Jalen Jelks Jersey

EUGENE — It’s becoming a time-honored question in NFL circles this time of year: How do teams project and evaluate players that were defensive ends or outside linebackers in college but may be asked to change positions to be effective edge rushers as pros?

Oregon’s Jalen Jelks and Justin Hollins are two prime examples of players NFL teams are having to project to likely different positions in this year’s draft. Mock drafts illustrate how wide the variation can be as both Jelks and Hollins are projected to go anywhere from as high as late in the third round to as low as the seventh or even possibly a priority free agent in the case of Hollins, who led Oregon in sacks last season.

“It’s projecting, right? So it’s figuring out whether or not he has those compensating factors,” Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider said. “With Poona (Ford) it’s his length. So he’s got a natural leverage about him. He’s got a heaviness about him with his hands. He can get up and down the line of scrimmage. He went to the Senior Bowl and had a great week down there. It’s really about projecting.”

Jelks made 57 tackles with 7.5 for loss and 3.5 sacks as a senior while playing mostly 4i defensive end but is a better fit as a 5-technique end in a 4-3 or outside linebacker. His size makes is even harder for teams to projects as only been 18 edge rushers, defensive linemen or linebackers have appeared at the NFL Combine since 2010 that were at least 6-foot-5 and under 260 pounds.

Hollins had 64 tackles with 14.5 for loss including 6.5 sacks, five forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, an interception and seven pass breakups while playing outside linebacker in Oregon’s 3-4 defense last season.

With the majority of snaps being played in Nickel packages how Jelks and Hollins translate, particularly to a 4-3 base defense, is part of the analysis GMs and coaches have to do.

“If you can find guys, no matter size they are, that can rush the passer you can find roles for them,” Cincinnati Bengals general manager Duke Tobin said. “We have a guy named (Carl) Lawson who we found a role for before he got hurt. He was in that hybrid category. But if they can rush the passer, that’s the No. 1 trait that we’re looking for.”

NFL teams that made coaching changes during the offseason had to reevaluate the talent they had on their rosters first.

Take the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for example, who hired Bruce Arians as head coach and brought Todd Bowles, who was fired after coaching the New York Jets, to be defensive coordinator. Bowles played for Arians at Temple and worked for him most recently with the Arizona Cardinals so they know exactly what they want to do, but the Buccaneers have to adjust their roster to fit that, first through free agency and now the draft, where Tampa Bay drafted LSU middle linebacker Devin White No. 5 on Thursday.

“A lot of guys of guys that we would, not throw out but would be way down low on our draft board, the 4-3 D-ends that were undersized, these guys come back to life,” Tampa Bay general manager Jason Licht said. “This scheme allows those guys to make plays and to fit into a role, whether it’s first and second down or rushing the passer. Guys like Noah Spence might have new life in this scheme.”

Jalen Jelks is headed to Texas.

The former Oregon defensive end was selected by the Dallas Cowboys with the No. 241 overall pick in the seventh round of the NFL Draft Saturday afternoon.

Jelks, who had 57 tackles with 7.5 for loss and 3.5 sacks for the Ducks last season, is the fourth Oregon player chosen in this year’s draft.

“Graded very high on our board and we’re down to the end of the draft he’s still sitting there like a blinking light,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “There’s so much to like about this guy. He’s big, he’s long, he’s athletic, he plays with a relentless spirit, a great motor, a great energy, around the ball a lot. Plays the right way, has a lot of the physical traits we’re looking for in our defensive linemen. I thin it’s going to be very competitive all across that defensive front for guys to make this football team and for guys fighting for playng time.”

At the NFL Combine, Jelks ran the 40-yard dash in 4.92 seconds, 18th among edge players but tied for 25th among 49 players when including defensive linemen.

His 32.5-inch vertical jump was 14th among edge players and 22nd among 48 players when including defensive linemen, and his broad jump of 9-feet-8-inches was 17th among edge players but tied for 28th among 47 players when including defensive linemen. Jelks ran the 3-cone drill in 7.22 seconds, 10th among edge players and 14th among 48 players when including defensive linemen, and the 20-yard shuttle in 4.59 seconds, last among 15 edge players.

FRISCO (105.3 THE FAN) – With the 241st pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys select Jalen Jelks defensive end from Oregon.

This was the Cowboys last pick in the 2019 NFL draft

Keep it on 105.3 The Fan all week for our breakdown on the NFL Draft. Get a complete Cowboys draft recap right HERE.

The redshirt senior Jelks played outside linebacker in 2018 compared to defensive end from 2015-17. As an outside linebacker, Jelks produced 3.5 sacks after having a 7.0-sack season in 2017 while as a down lineman. Playing more in space, Jelks had a pass deflection and a forced fumble.

Jelks is 6-6, 252 pounds, right in the physical range of what the Cowboys like from their defensive ends. Jelks earned All-Pac 12 first team in 2018 and was second-team all-conference the year prior.

The Phoenix Desert Vista product was a sociology major at Oregon, which means he could have the intangibles to understand the whole Jason Garrett message and buy into what assistant head coach and defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli are selling.

Mike Weber Jersey

Last season, the emergence of then-freshman running back J.K. Dobbins took all the headlines of the Ohio State running game.

Dobbins, coming into the starting lineup as a true freshman because of a hamstring injury to then-redshirt sophomore and starting running back Mike Weber, came out of the gates in 2017 firing. In the opening game against Indiana, Dobbins rushed for 181 yards on 29 carries, breaking the school record for most yards by a freshman in their debut.

