We looked through all seven rounds and found 10 players the Cowboys didn’t draft who they could regret passing on down the road.
1.) Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State. Many thought Ramsey was going to be the Cowboys’ pick when they were on the clock at No. 4. But they picked Ezekiel Elliott and Ramsey went fifth to Jacksonville. Though Ramsey suffered a torn meniscus during offseason conditioning, he’s expected back by training camp. The Cowboys needed defensive help and there will be a lot of second-guessing if Ramsey becomes a star and Elliott does not.
2.) Paxton Lynch, QB, Memphis. Jerry Jones made it very clear that the Cowboys were interested in trading up into the end of the first round to draft Lynch. Denver had the same idea and made a better offer. Lynch went 26th overall when Seattle traded the pick to the Broncos. Did the Cowboys miss out on a future franchise QB? Can Dak Prescott become that player for Dallas?
3.) Myles Jack, LB, UCLA. The Cowboys used the 34th overall pick on an elite linebacker with questions about his surgically-repaired knee. Jack, another elite LB coming off a knee surgery, went two picks later to Jacksonville. Jaylon Smith and Jack will be linked to each other for a long time.
4.) Noah Spence, DE, Eastern Kentucky.Spence would have been another possible option at 34 if the Cowboys had not picked Smith. Dallas needed a defensive end more than any other position and Spence was the best remaining one on the board. He has character concerns off the field, so it’s understandable why the Cowboys passed. But there could be some regrets if he stays out of trouble and has a long and productive career.
5.) Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State. The Cowboys didn’t go after Cook quite as hard as Lynch, but they wanted the MSU standout. Oakland traded up one spot ahead of the Cowboys and drafted Cook in the fourth. Instead of trying to present a better offer than Oakland’s, the Cowboys selected Oklahoma DE Charles Tapper.
6.) Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor. Dallas doesn’t put a very high value on one-technique defensive tackles, but Billings could’ve been had in the fourth round. That’s pretty good value for a player who some thought would go at the end of Round 1.
7.) Cardale Jones, QB, Ohio State. Jones worked out for the Cowboys coaches when they came up to Ohio State before the draft. They were obviously looking for a QB in this class. Jones was drafted four picks after the Cowboys took QB Dak Prescott in the fourth.
8.) Ronald Blair, DE, Appalachian State.Dallas drafted Tapper in the third so they were apparently set at the position. However, you can never have enough quality pass rushers and Blair was still there late in the fourth round.
9.) Jalen Mills, S, LSU. The Cowboys didn’t have a seventh round pick but they could’ve drafted Mills with one of their four sixth round selections. Mills was projected by some to be a third or fourth round pick. Great value for late in the sixth.
10.) Tyler Matakevich, LB, Temple. Here’s another seventh round pick who could’ve been an option late in the sixth. Matakevich was coached by the Cowboys at the Senior Bowl. Although he’s undersized and not the most athletic MLB, Matakevich was ridiculously productive in college and could end up being a special teams leader who adds quality depth.
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