Eatman: Draft Picks Not As Safe Anymore?

As soon as word came out the Cowboys were cutting ties with Andre Gurode, there seemed to be a trending word that kept surfacing:


Did Jason Garrett send a message by cutting Gurode. Or was it Jerry Jones and management sending a GM message that players with high contracts wouldn't stick around no matter what they've done in the past?

Either way, there seems to be some sort of message sent. In fact, all decisions have an attached message if look hard enough.

And Jason Garrett has said a couple of times in the last week that at some point the coaching staff and scouting department need to take the numbers off the players and just evaluate their play, and not the names and prestige that go with it.

I wonder if draft status is included in there. It should be.

Too many times, especially with this team, players have hung around way too long because they were simply drafted and teams don't like admitting mistakes right away.

So it makes me wonder if the Cowboys are fully committed to this process when it comes to their own picks.

If so, it'll be hard to justify keeping 2009 fourth-round pick Brandon Williams over a guy like Alex Albright, a rookie free agent from Boston College. Or what about last year's fourth-round pick Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, who like Williams, just hasn't produced anything.

This year, fifth-round pick Josh Thomas has been outplayed by rookie free agent Mario Butler and second-year pro Bryan McCann. The one argument this year is that without a real offseason, it's hard to gauge these rookies by one training camp. Therefore, some of these rookie picks this year could get the benefit of the doubt.

Still, if the Cowboys are really committing to keeping the best players around, then it shouldn't matter about draft status either.

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