On the season, Dobbins broke the program record for rushing yards by a freshman, ending the year with 1,403 yards on the ground and second team All-Big Ten honors.

Weber ended his 2017 campaign with 640 rushing yards in 12 games played, often taking a back seat while Dobbins emerged as the consistent starter.

However, in the 2018 season opener against Oregon State, it was Weber who reminded everyone of his ability.

Weber ended the 77-31 victory against the Beavers with 20 carries for 186 yards and three rushing touchdowns, both career highs, as well as a reception touchdown, the first of his career.

“It feels good, because I know my expectations of myself so I know what I can do,” Weber said. “I just have to go out there and just do it for the team and actually show people what I can do, and it’s starting to show a little.”

Weber had five more carries than Dobbins, who ended the day with 74 yards on 15 rushes.

Splitting carries may sound like an issue to some, but for Weber, it’s much more of a positive than a negative.

“There’s a reason why I came back, because we knew that we was going to split carries, but splitting carries is actually good on the body for both of us,” Weber said. “We’re both gonna eat for the rest of the season, and I can’t wait for it to happen.”

Against Oregon State, Weber had three rushes of 20 yards or more, including a 49-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.

Though Dobbins has been seen as the running back with more speed to Weber’s power, it was the latter who broke to open space on a handful of occasions in Ohio State’s opener.

Acting head coach Ryan Day had plenty of praise for Weber’s performance, not just on Saturday, but in his offseason work.

“Really proud of the way Mike has practiced. We’ve been talking about that for a while now,” Day said. “That was really good to see him play well today.”

Weber and Dobbins sat out the majority of the fourth quarter, allowing time for freshman running backs Brian Snead and Master Teague to show their talents.

Both running backs from the 2018 recruiting class made their way to the end zone: Snead on a two-yard run and Teague on a 33-yard run.

Snead and Teague earned most of their reps when the game was out of hand, thanks in major part to Weber, who broke a career high while being a part of four of Ohio State’s 11 touchdowns on the day.

For Weber, a season removed from never being fully healthy, a season removed from being forced to live in the shadow of Dobbins’ success, he has made an immediate impact to Ohio State’s offense.

“Something just told me to come back with my brothers and get another year at it and, hopefully, stay healthy and do what I can to help the team win,” Weber said. “I’ve been counted out a lot, in the offseason, during the season last year, I just stay humble, just keep doing what I got to do to prove people wrong.”

Mike Weber is an outstanding running back who ran for over 1,000 yards as a freshman, added another 600-plus yards during a sophomore season that was slow to start because of injury, and is now healthy and ready to be a big-time producer for the Buckeyes … he and sophomore J.K. Dobbins give the Buckeyes one of the best one-two punches at running back in the Big Ten and possibly nationally … Weber, a fourth-year junior, is a veteran of 25 games with 13 starts … he enters the 2018 campaign with 1,722 career rushing yards and a career average of 6.1 yards per carry … he also has 33 career receptions for an additional 185 yards, six 100-yard rushing games and 19 rushing touchdowns … he rushed for 626 yards in 2017 and scored 10 touchdowns, all while coming off the bench … he displayed breakaway speed, as well: he went 82-yards for a score against Michigan State and he has four rushes of over 40 yards … had a career-best 53-yard reception vs. Maryland … he rushed for a career-high 162 yards against Michigan State’s No. 3 rated rush defense … Weber had a terrific freshman campaign in 2016, being named a freshman All-American after rushing for 1,096 yards in his rookie season and catching 23 passes out of the backfield, for 91 yards … he was named the Big Ten’s freshman of the year … he was just the third Ohio State freshman, joining Robert Smith (1,126 yards in 1990) and Maurice Clarett (1,237 yards in 2002), to rush for over 1,000 yards in a season … Weber is majoring in sociology.

Honors and Awards
2016: Big Ten Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year; Freshman All-American (ESPN and Football Writers Association of America), Second-team All-Big Ten Conference (coaches and media)
Weber came to Ohio State a consensus 4-star prospect who rushed for 2,268 yards and 29 touchdowns as a senior in 2014 despite missing three games for coach Thomas Wilcher’s state semifinalist squad … he averaged 10.1 yards per carry and Wilcher called him the best back in the Detroit Public School League in the last 30 years … was considered a Top 100 player nationally, with high overall rankings of No. 69 by Scout, No. 71 by Rivals, No. 80 by 247Sports and with a 140 rank on the ESPN 300 … considered the No. 1 player in the state of Michigan (Scout) and considered a Top 10 running back nationally by Rivals (No. 8), Scout (No. 9) and 247Sports (No. 9) … a first-team Associated Press all-state honoree as a senior and was twice named the Proud Strong Learner of the Week in the DPSL … rushed for a state record 404 yards and five touchdowns in a regional championship win over Clinton Township Chippewa Valley … rushed for 890 yards and 13 touchdowns in Cass Tech’s four-game run through the state playoffs in 2014 … a finalist for the Michigan state player of the year award and a co-recipient of the Detroit player of the year award … a U.S. Army All-American … parents are Toni and Mike Weber Sr.

Donovan Wilson Jersey

FRISCO (105.3 THE FAN) – With the 213th pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys select Donovan Wilson safety from Texas A&M.

