The Super Bowl is in the books which means that all eyes in the National Football League are firmly fixated on the offseason acquisition period. Free agency will be here before we know it and what various teams do will undoubtedly influence how they attack the 2020 NFL Draft.
The Cowboys have a lot of financial decisions to make inside of their own building before they can really consider going out to acquire others, but regardless of what extensions they do or do not get, there is no doubt that they are going to need to hit their first-round pick out of the park.
Dallas has done very well in the first round over the last decade. Consider the last 10 selections (kind of) that they have made.
Dallas Cowboys first-round picks, 2010-2019:
- 2010: Dez Bryant
- 2011: Tyron Smith
- 2012: Morris Claiborne (traded up)
- 2013: Travis Frederick
- 2014: Zack Martin
- 2015: Byron Jones
- 2016: Ezekiel Elliott
- 2017: Taco Charlton
- 2018: Leighton Vander Esch
- 2019: (traded for Amari Cooper)
As you are likely aware the Cowboys have a very strong recent history of finding a legitimate contributor with their first selection. Last year was quite boring as they didn’t have a first-rounder due to trading it for Amari Cooper, and that puts a lot of pressure in their 2020 selection.
PFF has the Cowboys trading up in the first round in their latest mock
Whether or not the Cowboys are able to sign a safety in free agency, it is unlikely that they will sign someone that legitimately addresses the current state of the position (current state in that it’s not very good). It has long been time that Dallas seriously invests at the safety spot and many believe they will use their first-round pick to do so.
The folks over at PFF released their second mock draft of the offseason on Monday and in it they had the Cowboys drafting a safety. The thing is, though, they had them trading up to 13th overall to do so.
13. DALLAS COWBOYS (VIA INDIANAPOLIS COLTS) — S XAVIER MCKINNEY, ALABAMA
With a roster built to win now, Dallas goes up and gets an immediate impact player at safety. McKinney has the sort of all-around game that can do anything asked of him in Mike Nolan’s defense. He had grades over 79.0 in run defense, coverage and pass-rush each of the past two seasons.
NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah recently referred to McKinney as “the best safety in the draft” which obviously means that he has him ranked ahead of LSU’s Grant Delpit. There are certainly things to like about both options.
It’s likely hard for an average Cowboys fan to be okay with trading up. The last time they did so in the first round was to acquire Morris Claiborne eight years ago, although to be fair he did just win a Super Bowl, granted that was with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Dallas would obviously have to be in love with somebody to move up although this is only four spots. Would you be fine doing that for a player like Xavier McKinney?