Where recent Cowboys drafts have shown strength

Will McClay has clearly done a great job scouting players for the Jones boys to select. Give Jerry some credit for hiring McClay and keeping him around because before he came along our drafts were a crapshoot at best.

We have to hope this year’s draft will produce some immediate help. It usually takes at least 2-3 years to have an informed opinion about a draft class, so lots of time to go before we know.

The Cowboys have gotten better at drafting the last few years. Here’s some tidbits that show this:

  • All 35 draft picks made since the 2018 draft as of now are still in the NFL.
  • The top 5 picks of the 2018 draft have all played 50 or more games in their careers.
  • The first 5 players selected in last year’s draft played in 13 or more games in 2021.
  • In the McClay era, there have been fewer busts in the early rounds. The more recent busts here were Taco, Jaylon Smith, maybe Trysten Hill (too early yet to know)

One way to know how good a drafted player is how many NFL games they have played.

  • One late round player from all the way back to 2007 is still playing- Nick Folk, the K we took in round 6 of the 2007 draft is still playing.
  • Here are the Cowboys draft picks of the 21st century who have the most NFL games played- some may surprise you- here are those players and the HC who influenced the pick-
    • Jason Witten, TE round 3, 2003 draft- (a Parcells draft pick) played 271 games- not surprising
    • Terrance Newman, CB, round 1 of 2004 draft (Parcells pick) played 221 games
    • Nick Folk, K, round 6 of 2007 draft, (Phillips pick) played 194 games and counting
    • Anthony Fasano- TE, round 2 of 2006 draft (Parcells pick) played 180 games
    • DeMarcus Ware, DE/LB, round 1 of 2005 draft, (Parcells pick) played 174 games
    • Tyron Smith, T, round 1 of 2011 draft (Garrett Pick) played 144 games so far.

We have a pretty good overall draft history in the last 20+ years. The problem has been what kind of coaching, development and culture are these players brought into?

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