The Cowboys still have two picks in the 2019 NFL draft: 218 in the seventh and 241 in the seventh.

Keep it on 105.3 The Fan for wall-to-wall draft coverage live from The Star in Frisco, and check out the 105.3 The Fan Draft Board to see the best prospects left in the 2019 NFL Draft right HERE.

Hear the Cowboys 4th round selection, Tony Pollard’s first radio interview on 105.3 The Fan right HERE.

Enter former Texas A&M Aggies safety Donovan Wilson. The 6-0, 199-pound Shreveport, La., product drew interest from the Cowboys at the Aggies’ pro day on March 26, so much so that Dallas sent safeties coach Greg Jackson and defensive assistant Ken Amato along with their scouts to check out Wilson.

The Shreveport Woodlawn alumnus is not a name that is up there with the likes of Delaware’s Nasir Adderley or Mississippi State’s Johnathan Abram. Projected to go near the bottom of the draft, Wilson has been impacted by a sports hernia for which he had surgery and missed the 2018 Gator Bowl.

However, Wilson did not let the injury hold him back at Aggies pro day, recording a 39-inch vertical.

A source close to the Cowboys tells WFAA.com that while Wilson’s pro day was “amazing,” the concern they have is he won’t be ready for NFL training camp if he doesn’t get rest for his hernia surgery.

According to the source, the club knows what Wilson can do on tape; he doesn’t need to prove anything else at the risk of aggravating his sports hernia injury and missing time in a NFL camp. If Wilson rests and heals up, the source says, the former Aggie safety will be fine.

What the Cowboys like about Wilson is his ability to play down in the box. In 2018, a year of eligibility granted to Wilson due to a medical redshirt from 2017, he recorded 67 combined tackles, 5.5 of them for loss, collected 2.0 sacks, intercepted two passes, and deflected two more.

Dallas likes the way Wilson plays in the box, in the intermediate areas, and in zone coverage. The theory behind the way the Cowboys view back end talent is that if they can identify two or three positive traits, they believe they can coach the rest.

“We think he has all the intangibles,” the source told WFAA.com. “We’ll see what happens.”

There has been no confirmation as to whether the Cowboys have brought in Wilson for a workout or as one of their 30 visits. Given the fact the Cowboys would like to see him fully recuperate from his sports hernia surgery, it is safe to presume they wouldn’t want to bring him in for a workout.

Dallas would be in a pickle when it came to taking Wilson. With a fifth-round pick and a seventh-round selection available to them on day three, Dallas would be at risk of taking Wilson too early or missing out on him entirely.

Nonetheless, the moves the Cowboys have made in free agency to shore up the back end allow them to take these kind of risks, both in waiting out for Wilson, and also waiting for Wilson to get healthy enough for training camp.

Do you think the Cowboys are in a good position to select the best player available when they pick in the draft or should they focus on needs?

NASHVILLE, Tenn – Former Woodlawn and Texas A&M safety Donovan Wilson was drafted in the sixth round by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2019 NFL Draft.

The Shreveport native was selected with the 40th pick in that round and 213 overall.

NASHVILLE, Tenn – Former Woodlawn and Texas A&M safety Donovan Wilson was drafted in the sixth round by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2019 NFL Draft.

The Shreveport native was selected with the 40th pick in that round and 213 overall.

Wednesday we found out linebacker Otaro Alaka is doubtful to play in the bowl game, today news comes out that a key member of the secondary will have to watch from the sidelines.

Today Jimbo Fisher told the media in Jacksonville that safety Donovan Wilson is out for the Gator Bowl after having hernia surgery.

Wilson has had tough luck with injuries in his time with the Aggies, missing all but a half of the 2017 season with an ankle injury and missing five games in 2016.

Wilson is the Aggies second leading tackler this season and was given the Aggie Heart Award and the Defensive Leadership Award at the teams annual postseason banquet.

At a certain point, you wondered if the Dallas Cowboys would ever address the safety position in the 2019 NFL Draft.

They came exceedingly close to doing so with the 58th-overall pick, having a lengthy conversation while on the clock about who to select between former Virginia safety Juan Thornhill and University of Central Florida defensive lineman Trysten Hill, but the latter won out in a photo finish. The team understands that unleashing an onslaught of pass rushers can make the secondary better by default, seeing as cornerbacks and safeties would then cover for shorter periods of time and capitalize upon mistakes made by opposing quarterbacks who are under constant duress. And so it went, with the Cowboys’ first five picks passing on the safety position — until they got to the sixth round and saw former Texas A&M standout Donovan Wilson still on the board.

They pulled the trigger quickly, and the subsequent draft call is one of the best you’ll hear.

Joe Jackson Jersey

The Cowboys completed their fifth-round double dip by drafting Joe Jackson with the 165th overall selection. Another defender, another Miami Hurricane, another Jackson.

Joe Jackson is not related to Michael Jackson, the CB from the same school selected by Dallas just seven spots earlier.
Joe Jackson is listed at 6-foot-4-inches and 275 pounds. In his report for NFL.com, analyst Lance Zierlein likens Jackson to a “bull in a china shop” who created “consistent production” while at Miami. He recorded 22.5 sacks and 35.5 tackles for loss in just three years as a Hurricane and will add young depth to a loaded defensive line within Rod Marinelli’s unit.

Over the course of the last three seasons, the Hurricanes’ defensive line has been one of Miami’s most consistent, productive units.

