I keep hearing that from a value perspective and need perspective the Cowboys are not in an ideal spot in the draft. I would like to see them trade down and compile picks. Which team(s) do you think want to trade up into their position and who do you think would be available with their new first pick?
David: It's hard to say until we see what happens during the first 15 picks. If you're a Cowboys fan, you probably want to see some quarterbacks fall. If a top-notch quarterback falls, then you might see some teams take interest in trading. The top candidate for that would probably be the Browns, who have a second first-round pick at No. 26. But you may see someone at the top of the second round – Houston, Oakland, Tampa – take interest in a trade. That seems like an awfully high jump, though.
Rowan:Predicting trade-ups and trade-downs are nearly impossible until you see what players become available as the draft transpires. But I'm with you that a trade down, given their spot at 16, is the more likely direction if they're to make a move. I look at a team like Cleveland, which has a top-five pick and a pick at 26, as a candidate to move up from that 26 spot to 16 – particularly if the Browns don't take a quarterback with that first pick. The longer the top quarterbacks and other highly-touted skill position players are on the board, the likelier the chance the Cowboys have to find a trade-back partner. I look at Arizona (20) and [embedded_ad] Kansas City (23) as other possible landing spots. If the Cowboys get into that range, I think Kony Ealy, Timmy Jernigan, Zack Martin, Odell Beckham and any of the top available safeties could be among the many considerations.
How did the Cowboys get a killer schedule after a 8-8 season? We will be lucky to start 2 - 7!
David: It's funny to me that people place such an emphasis on strength of schedule before the season starts. For one thing, it's hard to accurately predict who is going to be good or who will struggle – ask the Chiefs and Ravens. Secondly, where you finish within the division only dictates two of your opponents for the next season – the other 14 games are locked in, regardless of whether you went 2-14 or 14-2. If the Cowboys had won the division, they'd be playing Carolina and Green Bay, instead of New Orleans and Chicago. That's literally the only difference.
Rowan: It does look pretty daunting, but take some solace in the fact that some teams will surprise you and others will be much more disappointing than anyone predicted. The schedule's just impossible to predict like that. No one thought last year's Kansas City team, the Cowboys' Week 2 opponent in 2013, would be one of the better teams in the league. Just like no one predicted the Redskins' demise last season. I think the bigger issue is not travelling to play on the road within the division until after the Week 11 bye. Typically, that's when teams are the most banged up, and the Cowboys know all too well about injuries.