Michigan defensive tackle Mazi Smith was taken by the Dallas Cowboys with the No. 26 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. It was originally thought that the team would use the selection on Notre Dame tight end Michael Mayer, but they’ve decided to plug the interior defensive line instead.
Michigan Wolverines defensive tackle Mazi Smith will get his NFL career going after a productive college football career that led to plenty of individual and team success. Smith brings plenty of traits that show he can play at a high level in the pros.
Smith finished with 88 tackles over the last three seasons including six for loss and 0.5 sacks. He also defended three passes with a forced fumble and fumble recovery.
Mazi Smith: Scouting Report
Smith is a massive human at 6-foot-3 and 323 pounds, which is a good size for an NFL defensive tackle looking to plug holes and take on multiple blockers. The combination of size and quickness is something franchises should love, and that could lead to Smith being more than just a big body build to stop opponents’ rushing attacks.
If you’re looking for cons, it’s just like many other defensive tackles at his size. He is unlikely to be relied upon during obvious passing-down situations with limitations as a pass rusher.
Mock Draft landing spots
Mazi’s in an interesting spot, as some outlets have projected him to late in the first round (like The Athletic, who has him going to the Saints with the 29th pick), while others have him in the second round, like CBS Sports who has him going to the Saints at 55 or ESPN, which has him going to the Cowboys at 58.