And now, for the third straight year, that unit has produced an NFL draft pick.

Defensive end Joe Jackson, who led the Hurricanes with nine sacks last season, was drafted Saturday in the fifth round by the Dallas Cowboys with the 165th pick.

He follows in the steps of former Hurricanes defensive linemen Al-Quadin Muhammad, who was a sixth-round draft pick of the New Orleans Saints in 2017 and teammates Chad Thomas, Kendrick Norton and RJ McIntosh, all of whom were drafted last year.

And in Dallas, Jackson will join another former Miami teammate — cornerback Michael Jackson, who was drafted by the Cowboys just minutes earlier with the 158th pick.

A former standout at Miami’s Gulliver Prep, Jackson wasted little time making an impact when he arrived in Coral Gables three years ago.

He earned freshman All-American honors by ESPN after leading the Hurricanes in both tackles for loss (11.5) and sacks (8.5) in 2016. He built on that success to become one of the Hurricanes’ most reliable pass rushers in recent years, collecting 47 tackles, including 14.5 tackles for loss last season. He also had an interception, broke up three passes and notched a team-high nine QB hurries.

He opted to bypass his senior year at Miami to enter the draft and his decision paid off, with Jackson quickly earning attention from several teams, including the Saints, Raiders, Cardinals and Titans, all of whom reportedly met with the defensive end in the weeks leading up to this weekend’s draft.

Now, Jackson hopes to add to Miami’s tradition in the NFL.

“This is an opportunity that you will never really get in another lifetime,” Jackson told reporters at the NFL combine earlier this year. “It’s just something we appreciate … We’re just trying to continue that legacy at ‘The U,’ having guys who come into the NFL and produce right away or guys that help teams become powerhouses, that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Jackson’s selection continues a run on defensive linemen that began during Thursday’s first round when 12 linemen were drafted including former St. Thomas Aquinas standout Nick Bosa, who went No. 2 to the San Francisco 49ers.

Also drafted in the first round were tackle Quinnen Williams (No. 3 by the Jets), end Clelin Ferrell (No. 4 by the Raiders), tackle Ed Oliver (No. 9 by the Bills), end Rashan Gary (No. 12 by the Packers), tackle Christian Wilkins (No. 13 by the Dolphins), edge Brian Burns (No. 16 by the Panthers), tackle Dexter Lawrence (No. 17 by the Giants), tackle Jeffery Simmons (No. 19 by the Titans), edge Montez Sweat (No. 26 by the Redskins), tackle Jerry Tillery (No. 28 by the Chargers) and end L.J. Collier (No. 29 by the Seahawks).

The Dallas Cowboys have selected former Miami defensive end Joe Jackson with the 165th-overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Yes, you read this correctly. Only a few picks after selecting cornerback Michael Jackson — also from Miami — with the 158th-overall pick, the two teammates will reunite in North Texas and undoubtedly be welcomed by all manner of Jackson 5 quips. The obvious being now stated, the Cowboys are thrilled with both picks, as Joe Jackson finds himself dropped into an all-out war on the defensive line.

The Cowboys feel they can’t possibly have enough bodies on their defensive front as they enter a summer with a ton of competition already in place, and it shows.

Now (finally) enjoying a truly dominant pass rush for the first time since the likes of future Hall of Fame linebacker DeMarcus Ware graced the halls, the Cowboys aren’t looking to be complacent going forward. They’ve locked in veteran defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence on a five-year, $105 million deal with $65 million in guarantees and struck a deal that landed All-Pro pass rusher Robert Quinn for a 2020 sixth-round pick. Quinn will join the newly-acquired Kerry Hyder in playing opposite Lawrence while the verdict on Randy Gregory’s future hovers about, and throwing Jackson into the fire injects that much more kerosene into the already emblazoned level of talent across the defensive front.

The 6-foot-4, 275 lb. pass rusher from South Florida isn’t as weighty as the team’s 58th-overall pick in Trysten Hill, but he doesn’t have to be when you consider they’ll have different tasks. While Hill bullies the interior, the expectation is Jackson will supplant the edge as needed while giving the Cowboys an ability to flex him right of center (3-tech) as needed.

From the moment he first stepped onto a football field wearing a Hurricanes’ uniform, Joe Jackson was projected to be the next star pass rusher from The U to go the NFL. After three seasons in which he led the Hurricanes in sacks, Jackson sets his sights on dominating the NFL.

Noted for his pass rushing instinct and ability, the Gulliver Prep graduate applied himself to become a good run defender to round out his game. A blend of speed and power at 6’5”, 265 pounds, Jackson was one of the most dynamic weapons on a talent-rich Hurricane defense.

So why are we bothering to watch film? Well, aside from poking holes in his game — there are always concerns that need to be addressed regarding any prospect — Jackson remains a blue chip bargain for all 32 teams this spring. We watched the highlights and game film from the 2018 season to get a better understanding of Jackson, the player. Here’s what we found out.

