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Five winners and five losers from the 2019 Dallas Cowboys Draft

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What’s the impact of the eight new players on the Cowboys organization?

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The 2019 Dallas Cowboys draft class is officially set, and there’s a lot to be excited about.

Despite not having a first-round selection the Cowboys managed to bring in some players that are going to help this football team.

2019 Dallas Cowboys Draft Class

  • 2nd Round: Trysten Hill, DT, Central Florida
  • 3rd Round: Connor McGovern, G, Penn State
  • 4th Round: Tony Pollard, RB, Memphis
  • 5th Round: Michael Jackson, CB, Miami
  • 5th Round: Joe Jackson, DE, Miami
  • 6th Round: Donovan Wilson, S, Texas A&M
  • 7th Round: Mike Weber, RB, Ohio State
  • 7th Round: Jalen Jelks, DE, Oregon

What do these players say about the state of the 2019 team? Who’s jobs are on the line and which situations got better? Let’s discuss.


Winner: Jeff Heath

Jeff Heath was part of the Cowboys contingent that went on the fishing trip this weekend, and his big catch wasn’t the only awesome thing to happen to him over the course of the last few days.

Dallas was staring a new starting safety in the face at pick number 58, but instead of taking Juan Thornhill or Taylor Rapp, they went with Trysten Hill. This keeps Jeff Heath more firmly in the rotation, even though the Cowboys also signed George Iloka not too long ago.

Obviously the Cowboys still drafted a safety in Donovan Wilson, but he’s unlikely to threaten Heath’s status on defense. Overall it was a good weekend for Jeff.


Winner: Rod Marinelli

The Cowboys finally gave Rod Marinelli a legitimate defensive tackle to work with. Good for them.

We’ve seen Rod go at it with guys like Jason Hatcher, Henry Melton, Stephen Paea, and even though he played nicely last season, Antwaun Woods. Trysten Hill is the first time they’ve given him somebody that he was in love with to make the middle of his defensive line work.

It’s no secret that Rod Marinelli has considered retirement before. Getting the guys he likes sure has to make sticking around all the more easy.


Winner: The Cowboys backfield in general

Dallas has tried to go at it in the backfield outside of their primary ballcarrier with all sorts of options in recent memory. Behind Ezekiel Elliott they didn’t really have much, but do you need much when you have Zeke?

With the additions of Tony Pollard and Zeke’s former teammate Mike Weber, Dallas now has options back there. They’ve also tried to get cute with things here and use both Ryan Switzer and Tavon Austin in the backfield, with someone like Pollard in tow they no longer have to experiment like that. That also makes Austin a winner to a degree.

Weber is a more likely true “backup” to Zeke with Pollard serving as a specialty weapon. So much of what he’ll be able to contribute is limited by what Kellen Moore is able to do with him, but overall this helps everybody have more defined roles.


Winner: The offensive line both now and in the future

So much has happened that the Connor McGovern pick feels like forever ago. In reality, the Cowboys have a brand new guard with center flexibility to help out their current all-world group. Strengthening your strength is a good idea.

What’s more is the Cowboys could conceivably lose La’el Collins in free agency next year. If they already are planning on moving Connor Williams out to right tackle then and replacing him with their new Connor at left guard, good for them on having that foresight.


Winner: Jason Witten and the rest of the tight ends

They started with six picks and ended with eight, but the Dallas Cowboys did not take a single tight end during the 2019 NFL Draft. They clearly believe in what they have on their roster at the moment.

Obviously what they have is a bunch of “um... okay” especially since Jason Witten is back. Sure, Blake Jarwin has some potential and people are excited to see how Dalton Schultz will do in year two, but what about the future? Do we really feel like a future star is on the team currently?

This is the riskiest decision that they made.


Loser: Taco Charlton

The Dallas Cowboys drafted two defensive ends in Joe Jackson and Jalen Jelks. This gives them quite the crowd at the position:

  • DeMarcus Lawrence
  • Robert Quinn
  • Tyrone Crawford (kind of)
  • Kerry Hyder
  • Taco Charlton
  • Dorance Armstrong
  • Joe Jackson
  • Jalen Jelks

Of course, Dallas still has Randy Gregory and if he plays at all that will be a huge bonus. To be fair, Jelks was a seventh-round pick so it’s not like he absolutely has to make the roster, but the point is there are a lot of people and Taco Charlton is barely somewhere in the middle of the group.

2019 is going to be an important year for Charlton. He’s entering his third season and is going to be expected to make a jump. In his defense though, how can he? There are talented defensive ends to the point that it will be hard to get on the field consistently.

Now there are even more.


Loser: Sanjay Lal

While Rod Marinelli got his guy and Kris Richard got some new toys (granted not the ones he probably really wanted), Sanjay Lal didn’t get any new receivers. Boo.

Of course, Lal technically got Amari Cooper with a pick that belonged to the Cowboys in this class, but he didn’t get any over the course of the last three days. Dallas does have a promising trio in Cooper, Michael Gallup, and Randall Cobb, but the future of the slot is so unknown. This could have been the time to fix that.


Loser: La’el Collins... depending on how you define things

With the drafting of McGovern the future of the Cowboys’ offensive line is all the more stable. You know that, duh. We just talked about it.

That kind of means that the Cowboys are planning on moving on from Collins next offseason, or at least preparing to. To be fair the only reason that they would do this is if he got paid by someone else, so it’s not really that Collins is a loser it’s just that this situation could help spell the end of his time in Dallas.

Oh well.


Loser: Darius Jackson

With the Cowboys drafting both Tony Pollard and Mike Weber, not to mention the fact that they brought back fullback Jamize Olawale, it’s safe to say that Jackson’s days in Dallas are numbered.

Radius, as he’s affectionately known, has been a fan favorite of many. He’s had a long road in the NFL as the Cowboys moved on from him and he somehow ended back with them.

The reality now is that there is just too much competition. Given that the Cowboys will likely go deep somewhere else they are probably not going to carry four running backs. Fare thee well, old friend.


Loser: The obvious position needs

Look, the Cowboys got answers at defensive tackle and running back throughout the draft, but they are basically in the same spot now that they were on Monday at both safety and tight end.

These are important positions (there are no unimportant ones to be fair). The Cowboys are going to be depending on Jason Witten’s return plus Kris Richard’s continued development of their fun bunch at safety. For a team that has aspirations of at least finishing in the NFL’s final four, that’s an awfully large roll of the dice.

Hopefully the plan works.