Mailbag: Secondary Help The Top Draft Priority? Pressure To Draft A QB In The 1st?

AUSTIN BEARDNORMAN, OK

Am I the only one that thinks the secondary should be the main focus in the first round? In your opinion, who would be the top prospects at DB?

Nick: I'm sure you aren't the only one who thinks that. If they stick to their board and the best player is a defense of back I don't think Cowboys would to dismiss it. Probably the fact that Morris Claiborne has not met expectations has deterred the fans and maybe the Cowboys from that route. Don't forget that free agency comes first and they have a decision to make with Brandon Carr. But in terms of the draft, Personally I would go another position I think but it's still early in the game. 

Rob: For what it's worth in late January, the defensive backs you're seeing in the top 5-to-10 in these early mocks are Jalen Ramsey and Vernon Hargreaves, both junior early entrants who aren't here in Mobile. But I keep saying this: It's risky to stare down one position of need with your first-round pick. Cornerback does look like a need when you factor in Morris Claiborne's expiring contract and the possibility of Byron Jones moving to safety full time. The Cowboys need to take the best player available based on their board, though, pretty much regardless of need. It's imperative they get the pick right at No. 4. Also, remember, what happens in free agency might determine what the roster's biggest needs are by late April.  

SHAUN RODVOLDCOLORADO SPRINGS, CO

Now that we know who is in the Super Bowl, will there be any added pressure for Dallas to draft a QB in Round 1 given that both QBs for Denver and Carolina were first-round picks?

Nick: Stephen Jones said Tuesday that they firmly believe Romo has at least 3 to 4 more seasons. So I don't think there is any pressure to get a first-round quarterback because other teams have done that. First-round success is not a new concept and yet the Cowboys have continued to stick with Romo. Now if the best player on their board is a quarterback I'm not saying they will dismiss it, but this team won't be backed into taking a quarterback high just because of recent success. 

Rob: I think I understand your point – the league's most successful quarterbacks, this year in particular, were former No. 1 overall picks. History does show most franchise quarterbacks are taken in Rounds 1 or 2, so if you're looking to groom a future starter behind Tony Romo, your chances are better drafting one in that area. If a quarterback is decidedly the best player on their board at No. 4, I don't think you can pass just because you expect Tony Romo to play a good while longer. But again, you can't force it. If there's a better player at another position, go that route. The real pressure arrives when you reach for a player in the draft and it doesn't work out.

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