Strengths

Works the outside shoulder of the offensive tackle of UNC to get to the QB. A coverage, sack, Jackson keeps working through the block to pick up the sack and force the fumble.
Does a decent job of working his hands against FSU OT to pick up a sack late in the 4th qtr
Wins with a shoulder dip, rip, and speed rush.
Good closing speed on Duke QB Daniel Jones when he rolled out. Able to make shoestring tackle.
Set the edge well late against GT to keep the Canes in the game.
Demonstrates explosion against the Hokies OT that was caught flat-footed on his way to a sack.
Angle of pursuit helps him coral QBs in the backfield consistently.
Gets his hands up in the passing lane when he feels that he won’t make it before the pass is thrown.
Loves to rip and lean into the blocker as he rounds his way towards the QB.
Relentless motor. Even after he’s is walled off early in the play, he keeps moving his legs and makes sure to keep vision on the ball-handler. Illustrating that he is truly never out of a play.
Fights hard through double-teams, careen forward to maintain gap integrity.
Works his hands at point of attack to shed blockers.

Weaknesses

Lets offensive tackles get too much into his chest, stunting his rush.
Has explosion off the snap, but appears to get flustered if he does not find success off of first move.
Plays with a high pad level that could lead to him getting out leveraged by athletic tackles.
Posses few counters, but his repertoire will only expand at the next level.

Michael Jackson Jersey

The Dallas Cowboys have selected former former University of Miami cornerback Michael Jackson with the 158th-overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.

It took them a while to get to this point, having traded back not once — but twice — giving up their fourth-round comp pick the Cincinnati Bengals to move down and then move down yet again when they struck a deal with the Oakland Raiders.

Although the club was quite effective in using the 2017 draft to instant rebuild a corps devoured by free agency, they still felt like they had an opportunity to add to its prowess going forward. With the immediate emergence of Chidobe Awuzie and Jourdan Lewis, the team successfully moved Byron Jones from safety to full-time corner as they waved goodbye to veteran Orlando Scandrick. The third year from Anthony Brown was so impressive that he staved off the talented Lewis in the nickel, and while this gives the Cowboys four more-than-solid players at the position — competition is the name of the game.

Jackson is that and then some, ready to challenge for snaps once training camp gets underway in July.

He’ll battle it out with Jourdan Lewis and others beneath the top three spots, and while Jackson needs a bit more polish to be an impact player at the NFL level right out of the gate, there’s no denying his abilities. The 6-foot-1, 210 lb. corner already has the size advantage going into camp, one that passing game coordinator Kris Richard loved so much he fist-bumped others in the war room after the pick, and it’ll be interesting to see who he potentially forces off of the roster in 2019.

A few familiar names came off draft boards on Saturday afternoon during Day 3 of the NFL Draft, as Ohio State’s Michael Jordan and Miami’s Michael Jackson were taken in the fourth and fifth round, respectively.

The Cincinnati Bengals traded up to select Jordan, an offensive lineman who played as a guard and a center for the Buckeyes, with the 136th overall pick.

The 6-foot-6, 312-pound lineman started every game as a true freshman at Ohio State, so he brings three seasons of experience to Cincinnati.

In the fifth round, the Dallas Cowboys selected Miami cornerback Michael Jackson.

Jackson ran a 4.45-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, and has solid size at 6-foot-1, 200 pounds. Prepare for plenty of name jokes if you’re a Bengals or Cowboys fan.

Michael Jackson’s legacy will forever include this title: King of Pigskin.

His three-song medley at halftime of Dallas’s 52-17 trouncing of Buffalo in 1993 signified a tectonic shift for the N.F.L. For years, the league had packed its halftimes with a roster of the unhip: Up With People, Pete Fountain, Carol Channing, marching bands, the Rockettes, Elvis Presto and Disney characters.

Jackson produced a stunning first: raising NBC’s halftime rating higher than the Super Bowl action before it. The N.F.L. had grasped the need to enlist big-name, contemporary, broad-appeal artists to keep viewers from straying. So it used Jackson to continue expanding the notion of the Super Bowl as a mega-event that includes a game.

After Jackson came an A-list of stars, including Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, Christina Aguilera, Aerosmith, U2, Shania Twain, Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, Prince and Bruce Springsteen.

Performers in an ever-fragmenting musical market don’t need to be convinced of the importance of 12 minutes at halftime in front of 90 million to 100 million viewers in the United States and many more around the world.

Eleven years after Jackson sang, his sister Janet bared her breast (or had it stripped bare by Justin Timberlake), leading the Federal Communications Commission to fine CBS $550,000. Michael was no angel on stage at the Rose Bowl; he grabbed his crotch repeatedly, especially as he sang “Billie Jean.”

​The ​Cowboys needed some depth in the secondary, as the drop off in talent after Byron Jones and Chidobe Awuzie was cavernous. Dallas took a big steps toward rebuilding that defensive backfield by drafting Miami cornerback Michael Jackson with the 158th overall pick of the 2019 ​NFL Draft.

​​At 6-1 and 200 pounds, Jackson has terrific size for an outside corner. While his lack of production on the ball over the last season could be alarming, his size, speed, and tackling in the open field make him a low floor corner who can be trusted to match up with bigger receivers in both man or zone coverage.

Don’t be surprised if by the end of the season, Jackson has wrestled the No. 3 corner spot away from Jourdan Lewis. Given his physical profile and immense athletic ability, that’s entirely possible.

​​Within a span of 21 picks, we’ve seen a Michael Jordan and a Michael Jackson get drafted. You truly can’t predict football.

The second entry in our Kansas City Chiefs draft prospect series takes a look at some potential help at cornerback with a talented player out of Miami.

