I want to welcome another “Featured Writer” to the Silver and Blue Report team … Welcome, Ben and “Blogging Big D”. Randy
A Look at Morris Claiborne‘s Rookie Season and Beyond
Mo Claiborne’s rookie season was a bit of a roller coaster ride, much like the Dallas Cowboys‘ season as a whole. At times he was picked on and was frustrating to watch, and at other times he looked like the player Jerry Jones and the ‘boys traded up for.
Some games he wasn’t talked about much, which can be good for a corner, especially a young one. Many compared Claiborne to former LSU teammate and Arizona Cardinal Patrick Peterson. Peterson is seen to have had a much better rookie year than Claiborne, though that is in large part due to him getting noticed in the return game, which Claiborne wasn’t part of in Dallas. However, there were some similarities between the two’s rookie seasons. Peterson had just 9 more tackles than Claiborne in his rookie season, and played one more game. Both caused 2 turnovers (Claiborne’s coming off forcing a fumble and one pick, Peterson had 2 picks). Peterson did defend 5 more passes than Claiborne, and blocked 2 kicks.
These similarities point to what could hopefully be a breakout year for Claiborne next season. The defense as a whole should be better after adding talent in the draft in the form of a nose guard and possibly a safety (maybe another LSU Tiger, Eric Reid??), and with several players having the offseason to regain their health. In his 2nd season, Peterson’s tackles went down, but he snagged 5 more picks and defended more passes. I wouldn’t be surprised to see similar improvements from Claiborne as he grasps the NFL game playing what is, in my opinion, the hardest position to play as a rookie besides quarterback.