Dec 31, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Texas A

Manziel Becoming A Cowboy in the 2014 Draft Makes ZERO Sense

I love interacting with the members of Cowboy Nation. Nothing ruins an intelligent discussion about the Cowboys like finding a member that believes the Cowboys will draft Jonathan Paul Manziel aka Johnny Football. It’s not going to happen. It doesn’t make sense here or in any alternate universe. The very mention of it makes me wonder if that person even watches Cowboys football. I don’t care if they have footage of Jerry Jones massaging Manziel’s feet as he eats lunch on campus. Let it go! (That mental image may have been a little creepy and for that I apologize.)

Let’s start with the simple fact that the Cowboys issues the past two seasons have been on the defensive side of the ball, primarily due to injuries. There’s also the nature of Romo’s contract that indicate he’ll be around for a while. His herniated disk surgery went fine, according to reports, and Romo’s expected to be prepared for organized team activities in May. Why would you darewaste a pick by drafting a project QB in the first round?

Players taken in upper rounds of the draft are expected to contribute immediately. It’s why there’s so much backlash regarding the Gavin Escobar selection in the second round last year. Had Escobar been drafted in a lower round or had numbers comparable to other rookie tight ends like Timothy Wright, Jordan Reed or Tyler Eifert, he wouldn’t have been labeled a bust this season.

2013 NFL Rookie Tight End Stats

Player Name, Team

Draft Position

Receptions / Yards / Touchdowns

Timothy Wright, Tampa Bay


54 / 571 / 5

Jordan Reed, Washington

3rd Round, 85th Overall

45 / 499 / 3

Tyler Eifert, Cincinnati

1st Round, 21st Overall

39 / 445 / 2

Mychal Rivera, Oakland

6th Round, 184th Overall

38 / 407 / 4

Zach Ertz, Philadelphia

2nd Round, 35th Overall

36 / 469 / 4

Gavin Escobar, Dallas

2nd Round, 47th Overall

9 / 134 / 2

This upcoming draft should be focused on defense, defense and defense. The focus of every defense is putting pressure on the opposing quarterback. 15 players in the NFL had 11 sacks or more and of those 15 players, there were: 5 linebackers, 9 defensive ends and 1 defensive tackle, the Cowboys Jason Hatcher. Carolina, New Orleans and Kansas City had two players represented on this short list of 15.

The amount of defensive ends on this list shows why that position takes priority over defensive tackles. That’s why I wouldn’t be excited about the Cowboys drafting Stephon Tuitt, Will Sutton, Louis Nix or Aaron Donald. They would be solid draft picks and contributors, but pressure comes off the edge and replacing the aging and oft-injured DeMarcus Ware is a priority.

I haven’t crunched all of the numbers or watched videos. I don’t study or follow the NCAA football season. I looked at the leading defensive ends from the list of NCAA 2013 Sack Leaders. That list was narrowed to those with physical measurements comparable to the NFL 2013 Sack Leaders. Perhaps it’s a short and shallow, non-scientific method, but that’s basically what they do at the NFL combine.

2013 NFL Sack Leaders (Defensive Ends)

Name / Year


Height / Weight


Robert Quinn / 3rd

St. Louis

6′ 4” / 264


Greg Hardy / 4th


6′ 4” / 290


Mario Williams / 8th


6′ 6” / 292


Cameron Jordan / 3rd

New Orleans

6′ 4” / 287


Chandler Jones / 2nd

New England

6′ 5” / 265


My short list of NCAA candidates begins with Jackson Jeffcoat (Texas, 6′ 5”, 245) or Marcus Smith (Louisville, 6′ 3”, 252). Smith led all defensive ends with 14.5 sacks and Jeffcoat finished 2013 with 13 sacks. There’s a reason the name Jeffcoat sounds familiar. His father Jim Jeffcoat played for and won two Super Bowls with the Cowboys.

For all the national sports media coverage following Jadeveon Clowney (South Carolina, 6′ 6”, 274), he finished the season with 3 sacks. It is also doubtful that Clowney reaches the Cowboys in the 2014 NFL draft.

The NCAA Sack Leader is Trent Murphy with 15 sacks, but he’s listed as a Stanford linebacker. While Murphy is 6′ 6″ and 261 pounds, I’m not a fan of teams drafting a player in the first round with the goal of  teaching him a new position.

As we get closer to the NFL combine, the picture will become clearer and collegiate players will stand out. The Cowboys first priority should be a pass rushing defensive end in the first and possibly second round. A top rated defensive tackle in the second round would be acceptable too. That would allow them to draft a safety in the third round and an offensive guard in the fourth. All positions where improvement is needed and could be found immediately in the draft.

I won’t say that Manziel would never become a Dallas Cowboy. Who could’ve imagined we’d ever have Ryan Leaf on our roster? Stranger things have happened, but he won’t be on our roster because we drafted him. It’s not even a pipe dream, it’s a pipe nightmare. So please, if you want to sound like an intelligent, knowledgeable member of Cowboy Nation – Don’t envision, support, or mention any possible scenario or reason why the Cowboys will draft Manziel in 2014.

Let it go.

#Go Cowboys

Next Cowboys Game View full schedule »
Sunday, Sep 77 Sep3:25San Francisco 49ersBuy Tickets
Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: Dallas Cowboys Johnny Football Johnny Manziel

  • n0ble

    I’ve been saying this in my blog too…drives me crazy!

    • Robert H. Carroll

      Noble, what’s your blog? If it’s about the Cowboys, I’ll read it.

  • Juanito Juanito

    people think is a stupid move? well jerry like that kind of stupid moves, so he will do it, or select TE in first down believen that romo is tom brady jajajajajaaja, funny GM

  • will hall

    QB is not a need for the boys, if they can draft 7 defensive players in this draft do it. When your offence puts up double digit leads in 3 maybe 4 games, and you still lose, aint nothing wrong with the offenece, except play calling. Yeah, our qb threw interceptions in a few games that cost us, but hell, the defence could not stop anybody, and he was forced to put the ball up. Had the big leads in San Diego, Detroit, GB, maybe Denver. If we won two of those games playoffs.

    • Robert H. Carroll

      I totally agree. I believe the Bears and Saints are the only teams that beat us. The Cowboys beat themselves against the Lions, Packers, Chargers and Broncos. Just running the ball to get first downs would’ve won those four games.

  • Chesney Blair

    I found it bit rude for you to marginalize other Cowboy fans here by being condescending about Manziel discussions.. I and other fans I am sure only put their opinions forward for the betterment of the team regarding drafting Manziel. If you don’t agree with it fine but there is no need to say it is not intelligent. The players you listed can be had after second round anyways so if it is possible to obtain Manziel either on their first round position or by giving up just a third to move up, i think seeing what an important position it is and the uncertainty of Romo’s play would be wise move. I don’t find the Leaf comparison relevant as Leaf was a much higher touted prospect and the new cba deal allows teams to draft quarterbacks high without the extremity of the financial pitfall.

    • SmartThinking

      You’re past due for your medication. Go. Now.

      • Chesney Blair

        stop following me from one thread to the other dumbthinking.

        • SmartThinking

          Quit writing stupid stuff and I won’t need to comment on your lack of football acumen.

          • Chesney Blair

            Quit being a dumbthinker, thinking you know something. So how many years have you been an armchair GM?

    • Robert H. Carroll

      Ryan Leaf was a bust. After being drafted by the Chargers, he had four wins in three years as a starter. There was never a moment where Cowboy fans chanted, “Ryan Leaf! Ryan Leaf!” or “We Need Ryan!” in the hallowed grounds of Texas Stadium. When the Chargers moved on, that should’ve been his last day in the NFL, just based on his stats. Should I have said, Chad Hutchinson?

