Arguing for, um, Jerry Jones

Jimmy Kempski:

They’re a team with no shortage of star power (or at least perceived star power) at the top: Ware, Romo, Witten, Austin, Ratliff, Smith, Lee and if you want to throw in Bryant and Carr too, then OK, I suppose I’ll allow it.

Beyond the stars, there’s mediocrity up and down the starting lineup and typically no depth to speak of whatsoever. This has not been a winning formula, and probably never will be.

The Cowboys’ decision to trade up and utilize their top 2 picks on one player (albeit potentially a great one), especially at a position that didn’t need as much help as other areas, reflects that same pattern.

Jimmy’s point about the Cowboys is well taken, and I can’t find fault with his encyclopedic knowledge of Dallas’s woes up and down their lineup. Still, I actually think trading up for Morris Claiborne is a justifiable, and in fact, possibly great move for Jerry Jones.

My main disagreement is that the Cowboys’ greater need at multiple positions shouldn’t disqualify them from grabbing a player at the top of their draft board. I like the Eagles decision to move up for Fletcher Cox, but they undoubtedly have positions in worse straits as well (e.g. safety and linebacker). Drafting a player that you feel strongly can become a Pro Bowler should come ahead of almost all considerations of need. Sure, more picks are better, but taking one of the consensus top six players in the draft this year probably balances out whomever you could have gotten at pick 45.

Building a roster is a long term game. You can’t solve (or ignore) all your problems in one draft or offseason. Dallas may fail at that in the long term, but in itself, picking Claiborne isn’t a poor decision.