In the next few weeks, the Dallas Cowboys will face one of the tougher franchise decisions in recent memory. With the 2015 season in the books, the Cowboys can forget about their injury-riddled year where they finished last in the division.
Currently, the most plausible options with the pick are Joey Bosa, Ezekiel Elliott, Jalen Ramsey, Jared Goff, and Carson Wentz. Looking at all five players, each fills a need and each could very well be a franchise-type player for the Cowboys, meaning he would be here for at least ten years. Unfortunately, if the first three picks stay the same, there is a high probability that Laremy Tunsil, Goff or Wentz, and Ramsey are off the board in that order. If that is the case, the Cowboys should look into the prospects of trading down.
Dallas' biggest hole on the roster at the moment is defensive end. And if the Cowboys' draft logic is to draft for need, then Bosa will seemingly be the man for the job. However, when you take a defensive end in the top five, you have to hope he develops into what Von Miller or Khalil Mack have become. I see Bosa turning into an above-average starter in the NFL, but I'm not entirely sure he can turn into a guy who can challenge for the sack lead each season.
Going onto the next player, Elliott would be an excellent find behind the Cowboys' offensive line. For awhile now, people have said that anybody can run behind this offensive line. That may be true, but for the Cowboys to fully get the most out of their offensive line, they should be willing to bring in a stud back that can fully maximize this line's potential. The perfect fit seems to be Elliott, but with the team signing Alfred Morris to a two-year deal, the Cowboys may benefit more by waiting until next year's draft to select a running back. After all, some options in the following draft include Christian McCaffrey, Leonard Fournette, and Dalvin Cook.
Going onto quarterbacks, whether that be Wentz, Goff, or even Paxton Lynch, I find it hard to believe that the Cowboys will draft a guy who won't be an immediate starter from the get-go. By drafting a quarterback, the Cowboys make it a precedent to care more about the future rather than improving the team and giving it a better chance of a Super Bowl run in the last years of Tony Romo's career.
So what's the best option for Dallas in 2016 and beyond? What exactly is the way where the Cowboys can benefit next year's team and the franchise's future at the same? Well, one way to do that is trading back. For those that have followed the Cowboys, it's a known fact that Jerry Jones is going to move around at least one way or another when the draft rolls around.
Dallas moved back just a few years ago and they not only picked up extra draft picks, but they selected Pro Bowl center Travis Frederick at the same time. Dallas' scouting department has proved that it can find talent anywhere in the draft and if there is a player that the Cowboys believe will fall, there should be no reason why they don't pull off a blockbuster move and trade back.
With three quarterbacks all deserving of first-round attention, the Cowboys would be wise to call up quarterback-needy teams to move back. This draft is deep in the positions the Cowboys are in need of. If they are wise, Dallas can cash in by bringing in multiple players who can make a difference from the get-go. With an unclear route of who to use their first-round pick on, the safe route for the Cowboys might just be to trade back, pick up extra draft picks, and shape their draft board so they can nab a guy who's falling past where they evaluated him.