Sports Outside the Beltway

Dallas Cowboys 2009 Draft – Day 1

The Cowboys traded their 2009 1st, 3rd, and 6th round picks to the Detroit Lions for WR Roy Williams and a 2010 7th rounder.  Thus far, it has been an awful trade but Williams was hurt and didn’t have the benefit of an offseason working with Tony Romo and the Cowboys’ system.  Those excuses will be gone this season.

The trade meant that the Cowboys’ first chance to pick came at the #51 spot but they traded that pick to the Buffalo Bills for their 3rd and 4th round picks.  Indeed, those of us watching on television thought the Cowboys had “passed” on the pick entirely!   Apparently, they had their sights set on Oregon center Max Unger but the Seattle Seahawks traded up and grabbed him two spots earlier.  Thinking there were no players left worth spending a 2nd rounder on, they pulled the trigger on the trade.

So, Day 1 of the draft was a complete bust for Cowboys fans.  With a whopping twelve picks on day 2, though, Jean Jacques Taylor says there are no excuses for not dominating today.

There will be no acceptable excuses today for the Cowboys failing to obtain every single player they covet because they will control the draft. That’s what having two picks in the third round and three picks in the fourth and fifth rounds does for them.

They can target specific players and, with the bevy of picks they’ve accumulated, easily move up and down the board to scoop them up.

The Cowboys entered this draft needing to shore up their secondary since Roy Williams and Adam Jones have been released, backup Keith Davis is a free agent and so many teams use formations with three and four receivers.  The Cowboys also need to improve their depth at receiver since Miles Austin and Sam Hurd have combined to catch 42 NFL passes. While the Cowboys love Austin and they like Hurd, neither has proved anything yet.

The Cowboys entered the second round with several potential candidates, but five of the 21 players they brought in for predraft visits were selected with the first 17 picks of the round.

But he also makes a good point:

Jerry [Jones] didn’t seem to think there were many players in the draft who could help this team right away aside from contributing on special teams or third downs.

Well, this team didn’t make the playoffs. It has holes. It’s not flawless.

It’s just hard to believe none of the draft’s top 64 players can have an impact on this team. It almost sounds like the philosophy the Cowboys espoused during the 1995 draft. The Cowboys drafted backup players that year because they were so talented, they didn’t believe anyone could break the starting lineup and didn’t want to pay players to sit on the bench.

It’s too early to evaluate this draft, obviously.  But every single other team in the division — the New York Giants, the Philadelphia Eagles, and the Washington Redskins — got significantly better yesterday.  The Cowboys didn’t.   They’ve got some serious catching up to do today.

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