Top defensive NFC rookie prospects for 2012

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Morris Claiborne

One pick can change an entire defense. Every year when the draft comes around, teams dream of finding that guy who can take an average or below-average defense and instantly make it respectable. The Lions hit that jackpot a couple of years ago with Ndamukong Suh, but he was a rare prospect. Most teams in this year’s draft are going to be happy if the picks they’ve made can just make modest improvements to their unit’s performance.

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1. Morris Claiborne, Cowboys CB

It’s always nice to acquire a guaranteed starter with a draft pick, and that’s exactly what Dallas did when they moved up to draft Morris Claiborne. With Claiborne, the Cowboys have added a cornerback who’s already NFL-ready without any concerns about taking time to develop. He’s polished and doesn’t lack the stone hands that many rookie defensive backs have.

Making this acquisition even more lethal is the fact that Claiborne isn’t coming into a weak defense. The Cowboys gave up a lot of passing yards last season, but in terms of touchdowns allowed they were in the middle of the pack. With the addition of Claiborne, the Cowboys might have a top ten defense at the end of the season. Read more here…

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