The Cowboys have a plethora of needs to take care of in the NFL Draft that kicks off on Thursday night in Las Vegas. At the forefront are the left guard and wide receiver spots, which many believe the Cowboys could address in the first two rounds.
Thanks to negotiations between the Cowboys and Randy Gregory that turned into him leaving for Denver, edge rusher is also a premium position for Dallas to look into. Edge rusher Sam Williams out of Ole Miss has been a popular choice for the Cowboys in mock drafts. However, Micheal Clemons out of Texas A&M, also provides an intriguing option in the mid-rounds.
Clemons went the JUCO route to begin his college career in 2016 at Cisco Junior College in Cisco, Texas. In six games, Clemons racked up 2.5 sacks and 8.5 tackles for loss. The next stop for Clemons would be in Lubbock, Texas with the Aggies in which he would be faced with much tougher competition.
As a sophomore in 2017, Clemons appeared in all 13 games for the Aggies and tallied 19 tackles (three tackles for loss) and a sack. Clemons would then redshirt in 2018.
Clemons started nine of the 11 games he played in during the 2019 season and logged 28 tackles and a half-sack. After only playing in five games the next due to an ankle injury that required surgery, Clemons had his best season as a graduate student in 2021 with 32 tackles (11 tackles for loss) and seven sacks. All career highs.
Micheal Clemons (DE- Tx A&M)= a beast that is going wayyy higher than draft Twitter currently recognizes.— Erik Burkhardt (@ErikBurkhardt) April 6, 2022
He had the privilege to spend time w the Boss today on his 3rd 30-visit & 4 others scheduled + 4 private workouts to come. Special young man. 📈 pic.twitter.com/pTQaxWfRbF
Clemons is a raw prospect that has some work to do. One of the knocks on him is that he plays too tall and upright which makes it easy for offensive linemen to get a hand on him. He doesn’t have a great bend coming off of the edge either and can struggle with his change of direction.
There are several positives to Clemons. He packs a lot of power and explosiveness coming off of the line of scrimmage. Clemons is a versatile defender as well as he spent time on the edge and slid inside to play defensive tackle during his days with the Aggies. He can set the edge against the run and uses his hands well to defeat blocks.
The Cowboys re-signed Dorance Armstrong and acquired Dante Fowler in free agency but more depth is needed. If Clemons was to be picked at some point by the Cowboys he would challenge Armstrong and Fowler for the starting role opposite DeMarcus Lawrence.
In 2021, the Cowboys finished with 41 sacks as a team, which ranked 14th. Clemons would certainly assist in getting those numbers to increase. Also, the Cowboys allowed over 100 yards rushing in 11 of their final 12 games last season. So, Clemons and his ability to be effective against the run could help turn that weakness into a strength for Dallas.
Clemons was a part of the 30 players the Cowboys brought into their facility before the draft. The Cowboys covet those visits, so if Clemons is there in the mid-rounds and Dallas hasn’t addressed the edge rusher spot he could likely be selected.
Feature image via Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports