Dallas Cowboys land CeeDee Lamb, defense, enjoy productive draft

Wide receiver CeeDee Lamb #2 (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Wide receiver CeeDee Lamb #2 (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /

The Dallas Cowboys needed defense, but when wide receiver CeeDee Lamb fell  to them in the first round of the NFL draft, it was a no-brainer.

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect once the opening round of the NFL draft commenced. The consensus, obviously, was that the Dallas Cowboys needed help on the defensive side of the ball. You’d be hard-pressed to argue, given the fact that the unit has consistently fallen short when it comes to creating sacks and turnovers.

We can debate about how many empty yards and points the Cowboys gained and scored last year, but the fact remains that they were the top offense in the entire NFL, in terms of yards gained. Keep in mind that former head coach Jason Garrett was prominently involved as well. Empty stats or no, the yards came against NFL defenses.

So when the dominoes started to fall on Thursday night, and it became apparent that Oklahoma wideout CeeDee Lamb was about to fall into the Cowboys’ laps, there really wasn’t a choice as to who they were going to pick. And sure enough, even as I was secretly hoping to hear the name of LSU edge rusher K’Lavon Chaisson, I couldn’t help but shrug my shoulders and easily accept the pick when Lamb’s name was called.

The Cowboys had Lamb ranked sixth on their board. Of course, one can always question who drew up the list, but if the sixth-ranked player on your draft board is there for the taking, you don’t hesitate. As cynical as I am about the Cowboys in this space, I had no qualm with the choice. Did it improve the team? Absolutely. Further, when you envision a receiver troika of Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and Lamb, it only makes the fan base giddy about the possibilities.

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Also, it’s not like Dallas didn’t eventually address the need for defensive help. In fact, they took five defensive players after selecting Lamb. Most notably, the second round selection of cornerback Trevon Diggs from Alabama, third round defensive tackle Neville Gallimore from Oklahoma, and fourth round cornerback Reggie Robinson from Tulsa. If you read Pro Football Focus’s draft analysis, they handed the Cowboys one of only four A+ grades along with Denver, Arizona, and Cleveland. Moreover, PFF’s Mike Renner gushed that the Cowboys were “ripping the doorknob off this draft. Every pick they’ve made was much higher on the @PFF draft board”. That’s some pretty high praise.

Circling back around to Lamb, his acquisition was just a matter of the right thing happening at the right time. Credit the Cowboys’ front office for not getting cute with the selection. I’ve seen him play a lot. The kid is electric after the reception. He will adjust to the catch in traffic. He will fight and high point the ball. He’s a superior route runner. You have to think that he will wreak havoc in the new Mike McCarthy offense in Dallas.

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Of course, there’s the matter of putting it all together and getting it done on the field. That remains to be seen. But if a player of Lamb’s caliber is added to this already high-flying mix, then it’s only natural to anticipate something big from this offense for years to come. I wasn’t ready to admit this, but once football comes around again, I’m incredibly antsy to see what this team can achieve.

  • Published on 04/27/2020 at 11:01 AM
  • Last updated at 04/27/2020 at 07:02 AM