Cowboys Draft Rumors & News: It's Not All Johnny Manziel, But Mostly

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

Okay, the Johnny Manziel insanity is off the charts, let's take a look at some other angles on it, plus some other draft tidbits.

I know, you've probably had enough of the Johnny Manziel to Dallas rumors, even though that is pretty much dominating the Cowboys space this morning. But, let's look at it from this angle. If Manziel did fall to #16, would this be great news for the Cowboys - for trade down purposes? Ian Rapoport thinks that's exactly what the Cowboys would do in that situation.

He also mentioned the same a couple of days ago.

"(The Cowboys) would love to be on the clock with Johnny Manziel sitting there, but not to take him. Not to take him," Rapoport said on NFL Network’s NFL Total Access. "Just so they would have some ammunition for a potential trade for some team wanting to come up and grab Johnny Manziel."

That presumes there are teams behind the Cowboys looking at QBs. A lot of those teams have solid QBs, but a few might be interested. Still, it seems like if he falls all the way to 16, it would have to be a team at the top of the second round trying to get back in. Would they have enough ammunition to satisfy the Cowboys?

Here's how silly the Manziel talk has gotten. Because he's playing in a golf tournament in Dallas on Tuesday, that might mean the Cowboys have already decided to get him. I kid you not.

According to the Dallas Morning News, Manziel is expected to participate in the Nelson Celebrity-Pro Am on Tuesday at Dallas National and the Golf Pro-Am at Las Colinas Country Club on Wednesday. Both events are within 20 miles of AT&T Stadium. No, we're not trying to say this is all pre-arranged, that Jerry Jones taking Manziel Thursday night is a fait accompli. But it is interesting. Now if it was the Cowboys who actually did end up with Manziel, how convenient would it be, from a marketing standpoint, to have Manziel in your own backyard, wearing the star on his baseball cap, hanging out with other Cowboys players on the golf course just days after being drafted by the local team?

And how about this for a Manziel rumor?

If he falls to them at No. 12, the New York Giants reportedly would "seriously consider" drafting Manziel on Thursday night, a source told NJ.com. That's an intriguing and partially mystifying landing spot for Johnny Football, with two-time Super Bowl winner Eli Manning firmly entrenched as New York's franchise arm.

Ha, let the Giants deal with the circus.

On to other things, how about a mock where the Cowboys move all the way up to #5 to get Aaron Donald?

5. Dallas Cowboys (VIA MOCK TRADE with Oakland Raiders) -- Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh — Imagine the pandemonium at Radio City and on TV when it's announced that Jerry Jones comes flying up to No. 5 and everyone thinks he's grabbing Johnny Manziel. But he's actually coming up to get the most productive defensive tackle in this draft and a perfect fit for the Cowboys scheme, into Rod Marinelli's hands. The truly logical trade is with the Vikings at No. 8, but maybe Minnesota's the primary team Jones has to hop in order to keep Donald away from Mike Zimmer. Reggie McKenzie shouldn't be scared of trading down in a deep draft with Oakland's lack of talent on the roster.

How far would you be willing to move up for Donald if you're willing to move up at all?

We already talked about Ryan Shazier being a fallback guy if Donald, Anthony Barr and Zack Martin are already gone. But how would you feel about this?

16. Dallas Cowboys -- Demarcus Lawrence, DE, Boise State: With Donald and Barr gone, I think they should take Lawrence to help that pass rush.

Hmm, kind of a reach, but he does fit the bill of a pass rushing defensive end. Or do the Cowboys really need a pass rushing defensive end early in the draft? They think that either Anthony Spencer or Tyrone Crawford could be the starter at right defensive end.

The Cowboys believe recently re-signed defensive end Anthony Spencer can play on either the left or right side in their scheme. A right defensive end is typically an "elite pass-rusher," and the left defensive end is typically a bigger, sturdier player against the run, Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said.

The Cowboys have high expectations for defensive lineman Tyrone Crawford in 2014, but club officials said they will wait until after the draft to decide whether he should play at end or tackle in their scheme.

"We could see him playing right end, we could see him playing left end, he’s played inside, he’s been a nickel rusher, so he really does have position flex," Garrett said. "The big thing with him when you’re talking about deciding, his body can change a little bit. He might be 10 pounds lighter or 10 pounds heavier based on the starting point for his position. I do think it’s important to go through this draft process and see where the numbers are."

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