Dallas Cowboys: Why to watch Ken Bishop

With the 251st overall pick in the 7th round of the 2014 draft, Dallas selected Ken Bishop, defensive tackle from Northern Illinois University. Other than Michael Sam, not many 7th round draft picks garner much attention, but Bishop can definitely fly under the radar for the Cowboys and make an impact on the team.

Bishop was a consensus All-MAC selection in 2013. He’s a great run stopper as he had 70 tackles and seven for a loss last season. He’s very stout and powerful enough to take on double teams. He has surprisingly quick hands to shed blockers and make big plays in the backfield.

Critics will point at Bishop coming from a small school and not being able to compete with the talent of the NFL. Those critics should know that before Bishop played for N.I.U. he played for a junior college in Iowa. He had lots of expectations to play well for Northern after junior college and he adjusted very well. There’s  no doubt that if Bishops plays with the same intensity he did at Northern he’ll be able to succeed in the NFL.

Bishop’s weakness is his height. He’s only six feet, but his stature might actually work in favor for him as he can use his height to get leverage under taller offensive lineman. Other smaller defensive tackles have found success in the NFL like Pro Bowler Geno Atkins. Atkins and Bishop are about the same size, so height shouldn’t be much of a concern. Another weakness of Bishop is that he’s not much of a celebrated pass rusher. He only had 3.5 sacks at his stay at Northern.

Being a pass rusher shouldn’t be a main focus for Bishop.  The Cowboys drafted DeMarcus Lawrence in the second round just for that. Check out the article I wrote on why DeMarcus Lawrence was the best pick. Bishop should continue to focus on what he does best, and that’s run stopping. Also, with the teaching of Rod Marinelli, one of the best defensive line coaches in the game, I expect Bishop to become a better pass rusher.

With the Cowboys needing as much help as possible on the d-line, Ken Bishop should step up and seize this opportunity to make this club, which is very much possible. Bishop is a very strong player as he benched 225 pounds 31 times at his workout. He’s not a afraid to take on mulitple blockers and make space for other defenders to attack the quarterback. I expect Bishop to make the team as a backup and eventually become a starter later on in the season.

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