Dallas Cowboys Pre-Draft Visits: Who Will They Bring In This Year?

Many draft prospects will make their first trip to Dallas next week.

From Monday through Wednesday next week, the Cowboys will bring in up to 30 draft-eligible national prospects for pre-draft visits. The Cowboys will follow up those visits on Thursday and Friday next week, with 'Dallas Day' visits for local prospects who went to college or high school in the Dallas/Fort-Worth.

In recent years, the national visits have been a pretty good indicator of which players and which positions the Cowboys were going to select in the ensuing draft. The number of invited players per position usually corresponds fairly well with which positions the Cowboys eventually drafted on draft weekend.

Also, the Cowboys' last six top picks - Bobby Carpenter, Anthony Spencer, Felix Jones, Jason Williams, Dez Bryant and Tyron Smith - all visited Valley Ranch as part of the Cowboys' pre-draft visits. The last top pick the Cowboys did not invite for a visit prior to the draft was DeMarcus Ware in 2005. This year could be the 7th consecutive year the Cowboys bring their top draft pick in for a pre-draft visit.

Unusually for the Cowboys - but perhaps characteristically for the Garrett-led Cowboys - we've only heard of a couple of names so far who are coming in for a visit, even though those visits are only two more days away.

Each NFL team is permitted to invite up to 30 national draft prospects for a pre-draft visit every year. Per league rules, these visits are not workouts, they are strictly meet and greets where the team can get a better feel for the players and the medical staff can conduct more thorough medical checkups. Additionally, teams can invite as many local prospects as they want for a workout during Dallas Days.

Here are the players we know of so far who are coming in for a visit, either as a national prospect or as a local prospect for 'Dallas Days'.

National Prospects
Player Pos. School Proj. Round
Dre Kirkpatrick CB Alabama 1
Michael Brockers DT LSU 1
Amini Silatolu OG Midwestern State 2
Ronnell Lewis OLB Oklahoma 2
Casey Hayward CB Vanderbilt 3-4
Chris Greenwood CB Albion 7-UDFA
Lionel Smith CB Texas A&M UDFA
Ronald Leary OG Memphis UDFA
Chase Baker NT Boise State UDFA
Korey Toomer ILB Idaho UDFA
Local Prospects invited for Dallas Days
Player Pos. School Proj. Round
Keenan Robinson LB Texas 3-4
Jeff Fuller WR Texas A&M 4-5
Emmanuel Acho LB Texas 5
Tank Carder LB TCU 6
Ron Brooks CB LSU 6
Nathan Dick QB Central Arkansas UDFA

Watch closely over the next few days as word trickles out about which players have received invitations to Valley Ranch - the chances are high that the Cowboys' top pick will be on the list. Next week, Rabblerouser will review the full list of known names once we have it and draw some conclusions from both the national prospect list and the Dallas Days list.

The table below summarizes all the players (that I could find) invited for national pre-draft visits to Valley Ranch over the last four years. The players who eventually ended up with the Cowboys are highlighted in yellow. Armed to the teeth with the benefit of hindsight, it's easy to see how this invitation list is a good indicator of whom the Cowboys will draft.

Pre-draft visitors to Valley Ranch, 2008-2011

2011
Pick WR Pick OL Pick CB Pick S Pick DE Pick LB Pick RB - - - -
26 Jon Baldwin 9 OT Tyron Smith 19 Prince Amukamara 45 Rahim Moore 11 J.J. Watt 40 Bruce Carter 71 DeMarco Murray - - - -
111 Edmond Gates 15 OG Mike Pouncey 34 Aaron Williams 100 Da'Norris Searcy 94 Kenrick Ellis 67 Nate Irving 73 Stevan Ridley

114 Cecil Shorts 17 OT Nate Solder 88 Johnny Patrick 108 Quinton Carter 106 Christian Ballard 68 Kelvin Sheppard 126 Bilal Powell

- - Andre Holmes 22 OT Anthony Castonzo 89
Shareece Wright
248 Eric Hagg 72 Martez Wilson

32 OT Derek Sherrod 139 Brandon Burton

76 OG Will Rackley 207 Korey Lindsey

2010
Pick WR Pick OL Pick CB Pick S Pick DE Pick LB Pick FB - - - -
24 Dez Bryant 17 OG Mike Iupati 29 Kyle Wilson 37 Nate Allen 10 Tyson Alualu 55 Sean Lee 125 Clay Harbor - - - -
39 Arrelious Benn 18 C/G Maurkice Pouncey 27 Devin McCourty 49 Taylor Mays 28 Jared Odrick 91 Navorro Bowman 139 John Conner

78 Brandon LaFell 61 OT Vlad Ducasse 76 Chad Jones 71 Morgan Burnett 190 Travis Goethel

82 Emmanuel Sanders* 73 OG John Jerry 96 Brandon Ghee

90 Taylor Price 80 OC J.D. Walton* 126 Akwasi Owusu-Ansah

191 Dezmon Briscoe* 106 OT Bruce Campbell

194 OT Ramon Harewood

228 OG Reggie Stephens


2009
Pick WR Pick OL Pick CB Pick S Pick DE Pick LB Pick QB Pick TE
36 Brian Robiskie 58 OT Sebastian Vollmer 42 Jairus Byrd 33 Louis Delmas 68 Jarron Gilbert 16 Larry English 101 Stephen McGee 122 Anthony Hill
50 Mohamed Massaquoi 66 Bradley Fletcher 48 Darcel McBath 69 Jason Williams 174 Tom Brandstater 152 James Casey
83 Brandon Tate 166 Michael Hamlin 125 Lawrence Sidbury - - Chase Daniel
87 Patrick Turner 150 Jasper Brinkley
154 Marcus Freeman
2010
Pick WR Pick OL Pick CB Pick S Pick DE Pick LB Pick RB Pick TE
41 James Hardy 15 G Branden Albert 11 Leodis McKelvin - -
- -
- -
- -
9 Keith Rivers 13 Jonathan Stewart 61 Martellus Bennett
51 Malcolm Kelly 26 OT Duane Brown 16 Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie



10 Jerod Mayo 22 Felix Jones

53 Limas Sweed 20 Aqib Talib* 104 Beau Bell 23 Rashard Mendenhall

105 Will Franklin 27 Antoine Cason 24 Chris Johnson

128 Keenan Burton 35 Brandon Flowers 73 Jamaal Charles

40 Tracy Porter
62 Terrence Wheatley*
67 Charles Godfrey

* denotes players who count as a local prospects

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