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April 28, 2012

Fourth-round pick Wilber says Cowboys want him at LB opposite Ware, whose game he studied

Kyle Wilber, the first of the Cowboys’ two fourth-round picks, has experience at both defensive end and outside linebacker, but the Cowboys want him at outside linebacker.

“They really like me at outside linebacker on the opposite side of DeMarcus Ware,” he said.

Wilber played his first two seasons at Wake Forest at defensive end. He moved to outside linebacker when the school switched to a 3-4, and he said that let him show his athleticism.

“A lot of teams told me that I had bad hips, and I was able to prove to them my senior year and show them that I’m actually able to drop into zone coverages and re-route receivers and athletic enough to stay with running backs and tight ends,” he said.

Watching Ware was a big deal to him.

“He’s a beast on the football field,” Wilber said. “He looks like a monster, really. I tried to at least play like him. Be physical with offensive tackles and tight ends and try to destroy the quarterback.”

Wilber had 13 1/2 sacks and 35 1/2 tackles for loss in is career at Wake Forest. He caused six fumbles, recovered three, knocked down six passes and blocked four kicks.

“It feels great that they actually want me to come and help them improve,” he said. “I know the defense is hard hitting and they play hard, especially with Sean Lee and DeMarcus Ware.”

Wilber said he got a good feeling from the Cowboys coaches when he visited Valley Ranch.

“It was just a lot of love,” he said. “They kind of taught me some of the plays to see if I understood the scheme and everything. It’s just been a great experience for me to go to Dallas. They showed a lot of love, especially the fans. The stadium is amazing. It feels like I’m back at Wake Forest, so it’s just a lot of great people there in Dallas. I love it. That was the only visit I took.”

Wilber said the Cowboys tested him on their defensive scheme, to see if he could remember the plays they were showing him.

How did he do?

“Rob told me I was the best one so far.”

-- Carlos Mendez

Twitter @calexmendez

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