In arguably the most shocking move of the NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys drafted CeeDee Lamb, their top rated WR in the draft, and one of PFF’s all-time greats
Right when Cowboys Nation was resigned to the fact the Dallas Cowboys were going to draft K’Lavon Chaisson, the top receiver in the draft falls into their laps and offers them the gift of the 40-burger offense (40 point per game offense).
CeeDee Lamb, someone Pro Football Focus calls “the most advanced WR prospect since we started grading…” was never supposed to be in play. Commonly rated as the top WR in the draft, Lamb was supposed to go in the top-10 of the draft. He was such a long-shot, he didn’t even appear on the Dallas Cowboys’ interview list. it’s safe to say the Dallas Cowboys were just as surprised as Cowboys Nation to see Lamb sitting there at 17.
CeeDee Lamb Fills a Dallas Cowboys Need
Some will question the idea of the Dallas Cowboys picking a receiver with their top pick, and with so many needs on the defense, that sentiment is understandable. But for as strong as the Cowboys are at the top of their WR depth chart, they were shallow.
The exodus of Randall Cobb left an enormous void on the offense. He was one of the most explosive WRs in the league down the stretch and chances are a third round WR and/or Cedrick Wilson was never going to approach replacement level in the slot.
Cowboys fans also know how much the Cowboys offense declined without a healthy Amari Cooper on hand. While Cooper was hurt (Weeks 10-17), he failed to record a single 100-yard game and the offense cratered behind him. Dallas went just 3-4 down the stretch and logged point totals of just 9, 15, and 9. The fragility of the offense was apparent.
CeeDee Lamb fits at any of the three WR positions but immediately slides into the slot in Year 1 were he can exploit defenses with his duel release and downfield ability. Passer rating when targeting CeeDee was a staggering 145.8!
More PFF stats? Lamb isn’t just the traditional underneath guy teams typically employ in the slot. His 3.99 yards per route were 5th among all collage receivers last season and his 17 40+ yard receptions last season were the most in college. He’s the only player in the draft with both 60+ targets and 20+ yards per reception.
Still Time for Defense
We ran a simulation like this last week. In it, we picked Jerry Jeudy with the top pick and still found a way to load the defense: Dallas Cowboys draft WR in 1st, build their 40-burger offense
In coming days, weeks, months, and years we’ll break down how CeeDee Lamb changes this offense, but for now, rejoice the Dallas Cowboys just scored what is largely viewed as the steal of the first round.
Stay with us at Sport DFW as the draft unfolds. This promises to be an action-packed weekend!