Dallas Cowboys Select Deuce Vaughn, Son of Assistant Director of College Scouting

Dallas Cowboys Select Deuce Vaughn, Son of Assistant Director of College Scouting

The Dallas Cowboys selected Deuce Vaughn, a running back out of Kansas State, at No. 212 overall on Saturday. The team’s assistant director of college scouting, Chris Vaughn, who has been with the Cowboys since 2017, was given the privilege of calling his son with the news. Chris was in the draft room when Jerry Jones, the team’s owner and general manager, asked him to turn in the team’s card for its sixth-round pick. He initially did not understand what was happening since the picks are now automated. However, when his colleagues stood up and Jones symbolically tossed him a napkin as if it were the card, Vaughn realized the team was selecting his son.

“In 30 years of this league, I’ve never seen anything like that. That was a very special moment,” said head coach Mike McCarthy.

Deuce Vaughn’s Qualifications

Deuce Vaughn ran for 3,604 yards and 34 touchdowns and had 1,280 yards receiving in three years at Kansas State. In 2022, he led the FBS in all-purpose yards with 1,936, including 133 yards on 22 carries and a touchdown against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. Despite his size of 5-foot-5, 179 pounds, some teams were deterred. However, Stephen Jones, the team’s executive vice president, said that “you watch him run through Alabama’s defense, breaking ankles and doing things that he did, he’ll make a believer out of you in a hurry.”

The Cowboys have Tony Pollard, who was named to the Pro Bowl last year, playing on the franchise tag and coming off a fractured ankle he suffered in the playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers. They signed Ronald Jones as an unrestricted free agent and also have Malik Davis and Rico Dowdle. Jerry Jones said he would not rule out the potential return of Ezekiel Elliott, who was released by the team in March.

McCarthy said, “I think clearly, Deuce can play the normal flow of our offense, first and second down. I think stating the obvious as far as the protection component, we’ve got to work together there, but there’s some very distinct situational thoughts and concepts that I have in mind early. Randall Cobb-ish type things I’ve done in the past. Yeah, we’ll definitely have opportunities for him to take advantage of his productivity. I mean he’s a dynamic player.”

Chris Vaughn did not write a report on his son leading up to the draft, and when the Cowboys discussed Deuce in their meetings, he left to avoid influencing the direction in any way. Just before the Cowboys were on the clock, Vaughn was in the team’s undrafted free agent process and not in the draft room. In a side hallway, Deuce called him, and he could tell the emotions of not being selected were starting to affect him. Chris put aside the scout in him and became the father, pumping up his son.

“For me, it was one of the coolest things I’ve ever been involved in. Just to have a guy that we value so much as an employee and the work that he does, and then to have so much positive be said about his son and then to watch the tape and see just how impactful he will be on the field, then have that moment to share that, because it’s all about family. When you talk about the Cowboys, you talk about football, you talk everything else, but you talk about family,” said Will McClay, the team’s vice president of player personnel.

Deuce said he never asked his dad what the Cowboys thought about him. “I wanted it to happen organically. I wanted everything to fall into place as if it would. And over the past two weeks, the biggest thing we kind of echoed to each other is that I just needed a chance. It didn’t matter what round. It didn’t matter exactly what pick. I just needed a chance, a foot in the door. For it to be Dallas, oh man, it’s unbelievable.”


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