Welcome back! This week we’ll continue our Kansas City Chiefs draft prospect series, a breakdown of players the Chiefs may (or may not) be interested come draft time in April. Today we’re taking a look at a lengthy cornerback from Miami University, Michael Jackson Sr. This was actually one of the names suggested in the comments of my last prospect spotlight.

No, not that Michael Jackson. Our prospect today is listed at 6’2 and 195 pounds so Jackson has the size that the modern NFL covets. Jackson is more than just a big frame, however. He has been a productive player on the field for the Hurricanes since he arrived. Jackson contributed on special teams early, but enters his senior year as a regular starter after a breakout junior campaign that saw him earn Second Team All-ACC honors.

Jackson has no off the field issues and no major injuries of note. This is important, as the old saying goes “Your best ability is your availability.”

Tony Pollard Jersey

INDIANAPOLIS – The first thing Memphis RB Tony Pollard wanted to make clear: He’s never going to be Anthony Miller, personality-wise.

“We’re two different people when it comes to our confidence,” Pollard said with a smile on Thursday at the NFL scouting combine.

But Pollard and his former Memphis teammate and friend, Miller, now a budding star with the Bears, remain close — and Miller continues to rub off on Pollard now as he paves his own path to the league.

“I just like his style,” Pollard said of Miller, whose college apartment was just above Pollard’s during the 2017 season. “Just him believing in himself and him coming from nothing and where he is now. He believed in himself when nobody else did, and now that he’s up there he still hasn’t changed the way he’s at.”

As Pollard’s role with the Tigers grew, Miller was making his way as a rookie with the Bears. The second-round pick – for whom Bears GM Ryan Pace gave up this year’s second-rounder to draft in 2018 – had some stops and starts in his first season in Chicago, but he finished fifth on the team in receptions (33) and receiving yards (423) and led the club in TD catches (seven).

What struck Pollard at Memphis was what the Bears roundly praised Miller for: his work ethic.

“Even with him, his last season in Memphis, being projected as one of the best players in in the country, if you came around practice you would have thought he was a walk-on,” Pollard said. “He practiced and just was the hardest-working player I have ever been around.”

Of course, Miller amazingly was a walk-on there. And though Pollard was offered a scholarship out of high school out of the Memphis area by the Tigers, it was one of his few FBS options. He tried to soak up some of Miller’s prove-it mentality while climbing the depth chart there and earning a role on offense and special teams.

Versatility and speed might be two of Pollard’s best calling cards. He was a running back in a traditional sense, and he measured in at 5-foot-10 5/8 and 210 pounds. But the Tigers also used him as a receiver out of the backfield and split him out wide as a way to get him and teammate Darrell Henderson on the field together. Pollard ran for 552 yards and six touchdowns this past season and also caught 39 passes for 458 yards and three TDs. He said his best-ever 40-yard dash was 4.37 seconds.

Pollard also was Memphis’ best returner by a mile, running back six career kickoffs for touchdowns, and he showcased good skills while performing on a number of the special-teams units.

“My whole career at Memphis, I’ve been doing special teams,” he said. “Kick return, kickoff, punt, gunner, punt return, block kicks, blocking the gunners on punts. Running back who lines up in the slot. All just helps being able to do a lot of things.”

Including a few things the Bears currently need. He has spoken to the team informally he said, and Henderson told media he did the same with the Bears as they seek to add more talent into the backfield and upgrade the return game. Pollard knows he could help fill both roles.

Asked how he’d fit in an offense such as the Bears’, with running backs motioning out and lined up in multiple spots, Pollard said: “That’s what I am looking for. It’s really cheating honestly. Running with a linebacker, knowing you have the advantage speed-wise and skill set-wise. It’s fun, but it’s really cheating honestly.”

Henderson is likely the most beloved prospect, having averaged a stunning 8.2 yards on his 432 college carries and 12.0 yards on his 63 receptions over the past three years. But if he is off the board when the Bears make their first selection at No. 87 overall, Pollard could be on their radar later in the draft. He’s projected as a Day 3 pick, but the arrow has been pointing upward following a standout performance in Memphis’ bowl game and Pollard’s good showing at the Senior Bowl.

He warns that he’s not the same personality as Miller, but Pollard wants to bring that same drive to whatever NFL team that drafts him. And if he’s somehow reunited with his former Memphis teammate in Chicago?

“It would be almost a dream come true,” Pollard said. “Him being from Memphis, playing again together … I know we would just click again instantly.”

In his four years in Memphis Pollard rushed for 941 yards with 9 touchdowns, he also had 1292 yards recieveing with another 9 touchdowns.

The Cowboys still have three picks in the 2019 NFL draft: 136 in the fourth round, 165 in the fifth round, and 241 in the seventh.

Keep it on 105.3 The Fan for wall-to-wall draft coverage live from The Star in Frisco, and check out the 105.3 The Fan Draft Board to see the best prospects left in the 2019 NFL Draft right HERE.

ANALYSIS
During his three seasons at Memphis, Pollard established himself as one of the nation’s most electric return men, bringing back seven kickoffs for touchdowns to tie the FBS career record. While Pollard projects to make his biggest impact on special teams at the next level, his departure will represent a significant loss on offense for a Memphis squad that already lost top running back Darrell Henderson to the draft. Pollard finished as the Tigers’ third-leading rusher with 552 yards and second-leading receiver with 39 grabs for 458 yards in 2018.

