Why the Slide?: Cooper Beebe, G, Kansas State

This series was created a number of years ago in response to questions about why certain well-known prospects went unselected in NFL drafts. For these articles, I reach out to sources with NFL teams to find out why their organizations passed on drafting a given player, and/or, what were the reasons for other teams to pass on that prospect. The positive response to “Why Undrafted” and questions from readers about why prospects were drafted lower than the media expectations led us to create the parallel series “Why the Slide?”

Both series are back this year. Feel free to email me requests for Why the Slide? and Why Undrafted? at [email protected]. I can’t promise to get to all of them, but I will do my best and definitely will respond to the email.

Throughout the leadup to the 2024 NFL Draft, there were common projections of Cooper Beebe going in the second round. Beebe had a solid career at Kansas State as a multi-year starter who logged time at tackle and guard. There were even some in the media who thought he might sneak into the first round, but the common projection was Beebe going in the top 64. Thus, it was a surprise to many when he slipped well into the third round.

According to team sources, Beebe slid in the draft because his tape from his final season was not as impressive as the 2022 tape. They said they felt Beebe had lost some intensity on tape and was limited athletically. Sources also noted Beebe had more problems with speed and quickness in his final season with Kansas State. Thus, Beebe’s performance on the field was why he went lower than expected.

The Dallas Cowboys ended Beebe’s slide in the third round, which was a very good landing spot. Dallas has done a nice job of developing mid-round offensive linemen into NFL starters. This offseason, the Cowboys lost long-term veteran left tackle Tyron Smith and starting center Tyler Biadasz in free agency. They drafted tackle Tyler Guyton in the first round to replace Smith, and that allows them to keep young stud Tyler Smith at left guard. However, if Guyton struggles, Smith could move to tackle, and Beebe could potentiallty be a starting left guard. Beebe also could be cross-trained at center to compete with the likes of Brock Hoffman and T.J. Bass.

The right guard position is manned by Pro Bowler Zack Martin, but Martin is 34 and only signed for two more seasons. Considering the Cowboys will have extremely expensive contracts to shell out for Dak Prescott, CeeDee Lamb and Micah Parsons, they could consider getting younger and cheaper by moving on from Martin in the next year or two. Thus, Beebe could also be considered as Dallas’ future starting right guard.

Beebe might be disappointed about sliding in the 2024 NFL Draft, but he landed a good opportunity to develop and become a future starter with the Cowboys.


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