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Mailbag: Does Player Need Or Grade Matter More In Draft?

Posted Mar 1, 2013

JACK JACKSON
TYLER, TX

Wasn't the priority last year on drafting "pure?" Sure they need O-line and D-line but whether it is a tackle, guard, center, D-tackle or end, shouldn't they draft the best guy available no matter the position?

Nick: That’s exactly what you’ll hear Stephen Jones, Jerry Jones and Jason Garrett say when asked about it. They’ll say best-available player. And that holds true this year because there are about 7-8 positions that they really need. So if the best guy is at No. 18 and fills one of those spots, it makes sense. Personally, I think taking an offensive linemen would be a  good move, but you don’t want to reach. Again, it’s early to talk about the draft because of defense. We still don’t know about Spencer’s status, which affects Hatcher, which affects Ratliff.
 
Rowan: The priority every year is technically to take the best guy available. In this circumstance, though, I just value a young, talented offensive lineman that can help the run game. The Cowboys may not go that route, but it’s an option they’ll consider. I think it’ll probably be the best guy available between an offensive lineman, defensive lineman and safety. There seems to be a lot of depth in this draft but not a ton of clear-cut top 15 picks. A lineman who many grade as the 10th or 11th pick could end up going 20th or 21st.
 
 
PETER PASKEWICZ
CAPE CORAL, FL

Thank you Cowboy veterans, but now what? Does grabbing Spencer alone make sense or a handful of contributing free agents make more sense?

Nick: There’s a good chance neither of those scenarios occur. Those veterans that altered their contracts and helped the Cowboys get under the cap, but don’t expect any big-time moves. If Spencer is franchised, there is no guarantee he stays with the Cowboys. As for free agents, there could be one or two signed but no big splashes. They did that last year. You just can’t do that every season.

Rowan: I’d wait to see what happens with the Romo deal before commenting on this. I still think Spencer’s asking price will be slightly more than the Cowboys are willing to pay up. If they can’t get Spencer, I’d expect the Cowboys to bring in a free agent defensive or offensive lineman they can afford before heading to the draft with a better idea of what’s needed. Right now though, I’d say Spencer’s the priority free agent.

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