FRISCO, Texas — The Dallas Cowboys have drafted running back Tony Pollard of Memphis as a potential backup for two-time NFL rushing champion Ezekiel Elliott.

The Cowboys took Pollard with the 128th overall pick in the fourth round Saturday. Dallas considered the spot behind Elliott an offseason priority after not bringing back seldom-used Rod Smith.

Pollard also has potential as a return man after tying the FBS career record with seven kickoff returns for touchdowns.

Although owner and general manager Jerry Jones has said a multipurpose back wasn’t a requirement for Elliott’s backup, Pollard fits that bill as well. He had 552 yards rushing with six touchdowns and 458 yards receiving with three more scores as a junior at Memphis.

All three of Dallas’ picks skipped their senior seasons to enter the draft. Central Florida defensive tackle Trysten Hill was the club’s top pick at 58th overall in the second round. Offensive lineman Connor McGovern of Penn State went 90th overall in the third round.

Connor McGovern Jersey

Below are snippets of scouting reports on new Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman Connor McGovern. Read the full reports by clicking the links.

Lance Zierlein, NFL.com: Reliable run blocker with NFL-ready size and strength but exploitable holes in his pass sets that need to be addressed as quickly as possible. His starting experience at both center and guard could bring additional interest in McGovern, who would be a bigger, stronger option at center for teams facing odd-front power in their division. He is a good fit in gap and inside-zone run schemes, but his tendency to over-set in pass protection could be challenging to correct. He’s an early starter as a Day 2 pick, but Year 1 could have ups and downs.

Yahoo Sports’ Eric Edholm: McGovern is a heavy-handed, well-proportioned blocker who works well on the move. … McGovern can hit moving targets, positions himself well with good footwork and has a nice finishing ability.

There are holes in his pass protection, as he will sometimes fail to get his hands inside of defenders and can struggle to pick up line stunts and twists … McGovern has the earmarks of an early NFL starter at any of the three interior positions – a high-floor, medium ceiling prospect who will make his unit better in time. He might not dominate early, but McGovern should be a good player for years to come.

Dane Brugler, The Athletic: A three-year starter at Penn State, McGovern started at guard as a true freshman before moving to center as a sophomore and spending time at both positions in 2018. The Nittany Lions had a 1,200-plus yard rusher each of the last three seasons and found success running it up the gut. McGovern loads his hands and runs his feet in the run game, locating his targets from distance with excellent awareness. He works persistently to stay between ball and defender in pass protection, but he needs to fortify his base and use his natural bend to shuffle and counter. Overall, McGovern needs to better trust his feet, but he shows starter quality traits at center or guard, projecting as a high-floor, low-ceiling NFL blocker.

Note: You need an Athletic subscription to read the above report.

The Draft Network: Connor McGovern definitely profiles as an eventual starting OG in the NFL, I’m just not sold he can do so at a high level immediately. With great functional athleticism and effective functional strength,, McGovern possesses the foundation needed to be a quality player. But hand timing issues and balance work still rear their heads in his tape and make him more of a three year window to peak as a pro vs. being a plug and play starter immediately from Day 1.

Cover1.net: McGovern has the type of versatility and experience that teams love. His experience at guard and center are exactly the combination that teams covet, seeing as how they only like to dress six or seven linemen on gameday (one tackle, one G/C). While he weighed in at 308 pounds at the combine, he played in the 320-pound range, and I believe that is where his weight should be. His frame can easily carry more muscle. He is a good athlete who plays best in the phone booth but moves well in space. That’s because he has reactive feet that quickly get him on the perimeter on pulls or mirroring a defender’s rush. McGovern’s lateral agility is sneaky; he can extinguish a 3-technique’s rush across his face or execute a double under-hop to anchor versus a nose tackle.

Most of McGovern’s question marks are correctable.

After selecting a defensive lineman with their first pick Friday night, the Dallas Cowboys switched to offense in the NFL draft’s third round.

With the 90th overall pick, the Cowboys selected Penn State offensive lineman Connor McGovern.

Here’s some local and national reaction to the pick:

Connor McGovern has become the 2nd Nittany Lion selected Friday, being selected with the 90th pick in the by the Dallas Cowboys.

McGovern is one of two Penn State offensive lineman who decided to forgo their senior season and enter the NFL Draft.

The Pennsylvania native appeared in 39 games as a member of the Nittany Lions, starting in 35 of them. In this past season as a junior, McGovern was named to the third-team All-Big Ten team by the league’s coaches and media.

The lineman is very versatile playing center and guard throughout his entire Penn State career.

NFL scouts have been raving about his size at 6-foot-5 and 308 pounds and his run blocking abilities.

McGovern is a solid, gritty offensive lineman that is predictable and going to give a solid performance on a week to week basis. He isn’t going to blow people away with his freakish ability, but McGovern is going to get the job done on the interior of the line.

Scouts are concerned about his pass blocking abilities, but overall McGovern is projected as one of the top guard prospects in the draft.

—Three-year starter who had experience at guard and center for the Nittany Lions.

—Tall (6’5″), long (34 ⅛” arms) and uses both well enough to keep defenders from getting inside his reach and dominating his frame in the run game. Doesn’t surrender his chest in pass pro.

—Road grader in the run game who locks on and has the lower-body power to drive block.

—Smart, well-coached blocker who already understands angles and timing when working to chip or double team.

—Can sink his weight and stonewall bull-rushers.

