Let me say first and foremost that of the players who could realistically be available at the 14th pick, I would be most in favor of selecting David DeCastro. I think that the Peyton Manning situation could end up affecting the Cowboys chances of landing DeCastro. If Manning ends up in Arizona as some speculate, you would have to think that their #1 priority would immediately become the safety of their new QB. In that scenario, it's hard to imagine DeCastro escaping Arizona's #13 pick. But in a scenario that has DeCastro off the board at #14, why is no one considering Alabama LB Dont'a Hightower for our Cowboys?
I think that the schematic versatily that Hightower offers would be a huge tool for the Cowboys defense. Hightower played literally everywhere in Alabama's defense. Inside, outside, hand on the ground. Go back and watch some Alabama games. Hightower is violent, instinctive, and explosive. He has outstanding measurables, and he's not just some workout warrior, we knew he was an top-notch football player long before the shorts and stopwatches came out.
People want to pidgeonhole this guy as an ILB but I just don't see it. Every scouting report you read about Hightower speaks glowingly of his ability to rush the passer; and it shows up on tape. It's quite possible that Hightower was miscast or at least underutilized at Alabama, because when put in a position to rush the passer, he brought the heat. Just because he wasn't an every-down outside linebacker at 'Bama doesn't mean he can't be one in the NFL. Honestly I don't think he needs to be. I think he could play any of the four LB positions in the Cowboys defense. In my opinion, I prefer him over Luke Kuechly inside, and I like him better than Courtney Upshaw outside.
With Anthony Spencer getting the Franchise Tag, I'm not sure the team has a definite need at any LB spot. I'm not entirely interested in drafting for need. Im interested in stockpiling quality football players. I don't think you worry about "What do we do with Bruce Carter?" or "What do we do with Anthony Spencer?". You pay Rob Ryan to be creative right? So you hand him 5 good linebackers and tell him to work it out.
The complexion of this draft will become clearer after free agency, and we will then maybe have a little better idea about what the Cowboys want to do with their picks. But as it stands right now, Im interested in adding as many quality football players to this team as possible. Dont'a Hightower more than fits the bill, and I think he's worthy of consideration with pick #14.