NFL Draft 2016: Dallas Cowboys Primary Draft Targets This Offseason

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Feb 10, 2016 02:23 PM EST
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Owner Jerry Jones, right, and head coach Jason Garrett
Owner Jerry Jones, right, and head coach Jason Garrett at the Dallas Cowboys' State of the Team news conference in Oxnard, Calif., on Wednesday, July 23, 2014."

The Dallas Cowboys have a lot to work on this offseason and have needs at every position on the roster. With the number four overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft the Cowboys can go in a million different directions.

One thing is certain; they will not reach for an unproven commodity such as a quarterback in the first round. There is only one if not two first round quarterbacks in this draft Jared Goff and Paxton Lynch. Wentz saw his draft stock sky rocket after the senior bowl however the Cowboys are not going to stop competing for a Super Bowl with the pieces they have now. Tony Romo has 3 solid years left (if he can stay healthy) which means the Romo, Bryant, Witten, Garrett, era of Dallas will still have 3 more opportunities to get it right.

This means building around their already established starters. Besides Dez Bryant there is not another guaranteed receiving threat on this roster. I highly doubt the Cowboys go all out at number 4 and take Laquon Treadwell simply because there are more pressing needs; the Cowboys are high on Terrance Williams and give him another season to grow before drafting someone to replace him. The Cowboys will likely draft a wide receiver or pick one up in free agency but not until late.

Darren McFadden is currently the starting running back while Robert Turbin and Lance Dunbar are free agents. The Cowboys need a running attack so taking Ezekiel Elliott here would make a lot of sense, then again they could trade back and do the same thing they just risk losing Elliott along the way. Elliott is the best back in this draft hands down and would immediately give the Cowboys a running attack for the future.  

The Cowboys could also go after Derrick Henry in the 2nd round since they pick relatively early. On the defensive side of the ball the Cowboys will look to rebuild their secondary as they will likely release Brandon Carr and Morris Claiborne to make some cap room. I think they will go after a veteran cornerback in free agency like Trumaine Johnson, Janoris Jenkins, or Sean Smith as the Cowboys drafted Byron Jones in the first round last season. Adding a proven and productive veteran would give this secondary a whole new type of swagger. At safety Jones has played in some sets but drafting a guy like Jalen Ramsey would give them a ton of versatility in their defensive backfield.

The Cowboys secondary would likely play better and see the return of Orlando Scandrick. There will be a need for a brand new defensive end and they may be harder to come by than any other position in free agency. The draft is absolutely packed with pass rushers so picking Joey Bosa or Noah Spence would make a lot more sense. Grooming pass rushers for larger roles is something that Dallas has been doing since they began to rebuild their offensive line a couple of years ago. Bringing in Bosa would give this defense a whole new pass rush and allow the Cowboys to not spend money on a big money free agent like Muhammad Wilkerson or Olivier Vernon.

The last position they will look a t is linebacker. With Rolando McClain likely leaving Dallas in free agency the Cowboys could end up surprising most people and pick up Myles Jack or Jaylon Smith both of whom suffered season ending injuries. Both of those linebackers are once in a generation type of players but I don't know if you could value them ahead of a healthy Joey Bosa or Ezekiel Elliot. At the end of the day the Cowboys will go with what need will be the hardest to replace and will likely draft Bosa or Spence if they are still available.   

 

 

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