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Mailbag: How Many Bases Covered Before The Draft?

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By adding new defensive linemen and safeties in the first two weeks of free agency, does that let the Cowboys have more range to draft top available players instead of need? — STEPHEN GRAYSON / GREENVILLE, MS

Nick: I would guess that's always been the case. I'm positive that Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones, Will McClay and Mike McCarthy will tell you that taking the best player is always the goal, over any need. But we all know that sometimes, the need is so great that you just make sure he's the "best" player available. Personally, I've always thought it should be "best available need" anyway. Forget about the best player if he's a quarterback. You've got one and you're paying him rather well. So give me the best position of need. I don't think anyone they have signed in free agency would stop them from drafting a player at that position.

Jonny: I think it gives them flexibility to do that in the first round. I would still probably target positions in the second and third rounds if there's relative talent available at that position. Trevon Diggs was likely the product of knowing they wanted to come away with a defensive back in the second round and it worked out great.

How does Caleb Farley's back surgery impact his potential draft status with Dallas? If Patrick Surtain is not available when Dallas is on the clock, and Farley and Jaycee Horn both are, who in your opinion would be the best fit? — RANDY SNYDER / NEWALLA, OK

Nick: First of all, it was about a month ago when I asked one of our "Draft Show" experts if Horn isn't actually better than Farley and Surtain. They told me no, but I seem to think he's got really good skills. But in terms of the injury to Farley, I think it's very impactful, and maybe not just for the Cowboys. Think about a team in the middle of the first round that is hoping a cornerback falls to them. Now, with one of them likely not going to be picked at 10, it might change things. I wouldn't be surprised to see that team look to trade up ahead of the Cowboys to land Surtain or maybe Horn. But to answer your question, I think Horn is the one I'm taking if Surtain isn't there. I might even consider if he is.

Jonny: I stand by my belief that they should draft Rashawn Slater at 10 if available. If you want top offensive tackles for the future you need to draft them when you have a top 10 pick and I don't think they plan on having a top 10 pick again anytime soon. This offense could be a juggernaut but that all gets jeopardized if they are too thin on the offensive line.

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