—Ideal size and power for an interior offensive lineman.

Trysten Hill Jersey

Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Trysten Hill agreed to an informal “work ethic contract” with Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli before the franchise selected him out of UCF in the second round of the 2019 NFL draft Friday night.

Marinelli told reporters it’s a pact with all the team’s defensive linemen and is not at all related to outsider concerns about his “football character and maturity.”

“I do this with every guy from a free agent to a draft pick, just my own copy of it, back and forth, front and back. It talks about how we play, what I ask of you in practice, day of games, all of it. I am very clear of it. I said to him, ‘If it doesn’t fit you, tell me now, because you will not be happy here. I told him to keep it, and he said, ‘Coach I feel great about this.’

“It’s just about how you play. It’s a lot of different things, but how you carry yourself, how you play in our system. The effort and the want to, every snap. We’re unique that way—how hard we practice and play. I usually see that on film early with guys. He really plays hard. If you watch his tape, he really hustles. That’s the passion we want in these guys.”

Yahoo Sports’ Eric Edholm clarified that it was a “handshake deal.”

Hill tallied 36 total tackles, including 10.5 tackles for loss, and three sacks across 12 appearances for the Knights during his junior season in 2018.

But he started only one game, raising questions about why one of UCF’s most talented defenders wasn’t on the field consistently.

In December, Chris Hays of the Orlando Sentinel reported the Florida native “started to gain a reputation, deserving or not, for being lazy and having attitude issues” during his sophomore season in 2017. Then he lost his starting spot when Josh Heupel took over the program from Scott Frost before the 2018 season.

“And then having things happen … and having the coaching change happen and how some people started to spell it out in different ways about me in different situations and stuff like that,” Hill said. “But I don’t feel like I got a bad rap. I just feel like some people didn’t really support me the way they should have.”

He mentioned Frost and his staff while declaring for the draft in early January, but he didn’t mention Heupel or his staff, furthering the belief a schism had developed.

Looking ahead, Hill should provide depth for the Cowboys behind Maliek Collins and Tyrone Crawford at defensive tackle as a rookie.

He possesses the potential to eventually become a three-down starter for Dallas up front. That could happen as early as 2020 with Collins being a potential unrestricted free agent after next season.

FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Trysten Hill didn’t have a happy ending at Central Florida, where the defensive tackle appeared to fall out of favor with the coaching staff after Scott Frost left for Nebraska.

The Dallas Cowboys showed little concern for that history while drafting an interior defensive lineman before the third round for the first time in almost 30 years. After the two biggest moves of the offseason involved their pass rush, the Cowboys kept the focus on the defensive front with their first pick of the draft, taking Hill 58th overall in the second round Friday night.

Dallas, which didn’t have a first-round pick because of a trade last season for receiver Amari Cooper, took Penn State offensive lineman Connor McGovern with the 90th overall pick in the third round. Hill and McGovern skipped their senior seasons to enter the draft.

The 308-pound Hill wasn’t happy with his playing time when the Golden Knights lost to LSU in the Fiesta Bowl, ending a 25-game winning streak. He started just once in 12 games after starting all 13 games in both seasons under Frost.

But Hill and Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli hit it off during the process leading to the draft, including a meeting that Hill remembered the night before his NFL combine workout in February.

“He wants the best out of me and I want to give him everything I got,” Hill said. “Him taking hold of me in this whole process and me being able to call him and chat with him and just hear his voice was huge in this whole ordeal.”

Coach Jason Garrett said the Cowboys spent time with Frost and the staff that was with Hill his first two years. Garrett said they “endorsed him highly, both as a player and as a person.”

That was enough for Dallas to take a defensive tackle before the third round for the first time since drafting Russell Maryland first overall in 1991.

“We got very comfortable with that question because we had the same question everybody else had,” Garrett said. “He played well in ’17 and then is not a starter in ’18. What’s going on there? He’s still a young guy. He’s still maturing. The stuff that we think is most important. He loves ‘ball. He wants to work at it. He wants to be great. He wants to be part of something special. We feel like he has all those qualities.”

Despite a strained relationship with the coaching staff, Hill was productive in his final season with UCF, recording career highs with 36 tackles, three sacks and 10 1/2 tackles for loss. He had six tackles, three for loss and two sacks in a 56-41 win over Memphis in the American Athletic Conference championship game.

“I think I’m a dominant, tenacious player, and everything’s a competition,” Hill said. “That’s how I was raised. That’s what I’m going to do day in and day out. I’m excited to get to work because I know that’s how Marinelli preaches.”

Marinelli says he plans to use Hill in the same position as Maliek Collins, a three-year starter going into the final year of his rookie contract.

Defensive line was the top choice in the draft for the Cowboys after they made star pass rusher DeMarcus Lawrence the highest-paid player in franchise history with a $105 million, five-year contract and acquired defensive end Robert Quinn from Miami in a trade.

McGovern brings the versatility the Cowboys covet with offensive linemen. He played guard as a freshman with the Nittany Lions, center as a sophomore and mostly guard his final season in 2018.

“To me he was a classic case of us doing our best to look up at the board and say, ‘Who’s the best player up there?'” Garrett said. “He for us was by far the best player at that time. Exactly what we want in our offensive linemen. He’s smart, he’s tough, he loves to play the game.”

The Cowboys go into Saturday with four picks in the final four rounds: two in the fourth and one each in the fifth and seventh rounds.