Landing the Canadian Sleeper: Dallas Takes Tyrone Crawford in the 3rd

Tyrone Crawford
The 3rd round has produced a lot of “huh” picks and the announcement of Boise State DE Tyrone Crawford as the Cowboys’ 3rd round pick has some scratching their heads.

We’re fortunate to have our back catalog of Wes Bunting chats to lean upon, and Wes predicted way back in February that Crawford could be a solid 3rd-round pick:

CN: Tell us more about Boise State’s DE Tyron Crawford. The more I read on him, the more I think he could be one of these sneaky guys who lasts until the 3rd and ends up being a bargain for a team.  

WB:   He’s a base defensive end.  He’s a 4-3 guy only. I think he plays on the strong side and he plays three downs. He’s a plus run defender. He’s 6’4”, 280. I think he weighed 284 at the East-West Shrine Game. And he’s a sneaky pass rusher. He’s a power player who has enough of a get off to where he can at least threaten the edge. He does a great job of putting his foot in the ground and converting that edge speed into power. He drops his pad level, gains leverage and he can overpower tackles. I think he’s a good football player. Not the sexiest, but someone who will go in the 3rd-4th round and can come in and develop into a starter.  

CN: Sounds like he’s really well coached. 

WB: He actually has a lot of developing to do. He’s a Canadian kid, I believe and there are some raw parts to his game. But he can bend. He can be physical, and he’s a tough kid. There’s enough upside to his game that has me even more intrigued.

Dallas sees him as a 5-technique, as someone who has the power to hold the point and to build upon those “sneaky” pass rush skills.  They passed on better known names like Brandon Thompson and Jared Crick to get him.

The pick gets solid grades from the draftniks, who see him challenging for a starting spot right away.  He reads like a guy who can challenge Marcus Spears and Kenyon Coleman.  He’s still new to football, and appears to have real upside.

Now, high high is his floor?  That will tell us a lot about his 2012.

Dallas has thus far been true to form.  Here’s the DE we heard they would take.  They passed on Michael Brockers in the 1st to get Morris Claiborne, but they’ve filled that DE need in the 3rd.  I look for an offensive line pick in the early 4th tomorrow.

Rafael Vela

Rafael Vela

Senior Analyst Cowboys at Sports Talk Line
Started covering Dallas Cowboys @ in '95 and '96. Two more stops along the way and here I am. Senior Analyst for
Rafael Vela

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  • Pacerman

    Great pick for the Boys.  His college production was very good and he’s as good even not even better than OLB Shea McCellin who the Bears picked in the 1st Rd. Compared to other TOP DEs/OLB, some BTB poster did an in-depth analysis of these same players and Tyrone Crawford was the highest rated player.  Yes, this same analysis projected him as a late 3rd Rd or early 4th Rd pick but mostly due to playing at Boise State and being an unknown.  Rob Ryan will plug him into this 4-3 Defensive fronts and nickel packages (which will happen quite a bit in the Eastern Conference’s trend of passing first) to rush the passer and/or disrupt plays in the opponent’s backfield.  I definitely like his size, quickness, and high motor.  Damn….what an outstanding DEFENSE the Boys will field next year….I’m stoked.


  • AustonianAggie

    Good deal. Those Boise State d-linemen looked great shredding Georgia last year

  • DannyWhite

    Knowing that Jerry was going to take another (!) ILB at #45 makes the Claiborne trade-up even better. I’d *much* rather have Claiborne than Brockers + ILB. Not even a close call. 

    • kameleon_o

      Which ILB??

      • Lee1936

        Bobby Wagner, taken by the Eagles.  We’ll see more of him than we ever wanted to, for the next few years.

        • kameleon_o


  • greatwhitenorth

    You’re welcome, America.  If he’s on the team half as long as L.P., he’ll have done Canada proud.

    • greatwhitenorth

      My actual reaction (if anyone cares) is less optimistic.  The initial reports I’ve read make this seem too much like mid-round project picks of yesteryear–Hatcher, J.Williams, B.Williams, AOA, Canty, Thornton, etc.  I like his athleticism, and taking a DE with pass rushing potential was a good move.  And the 3rd round is where I’m officially basing my judgments on very little more than hearsay.  But I don’t have confidence in this scouting department and front office to buy into their projects anymore.   I’m not going to pencil this guy in as an impact player anytime soon.

  • Tim

    Crawford’s got Justin Tuck size, length and skillset.  I see a rotational pass rusher early on out of the nickel and dime packages.  I think he could be a guy that gets moved around for matchups until/if he matures into a starter.

    I like it.  We needed somebody like him that can rush the passer and penetrate the backfield to create pressure.  Seems like a more athletic Tony Tolbert.

    I’d still like to see Brewster or the Baylor center, but not Ben Jones.  Molk intrigues but I just think after last year, they don’t want to mess with somebody that small.  I know he’s strong but how will he hold up against size.  I will bet that he wouldn’t let Brandon Spikes punk him like Costa did, though.

    I’d also like to see Ron Brooks for a 5th corner and special teams ace.

    I’d like to see Cam Johnson (could be Spencer’s replacement next year), more than Massaquoi.  Any other OLB prospects?  The TCU guy?

