Sticking To Your Board – Dallas Cowboys 2014 Draft
History is studied for many reasons, however one of the primary purposes is in order to not repeat mistakes of the past for history (humans) tend to repeat themselves. Another is to assist in predicting future behavior or results. The Dallas front office seems to be aware of these axioms as we have been able to view their boards and assess their commensurate actions.
It’s been well documented recently that when the Cowboys strayed from their board, mistakes were made. When they stick with their board we get drafts resulting in corps player additions who will be with the team for multiple contracts (Tyrone Crawford, Tyrone Smith, Travis Frederick, Terrance Williams). With this draft having 11 picks the Cowboys need to stick to their board and maximize the results.
We won’t know what the Cowboys 2014 board looks like until (unless) Jerry leaks it (again) post draft, however we do know that the Cowboys really, really, really like to draft guys they have brought into camp and had interviews or workouts with. The all important pre-draft invite list is the place to start in creating a board that the Cowboys may actually be looking at come draft day. There will be a few names on their board the Cowboys didn’t invite (of course) but the list of invitees represent identifiable players of interest for the scouting and coaching staff.
Using the above premise, I took the Cowboys pre-draft visit list (by our own Dan Turner) added players recently revealed to be heading to Valley Ranch, used our inside information supplied by TD in our pre-draft series Rafael presents every year to rank the players and did an online mock draft to see what happens if we draft using the players that make the Cowboys go “hmmmmmm”.
Dallas Cowboys 2014 Draft Invitee Mock
Dallas Cowboys 2014 Draft Invitee Mock Review
I did not look at draft depth or positional need, instead using a total BPA (best player available) approach. I was willing to make a one player drop if there was a position conflict and the talent was close. It didn’t happen other than in the first round where quite a few defensive linemen were available. I could have taken Hegamen or Jernigan at 16 as well has WR Mike Evans, ergo a trade down could very well occur in that type of situation. I stayed home and took the rated player. WR Mike Evans, who was snapped up by the Eagles, gave me pause.
Staying true to the board, the Cowboys did lock up two nice talent additions along the defensive line (Donald and Ealy) and followed up in the third by addressing the offensive line (Mewhort). Two rangy CB’s (Dixon & Goodson) give them options next year with Brandon Carr and Morris Claiborne, and fast, rangy outside WR (Mike Davis) to compliment their current slot guys backing up starters Dez and Williams. An OLB (Howard Jones) that should shine on special teams, a stud FB (Copeland) who should change the short yardage options, a QB (Gilbert) to develop and a DT (Hyder) and S (Southward) with nice upside. Follow this up with a thoughtful UDFA haul and the Cowboys would be looking at another solid draft.
As a quick aside, I have completed quite a few mocks using various boards and list. No matter how cute you want to get looking at positional depth and/or need, if top line talent is available in the first, don’t over think it. Take the talent. Work your list. A top ten talent may very well drop and change the Cowboys thinking in round one. I hope not. Using rounds one, two and three in the trenches works for me.
We will be discussing this further live tonight, 9 PM CST on CowboysNation Writers Roundtable. Click here to listen live or wait and we will post the podcast here after the show.
What say you Cowboys Nation?
Another Left Coast Cowboys Post: on Twitter – Steven Van Over