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Peter King: Cowboys would have been wiser to go defense with the pick that nabbed Lamb

Yeah, this doesn’t really make a lot of sense for the Cowboys, or in general.

College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Capital One Orange Bowl - Alabama v Oklahoma Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

We have entered the month of June which is historically the most quiet month on the NFL calendar. Hopefully next month will include some form of training camp, but that remains to be seen.

For the next four weeks people across the NFL landscape will be attempting to put the upcoming season into neat and organized boxes, sometimes by way of power rankings. Peter King is the latest to put together his list and he has the Dallas Cowboys in his top 10.

There has been a lot of positive attention shined upon the Cowboys over the last couple of months, especially over the excellent draft that partly took place on Jerry Jones’ yacht. So much of this was due to the fact that the Cowboys were able to land CeeDee Lamb with their first pick, but King believes the Cowboys would have been better off going a different route.

Peter King thinks the Cowboys should have gone defense over CeeDee Lamb

When the Cowboys were on the clock with the 17th overall pick there were plenty of fans concerned that the team was going to prioritize a need - say defensive end - over the true best player available. Doing something like this would have led to Dallas drafting someone like K’Lavon Chaisson over CeeDee Lamb. Most observers are thankful that this did not happen.

In his aforementioned power rankings ahead of the 2020 season, Peter King has the Cowboys slotted in as the ninth best team in the NFL, but he believes that they should have handled their first draft pick differently. It is his opinion that the Cowboys should have gone defense... over CeeDee Lamb.

I still feel like the Cowboys would have been wiser to go defense with the pick that nabbed Lamb—even better, a trade-down to get a corner and a safety in rounds one and two—after losing sack leader Robert Quinn and top cornerback Byron Jones in free agency. Dak Prescott certainly can win his share of 33-30 games; now, for the Cowboys to beat Philadelphia for the NFC East crown, he’ll have to. I think the Cowboys are the team to beat in the division, but one of the toughest November/December slates in football (Eagles twice, Steelers and Niners at home, Ravens and Vikings away) will make it very difficult.

This doesn’t make sense for a lot of reasons. First of all, Peter King is seemingly generalizing in saying that any defensive player at all would have been better than CeeDee Lamb because, well, they play defense. That is literally the exact type of drafting that Cowboys fans wanted to see the team get away from.

Leaning on the idea that the team absolutely needed to have a defensive player would have led to the Cowboys passing on a highly-talented player. One like, oh I don’t know, CeeDee Lamb. The Cowboys were firm in noting that Lamb was sixth on their board, you don’t pass on that value at 17 overall in the name of casting a wide net on the defensive side of the ball.

Next 10 defensive players drafted after CeeDee Lamb:

  • CB Damon Arnette
  • DE K’Lavon Chaisson
  • LB Kenneth Murray
  • LB Jordyn Brooks
  • LB Patrick Queen
  • CB Noah Igbinoghene
  • CB Jeff Gladney
  • S Xavier McKinney
  • S Kyle Dugger
  • DE Yetur Gross-Matos

It would have been great for the Cowboys to land a safety in the draft (lather, rinse, repeat) but the draft simply did not fall that way. What’s more is that Peter King’s point in preferring defense over CeeDee Lamb is partly that the Cowboys could use cornerback help... they were literally able to land a highly-touted cornerback prospect with their next pick in Trevon Diggs.

There are legitimate flaws in every team’s draft process to point out, we all know that. Noting that a defensive player, any defensive player, would have been a “wiser” choice for the Dallas Cowboys with the 17th overall pick does not seem to be one of them.