trade down that nets one of them and more picks to fill out a thin roster would work well, but the benefits may be harder to see on the field if the Colts’ bet on Luck goes the other way again this year.
He was born 60 seconds after his identical twin brother, Shaquill, with a left hand that never fully developed. While he was still in the womb, he was affected by a rare condition called amniotic band syndrome, in which strands from the amniotic sac separate and entangle parts of the fetus. His hand was ultimately amputated when he was 4 years old.
That, however, hasn’t deterred Griffin from carrying on in life as if he never had a disability at all. That includes playing organized football at a high level, despite countless coaches taking a first look at him and wondering how in the world he was going to be able to properly contribute to their respective team playing with only one hand.
Erik Chinander, who was Griffin’s defensive coordinator at Central Florida, represents a perfect (and typical) example of what Griffin has faced his entire life. Chinander, who’s now at Nebraska, came to Central Florida along with head coach Scott Frost in 2016, Griffin’s junior year, took one look at him and wondered, How is this going to work?