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Notes: Figuring Out The O-Line's Future; More


FRISCO, Texas – The Cowboys covered a lot of ground on Friday night.

As if the two draft picks weren't news enough, plenty of tidbits came out of their wrap-up press conference. Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones, chief operating officer Stephen Jones and coach Jason Garrett hit on plenty of topics.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Coming out of Day 2, it'd be an understatement to say the Cowboys were happy with their picks – but they know they still have work to do. Stephen Jones targeted safety, running back and cornerback as positions they'll be looking at on Saturday.
  • In talking about his new offensive linemen, Stephen Jones gave a heck of a vote of confidence to his starting center. Jones was asked Friday night if the selection of Connor McGovern had anything to do with the health of Travis Frederick – but Jones said not.
  • "I think he's ready – he'll go right to work in training camp," he said. "Barring a setback or something unforeseen, he should roll right back into being our starting center and, I think, play at the level he's always played at."
  • Frederick is working his way back from Guillain-Barré Syndrome, an illness he was diagnosed with during training camp last summer. If the three-time All-Pro can return to his previous level of play, it could be a huge boost for the Dallas offense.
  • If the McGovern pick isn't about Frederick, it raises questions about La'el Collins and Connor Williams. Collins is entering the final year of his contract and could be in line for a big pay day in free agency. Williams was an all-conference tackle in college – which raises questions about the future of the position. Jones said he think Williams could play right tackle, although he's not ready to write off the possibility of re-signing Collins.
  • "We feel like he can move out there. He's very athletic. He's got great feet and certainly can do that," he said of Williams. "At the same time, our goal is to keep as many of our guys as we can, and La'el has certainly played very well. He's a guy, certainly, we'll want to keep. We'll just have to see how it plays out."
  • Jerry Jones didn't mind telling reporters after the press conference that Virginia safety Juan Thornhill was the other player the Cowboys were coveting before the Trysten Hill pick. "He fit. We liked him. He really fit (our scheme)," Jones said. "We were ready to go with him. But we took our preference."
  • Thornhill was at The Star for the 30 visits and intrigued the Cowboys with his ability to play both cornerback and safety throughout his career. He eventually went off the board just five picks later to the Chiefs at No. 63.
  • For the fifth time in six years, the Cowboys have drafted a defensive lineman in the first three rounds of the draft. Hill, a second-round pick, continues the Cowboys' philosophy of adding depth at those spots. The Cowboys have picked DeMarcus Lawrence (2nd round, 2014), Randy Gregory (2nd round, 2015), Maliek Collins (3rd round, 2016), Taco Charlton (1st round, 2017) and now Hill this year. The only exception occurred in 2018, although they did take Dorance Armstrong early in the fourth round.
  • The Cowboys felt their work in free agency, covering most positions on the roster, would help them avoid drafting for need. A perfect example is third-round pick Connor McGovern. "He for us was by far the best player at that time," head coach Jason Garrett said. "More than anything else, it was us looking at each other and saying, 'Here's the blinking light.'"
  • How tough was it for Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones to wait 57 picks over two nights before the Cowboys finally got on the clock? "I don't recall picking this late in the rounds and not having a one," Jones said. "Certainly your inclination is you want to be doing everything you can to improve the team, so really all the more reason to play what's dealt you there."