After selecting Ezekiel Elliott in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys could be looking to make yet another splash move in the second round. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport has reported that the Cowboys are looking to acquire the 32nd pick, currently held by the Cleveland Browns, to move up and select a pass-rusher.
[UPDATE] Below there is speculation that they could be chasing Noah Spence, but since this post published, Ian Rapoport was on the NFL Network stating Leon Lett loves Emmanuel Ogbah. Says the defensive line coach put him through a private work out and loved what he saw. So, maybe Ogbah is the target. [END UPDATE]
Just last night, there were rumors going around that the Cowboys were going to trade in the latter part of the first round to select either Shaq Lawson or Paxton Lynch. It has been confirmed that the Cowboys almost had a trade set to get back into the first round for Lynch.
After the first round ended, the Cowboys' front office looked at the available prospects and tried figuring out which would be worth a trade-up. The need for a defensive end has been pressing for quite some time, and considering that players like Noah Spence, Kevin Dodd, and Emmanuel Ogbah are still on the board, the opportunity is there for the Cowboys to acquire what some have labeled as first-round talent.
With the suspensions to both Randy Gregory and DeMarcus Lawrence, on top of thin depth the Cowboys already have at the defensive end position, this trade-up would be a necessary move as the Cowboys are in win-now mode, which was made completely clear when they drafted Elliott to be Tony Romo's running-mate. Spence, Dodd, and Ogbah each bring something special to the table, but if I had to take a guess at who their target with the pick would be, I would say Spence.
Spence is an elite athlete that fits everything the Cowboys look for in their defensive ends. Sure there are some question marks about his character and questions will arise from his time with Ohio State. But if one thing is clear, it's that the Cowboys are no strangers to taking chances on players with talent and off-field issues.
Dallas loves explosiveness and jump off the football. Spence excels in both departments and if/when he puts on some muscle to his frame, there is no question that Spence can be a consistent presence from the left defensive end position. Drafting Spence would not only give the Cowboys another young defensive end to work with, it would also signal the third consecutive time that the Cowboys would be using their second-round pick on a defensive end. Trading up just two picks would cost an extra pick, but if the Cowboys feel comfortable in Spence and what he can become, this a move that will need to be made.