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The Most Important Cowboy Football Players For 2017: No. 11

Time to head to the defensive side of the ball.

Valero Alamo Bowl - Oklahoma State v Colorado Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images

We are nearly a third of the way through our countdown, and he have only focused on offense and special teams. Time to change that.

For our 11th most important player for the 2017 season, we look at the defensive end position.


#11 Jarrell Owens

Owens is a 6-3, 270 pound redshirt junior from Palestine, TX. Last season, he had 25 tackles, including 5.5 for loss. He had 2.5 sacks, three QB hits and 29 INT return yards.

In case you forgot where the 29 INT return yards came from...

As defensive end, Owens is responsible for containment. As we saw last season, the Big 12 has some elusive QBs. That’s why it is important for DEs to stay disciplined and stay home in case of QB scrambles or the offense runs a reverse or some other trick play. Without a good DE to help contain, it doesn’t matter how well the DBs cover, a team will have a tough time stopping any team, since they can just run all day.

Owens and opposite DE Cole Walterscheid both had eerily similar seasons.

okstate.com

I chose Owens for one simple reason - experience. Owens was a regular in the rotation in 2015 - his first season of playing. Walterscheid was injured for most of the 2015 season, and only logged minutes in the first and last game of that season.

If the Cowboys hope to wreak havoc in the pocket this season, they are going to need to rely on Owens and Walterscheid to keep the QB in there.

We will be releasing the rest of our countdown each day leading up to the Spring Game April 15th. Check back every day to see who makes the list!

Top 15 Countdown:

15. Matt Ammendola
14. Backup Quarterback
13. Tyron Johnson
12. Marcus Keyes