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Recent history offers an idea of what trading out of number 10 overall could yield for Cowboys

Here is what number 10 overall could fetch for the Cowboys in a trade.

San Francisco 49ers v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

Getting any two Dallas Cowboys fans to agree on what they want the team to do in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft is not exactly an easy task. It feels like most people prefer Alabama’s Patrick Surtain II of the options that are likely going to be available, but there is certainly a contingent crossing their fingers in hopes that Kyle Pitts will somehow make it all the way to double digits. There is another cornerback whom some prefer over Surtain in Jaycee Horn. Beyond these three options. there are some who would feel pleased if Dallas wound up with either tackle option in Penei Sewell or Rashawn Slater.

It stands to reason that a number (not necessarily a large one) of these players are going to be available when the Cowboys finally come on the clock. This idea has led to a campaign for them to trade out, but what sort of compensation would doing so even yield?

Recent history offers an idea of what trading out of number 10 overall could yield for Cowboys

Trading back certainly has its benefits, the obvious one in that it would give the Cowboys more draft capital to work with (they are starting with 10 picks so MOAR is one mindset to have) and if they still walk away with a player that they like then that is an ideal result.

Mel Kiper’s latest mock draft actually had the Cowboys trading back and saw them drop five spots to number 15 overall where the New England Patriots currently sit. New England came up for quarterback Justin Fields and the Cowboys were still able to land Jaycee Horn while adding a 2022 first-round pick to their arsenal.

Far be it from me to be a downer, but this doesn’t exactly seem conceivable given recent draft trades. The 10th overall pick has actually been dealt on draft day in three of the previous six years, twice for quarterbacks like this hypothetical outlines, and only one time saw the team moving backwards pick up a future first-rounder.

Tradeouts near number 10 overall (2016-2020)

Year Team Trading Out What They Received What They Gave Up Team They Traded With
Year Team Trading Out What They Received What They Gave Up Team They Traded With
2016 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1st (11 overall): Vernon Hargreaves III 1st (9 overall): Leonard Floyd Chicago Bears
4th (106 overall): Eric Murray
2017 Buffalo Bills 1st (27 overall): Tre'Davious White 1st (10 overall): Patrick Mahomes Kansas City Chiefs
3rd (91 overall, later traded): John Johnson
2018 1st (22 overall, later traded): Rashaan Evans
2018 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1st (12 overall): Vita Vea 1st (7 overall): Josh Allen Buffalo Bills
2nd (53 overall): M.J. Stewart 7th (255 overall): Austin Proehl
2nd (56 overall, later traded): Duke Dawson
2018 Oakland Raiders 1st (15 overall): Kolton Miller 1st (10 overall): Josh Rosen Arizona Cardinals
3rd (79 overall, later traded): Rasheem Green
5th (152 overall, later traded): Dane Cruikshank
2019 Denver Broncos 1st (20 overall): Noah Fant 1st (10 overall): Devin Bush Pittsburgh Steelers
2nd (52 overall, later traded): Drew Sample
2020 3rd (83 overall): Lloyd Cushenberry III

It was the Buffalo Bills who picked up a future first-round pick (the Patrick Mahomes trade) for moving out of number 10 overall, but they had to drop all the way to number 27 for that price to make sense. A dip that far justifies more serious compensation.

Consider that the then-Oakland Raiders actually moved from number 10 to 15 like Kiper’s hypothetical dictated, and even did so for a team that used the pick on a quarterback with the Arizona Cardinals and Josh Rosen. Oakland only received a third- and fifth-round pick to move back five spots. Again, not to be the bearer of bad news here, but a future first-round pick seems rather inconceivable given the price that was set just three years ago at these exact points in the draft.

The Chicago Bears sit at pick number 20, and we learned the price of trading back to there two years ago

Another team that has been suggested as a potential trade partner for the Cowboys in the first round is the Chicago Bears. While Chicago signed Andy Dalton and is acting as if he is their starting quarterback, the former Cowboy would be wise to pay attention to what happened to Mike Glennon when the Bears touted him as their unquestioned starter.

Chicago sits at number 20 overall this year which would mean the Cowboys would have to double their way backwards from number 10. Incidentally the Denver Broncos moved back from 10 to 20 during the 2019 NFL Draft when the Pittsburgh Steelers really wanted Devin Bush, and “all” they picked up for it was a second-round pick and future third-rounder.

Denver wound up using the second-round pick they acquired to move up in that same second round to draft quarterback Drew Lock. In fact, as you can see from the chart, most of the examples where teams traded out of number 10 (or near it) involved them moving capital they received in future trades. That would obviously be a possibility for Dallas as they would be adding to an already rather large pile of picks.

If the Cowboys traded back to say 20 overall then any likelihood of walking away with someone like Jaycee Horn would be severely impacted. Perhaps the Cowboys could do something like roll the dice on Caleb Farley and then use the capital they acquired in whatever hypothetical trade to move up from 44 overall for someone like Christian Barmore. That is merely one potential way that things could shake out, the overall point is that having more picks means that you have a lot more options if you are creative enough to think of them.

Inflation is a real thing which means that any trade to these particular points wouldn’t exactly be the same in 2021, however, this recent history gives us a loose idea at what the going rate could be if the Cowboys do plan on trading back during the draft.

For what it’s worth, all of the trades listed here did occur on draft day, meaning that everything we think we know about how this is going to play out for Dallas could go out the window just before they are on the clock.

Be prepared for anything.