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Mailbag: Will needs outweigh best available?


The Cowboys have historically done a good enough job in free agency that they could draft the best player available. Obviously, this year is different. Will the team's needs this time outweigh the opportunity to draft the best available player? – Jeremy Kincheloe/Virginia Beach, VA

Nick Eatman: I think that's probably the most important question of this draft. We always hear about "Best Player Available" but I think it has to come down to "Best Available Need" this year. But here's the good news, or is it the bad news? Either way, the Cowboys seemingly have a lot of needs. It's hard to think that a player will fall to them at No. 24 that isn't a need one way or another. We think left tackle, center, running back, defensive tackle and maybe linebacker are the biggest needs. But we can't really dismiss cornerback or wide receiver and maybe guard, if they move Tyler Smith out to tackle. So this team has plenty of needs. If they go ahead and just pick the best player on their board, it will most likely be somebody that can help right away. At least that's the plan. So I think needs will win out this year, but since there are plenty of needs, it's not a bad thing.

Patrik: This is the reason I wanted to see them more active in free agency. Having only acquired one talent from the outside (Eric Kendricks) in the midst of hemorrhaging talent to other teams, the Cowboys are in the unenviable position of having not one, but several pressing needs heading into the 2024 NFL Draft. That makes it so much more difficult to simply focus on grabbing BPA (Best Player Available) at each pick, and especially when they have only seven picks to begin with. They're going to need to do all they can to acquire more picks (e.g., trade back), to give them more freedom to grab a BPA or two while also ultimately addressing as many of their needs as possible. This is where it becomes crystal clear that, while the Cowboys routinely draft well more often than not, getting back to the Super Bowl has to be a multi-faceted offseason approach that includes savvy in free agency anddominance in drafts.

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