The defensive overhaul continues for the Dallas Cowboys as they selected their fourth defender in as many picks when they grabbed Iowa defensive end Chauncey Golston with the 84th pick in the third round of 2021 NFL Draft. In drafting Golston, the Cowboys continued their mission to improve their defense, and this time the aim was taking a pass rusher for the edge.
Landing Golston doesn’t feel like a flashy pick for Dallas with their second of three third round picks, but the Iowa standout will bring a strong workman-like mentality at DE. The Cowboys were in the middle of the pack in sacks in 2020 and they had a need for another pass rusher who can get after the quarterback.
If it wasn’t evident before, the Cowboys clearly did not appreciate the lack of depth that they had along the defensive line. Golston was the second defensive linemen that the Cowboys selected in the third round, joining defensive tackle Osa Odighizuwa, who was taken nine picks earlier.
Dallas was missing a third pass rusher behind starters DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory, and Golston can be part of the rotation as the team looks for a more permanent answer. Golston had 5.5 sacks in a shortened senior season and his tape shows that he wins with a combination of power and length.
As a team captain at Iowa, Golston brings an impressive attitude and a relentless effort. The Cowboys can use him both inside and outside along the defensive line, so his versatility is something the team seemed to covet.
While he likely won’t lead the team in sacks, Golston should be a solid contributor for a team in need of more pass rush options.
Golston shouldn’t be counted on to be a starter with the Cowboys in 2021, but he should compete for snaps as a rookie. The Cowboys signed veterans Tarell Basham and Carlos Watkins this offseason to fortify the line, and the team still has second-year defensive end Bradlee Anae and third-year pass rusher Dorance Armstrong Jr., but Golston has the potential to work his way into a larger role as the season progresses.
Dallas cannot survive by playing Lawrence and Gregory for too many snaps next season. Gregory is still working his way into a role as a full time starter as a pro and Lawrence just turned 29-years old.
The Cowboys would be wise to not overuse their starting defensive ends and Golston can be a valuable part of a rotation. The former Iowa Hawkeye has the ability to get to the quarterback in various ways which should fill a need for Dallas.
The goal coming into the draft was for the Cowboys to improve the defense and Golston should help. Dallas is hoping that they’ve finally addressed their depth issue at defensive end with the selection of Chauncey Golston.
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