LSU Arkanasas Football

LSU defensive back Jabril Cox returns an interception against Arkansas during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020, in Fayetteville, Ark. (AP Photo/Michael Woods)

After an impressive one-year stint at LSU, Jabril Cox is headed to Dallas, with the Cowboys selecting the rangy linebacker in the 4th round, No. 115 overall.

Cox, who began his college career at FCS powerhouse North Dakota State, became the third LSU player selected in the 2021 NFL draft. Cox was projected as a potential second-round selection, but slid to Day 3 with some reports indicating injury concerns.

Cox became the sixth defensive player picked by the Cowboys in the draft.

A pair of LSU wide receivers went off the board over the first two days of the draft, with Ja'Marr Chase reunited with Joe Burrow as the No. 5 pick by the Cincinnati Bengals, and Terrace Marshall reuniting with Joe Brady as the No. 59 overall pick by the Carolina Panthers. 

The 6-3, 232-pound linebacker was the team's third-leading tackler with 58 tackles, including 6.5 tackles for loss and a sack. Cox also had three interceptions, including one he returned for a touchdown in his debut against Mississippi State in the season opener.

"The only real difference in studying his tape from North Dakota State and LSU is that Cox looks substantially more explosive than everyone else on the field for the Bison," wrote NFL analyst Lance Zierlein, who compared Cox to Detroit Lions linebacker Tahir Whitehead. "He looks like he fits right in with the athletes at LSU, though."

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Despite playing just one season in Baton Rouge, Cox became a leader along a defense that struggled in a new scheme to start the season before steadily improving down the stretch. He was unable to work out at LSU's initial pro day due to a hamstring injury, but worked out at a secondary pro day on Monday. In that workout he registered a 40-yard dash of 4.54 second, a vertical leap of 34 inches and a broad jump of 10 feet, 3 inches.

[Cox is] extremely fast with verified playmaking traits and credentials. His cover talent could help him quickly get on the field," Zeirlein continued in his analysis. "He's below average in diagnosing and using his hands, which can put him in recovery mode at times. However, traits and talent should be enough to overcome those issues and help make him a solid, three-down starter within the first couple of seasons."


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