    I like the SMU TE/DE.

    Cyrus Gray or Jeff Fuller anyone?

    There are still tons of WR’s and WR/KR’s left. Adams, Childs, Criner…

    Both Texas LB’s they brought in are left (Robinson and Acho)

    Chapman from Bama and Ta’aamu from Washington are still there.  So is Malik Jackson from Tennessesse.  Do the Cowboys like Brent, Gaethers and Calloway enough to pass on more DL depth in this draft?

    Sidenote:  I scheduled my drive down to San Antonio tomorrow for early morning so I can sit at my Mother-in-Law’s house and watch the draft while they go to Fiesta/King William Fair all day.  Pretty proud of myself for that one.

    • greatwhitenorth

      Ronnell Lewis at OLB.  Poor man’s Upshaw, and would bring toughness to special teams at the very least.  I’m surprised he wasn’t the pick at 81.

    • dcogar

      Take it from a Michigan Cowboy fan, Molk will overcome his size deficiency. The guy is a football player. He would be an upgrade for the Cowboys right away.

  • cowboyny

    The Crawford selection is intriguing, he appears to be a rotational player who has some pass rush abilities, which is what the team sorely needs. Very raw, very inexperienced, but he is an ascending player who has his best football ahead of him.

    I was totally against trading up for Peterson last season, was happy with the deal up to get his teammate, but even more happy hearing that Booby Wagner would of been the pick at 45. Trade up every year, as the team always takes questionable 2nd rd picks.

    As for the third day, there are plenty of good prospects available:

    OLB-Lewis, Cam Johnson, Massaquoia
    S-IIoka, Allen
    CB-Boykins, Norman
    C-Jones, Blake

    I need another pick, I guess that is wishful thinking. I wish I knew where these prospects fall on the team’s draft board.

    • Tim

      After Brandon Taylor got taken i’m not sure i’m interested in any of the other S’s.

      They brought in DJ Campbell from Cal, but I think he’s either 7th or UDFA. 

  • Lee1936

    We need STARTERS, and GM Jerry gives us a developmental guy.

    • pphaiju48

      and where would you get that from? your pockets they are in the 3rd round. Moreover there are other 31 teams picking…you think you can do better than that?

      • Lee1936

        You don’t want a guy who will start sometime in his rookie year?  You’re OK with using our second pick to take a guy new to football, with ONE YEAR experience starting, who is optimistically projected as a part-time contributor as a rookie?  To me, this sounds like a long shot you take in the 5th round AT THE EARLIEST.  Hope I’m wrong, but haven’t we all seen this kind of inexplicable nonsense before?   Am I the only guy on this blog who notices he was taken WAY TOO SOON, leaving legitimate STARTING TALENT on the board?  

  • Lee1936

    NO.  Should have taken one of the OCs, almost any of whom would win Costa’s job, and probably by the final roster cut.

    • fivetwos

      Agreed. However those guys are still on the board, so let’s see.

    • kameleon_o

      Personally, I think Crawford could take Costa’s job.

      All of the other OC’s are still available. With our luck though they’ll be the 1st 3 picks of the 4th round.

      • AustonianAggie

         you may be right about who could take what job

      • Chavez

         lol wouldn’t you know it, a bunch of center’s went off the board at the beginning of the fourth? and i think dan bailey can take costa’s job.

  • kameleon_o

    I like the pick. I think his floor is Hatcher from 2011. I am less sure what his ceiling is. I think he contributes immediately. I’ll bet he makes either Spears or Coleman expendable during camp.

    It seems like Wes thinks he’s strictly a 4-3 guy but the Cowboys are 180 the other way. Wonder what the difference between their scouting reports are??

    • dcogar

      I think the Cowboys may be quietly going to a 4-3

  • sidarc

    Obviously, time will tell, but doesn’t it seem like the Bengals are killing this draft? They did it last year too. Interesting.

    • kameleon_o

      They got 3 guys who can start right off the bat. Maybe 4. I don’t know much about the guys already on their team. Very good draft.

  • Montecito Tex

    Tip of the well-worn Stetson and a Calvados…

  • chum

    Wes thinks he’s a 4-3 guy “only.”  Does that trouble you at all?

    • No.  He’s 285 now.  IF he’s a power player, he can do the job.  He’s a power end, which translated to the 3-4.  He was 275 during the year.

      • kameleon_o

        He’s fast, looks fairly strong, and Wes said he could bend. I like that from a DE in a 3-4. It’s definitely something we don’t have at the position now wouldn’t you think Raf??

        How would you compare him to Lissemore Raf??

      • Chandus

         285? At his Pro Day he weighed 275… In a month he added 10 pounds in a month? That has to be bad weight…

        Still, he’s an interesting prospect.

      • Bluefin

         He’s a long limbed player Jason Garrett expects to be in the high 290s in the future.

        The team raved about his motor, even comparing it to Jay Ratliff’s.

        Will be a 5 tech with position flexibility who can also line up at DT and DE in the four man Nickel line.

        BTW, Jerry Jones also mentioned Clifton Geathers as a DL player the coaches are high on moving forward.

    • dcogar

      I wish they would have taken Mike Martin

  • joey2zs

    Wow, what a draft so far.