Here’s who Mel Kiper thinks the Cowboys will target in first round of 2021 NFL draft

Patrick Surtain NFL Draft

It’s officially NFL draft season, which means it’s also Mel Kiper, Jr. season. The longtime ESPN draft analyst joined Sportscenter on Tuesday and gave a few quick thoughts about the top 10 of the 2021 NFL draft, including who the Dallas Cowboys could target with the 10th pick overall.

Daviyon Nixon, a defensive tackle from Iowa had a great year,” Kiper said. “Six of eight games, he had at least one sack, 13.5 tackles for loss. The interception against Penn State he returned 71 yards, showcased his athleticism. Patrick Surtain II, smooth, consistent, veteran cornerback very well-coached under Nick Saban there. Either Surtain or Nixon makes sense for the Cowboys at pick 10.”

Nixon is one of Kiper’s guys. He was the first draft analyst to rank Nixon in his top 32 and it’s becoming a popular narrative now that draft season is heating up. He appeared in eight games this season and finished the year with 13.5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks.

As for Surtain, he’d qualify as a steal for the Cowboys at No. 10. The Crimson Tide defender is the top cornerback in the 2021 class, which means he’s likely to hear his name called before the 10th pick.

While Kiper didn’t suggest that the Cowboys will be in the quarterback market, it remains to be seen whether Dallas will re-sign Dak Prescott to a long-term deal. If they decide not to, he can be used as a trade piece to move up in Round 1 in an effort to land either Justin Fields or Zach Wilson.

Bryan Perez

Bryan is the founder of Pro Football Draft. His work has been featured on The Draft Network, NBC Sports and USA Today. Former CFL scout.

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