The Dallas Cowboys got quite the surprise when Oklahoma’s star receiver CeeDee Lamb was still available when it was their turn to pick in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft. While the team had a bigger need at defensive end and had the opportunity to select one of the draft’s top edge rushers in K’Lavon Chaisson, Lamb was just too good to pass up. It was an exciting way to kick off the draft for the Cowboys, but what lies next tonight? Here are four thoughts on yesterday’s action and what we are looking for in the next couple rounds.
1. Stephen Jones might be the rock
There was a part of me that was a little concerned about what the Cowboys draft approach would look like without the influence of the steady hand of Jason Garrett. If this first pick is any indication, the front office remains in great hands as the team was delivered a curve ball, but managed to knock it out of the park due to rock-solid plate discipline.
Lamb wasn’t even one of the team’s official interviews because as Executive Vice President Stephen Jones clarified - they didn’t think he had a shot at making it to pick 17. And when things didn’t go according to plan, the Cowboys adapted like a boss and planted their flag into the concept of “trusting your board.” Alas, #Team40Burger was born.
Can I get mine with a side of fries and a large playoff run? And super size it! pic.twitter.com/imIuWzn8lV— Dan Rogers (@DannyPhantom24) April 24, 2020
Will McClay is still the straw that stirs this drink, but it’s really impressive to see the growth of Stephen Jones. Listening to the post-draft press conference, Stephen is the voice of reason and seems to have a great sense of integrity of trusting their draft process, and that bodes well for the future of this franchise.
2. CeeDee is special
If the Cowboys are going to keep their run of All-Pro first-round draft picks going, drafting a player like Lamb gives them their best chances. Lamb has gotten better every year he’s played in college and look at him rack up those touchdown totals.
He’s a dynamic receiver who can do so many different things. Lamb is tough to contain in the open field and makes the most of every opportunity he catches the ball. He’s a yards-after-the-catch monster, but one of his most impressive traits is how he controls his body and goes up and gets the ball. These skills were on full display at the combine which seemed to put Lamb out of the mix for Dallas as many people didn’t think he’d fall that far.
3. They need a run on wide receivers
For the most part, the draft was business as usual in terms what positions were being selected. Four tackles came off the board as well as the three quarterbacks we expected to see taken before the Cowboys were up. The only real surprise that benefited Dallas was the order of the wide receivers taken. Lamb was no. 6 on the Cowboys board, but both the Alabama receivers Henry Ruggs III and Jerry Jeudy were selected before him, leaving the Cowboys top guy available.
Since the Cowboys wide receiver situation is sitting in great shape, it would be beneficial for the other remaining receivers to start coming off the board. Fellow BTB Alum, rabblerousr hits the nail right on the head...
Now that the Cowboys have picked a WR, every WR that comes off the board is a win for them. Pushing other positions one pick closer to #51...— rabblerousr (@rabblerousr) April 24, 2020
Tee Higgins, Denzel Mims, Laviska Shenault Jr., K.J. Hamler, and Michael Pittman Jr. are nice prospects for the second round, and it would be super cool if those guys started coming off the board before the Cowboys were up, possibly opening the door for a more desirable prospect to fall to Dallas in the second round.
Speaking of which...
4. Who do we want for 51?
Ideally, it would be great if the Cowboys could land a starting caliber corner at pick 51. There were three corners selected after the Cowboys in the first round, including the surprise early selection of Damon Arnette. There are still a few players available that could fall to Dallas, including Trevon Diggs, Jaylon Johnson, and Kristian Fulton.
The top safeties are also there in Xavier McKinney and Grant Delpit. Or maybe there is an edge rusher who makes it to 51 as both Zack Baun and A.J. Epenesa are guys who could have easily been taken late in the first round. Here is my top five list of best available defensive guys for the Cowboys.
The BTB staff put together our top picks, and here is our collective board with the top 12 prospects that could make it to the Cowboys.