      Long story short. If you draft a player in the top three rounds of the draft, they should contribute to the team immediately. Worst case scenario, we have a Brett Favre / Aaron Rodgers scenario in Dallas and Romo is unceremoniously ushered out of town after ESPN does 3 seasons of Romo Retirement Watch and there’s no way that happens either.

      • Chesney Blair

        Your comparison doesn’t make sense. I never said Ryan Leaf wasn’t a bust. Manziel is a different kind of prospect though. First of all, not lot of people are as high on Manziel as they were on Leaf around that time. Bledsoe and Leaf were sure picks(both tall strong arm prototype quarterbacks) to succeed with Manziel there are plenty of people doubting his size and his transition to the NFL so that is one. The reason we didn’t look for quarterbacks at the time was we already had a hall of fame quarterback two. Three I believe the Patriots picked up Mallet in the third round. Did he contribute right away? No. Considering Romo’s age it is not a stupid move to look for a quarterback to replace him.

        Secondly, why are you guys so high on Romo? Did he win the Super Bowl and I missed it or something? List me some important wins he had the last three years against quality opponents. What I don’t understand is how come we can’t even have a discussion to get a quarterback. What would happen if we draft Manziel and fail? You move onto the next quarterback and trade him to the Browns. Lose a 16 pick which is never a sure thing anyway.

        Thirdly, I think Manziel’s success will hinge on which team he falls to. I don’t think many players can make Browns or Jacksonville that much better. Where as if he has Dez and a decent team behind him, the chance of him succeeding is more likely.

        I wonder what you Manziel doubter would say if he does well on the NFL? ”Yeah we needed a dl at the time, so we passed on him”.

        • Old Frog

          I don’t know if Manziel will make it in the NFL or not but out of High School he spent spring training with TCU (my beloved Frogs) and Coach Patterson didn’t offer him a scholarship because he had Pachall (6’5″ pocket passer) at QB so Manziel went to A&M instead. Well Pachall self destructed, Manziel won the Heisman, and I suspect Patterson is still kicking himself for that error in judgement. You just never know. Who knew Tom Brady would be such a monster and Ryan Leaf would be such a flop. Even Joe Montana slipped to the end of the 3rd round while Matt Leinart never amounted to anything. Somebody will pick Manziel so we’ll see how that works out for them. Probably won’t be the Cowboys though.

  • Scott.

    I agree it makes little sense to draft Manziel, but we are talking about Jerry.

  • Old Frog

    Defense, Defense, Defense….except for the first round. Take Cyril Richardson and then Defense, Defense, Defense the rest of the way.

    • Robert H. Carroll

      Old Frog.. Your post made me look up Cyril Richardson. I think he’d be an awesome addition, but there’s one problem. Jason Garrett doesn’t like big, powerful, offensive linemen. Why?? I don’t know!! He lusts after smallish, agile offensive linemen like the Broncos used to have. They might be better at getting to spots to execute their zone blocking scheme. It’s a good thought though and both Romo and Murray would love it too.

      • Old Frog

        Operative phrase “like the Broncos used to have..” Times have changed. I’ve posted several times that the 49ers have four 1st round picks on their OL and I think that’s a huge reason for their success and I’m hoping McClay feels the same way about it when he starts managing the draft board. With the worst defense in history all we needed was another field goal in 5 games and we go 13 and 3. I think a premier guard between Smith and Frederick for Murray to run behind gets us those points. (I also fantasize about that little fireplug Mason from Auburn squirting through between those guys on a regular basis but that’s another story). We all expect this draft to improve the defense now but what if it takes another year? Go big (at OG) or go home.

        • Robert H. Carroll

          Or we could improve upon the worst defense with first round talent. Murray averaged more than five yards per carry. It’s not that we couldn’t run the ball, they just didn’t call enough running plays. How about a building a defense that can secure double digit fourth quarter leads? Then we won’t need to get a final late field goal to get wins.

  • Dale

    Gonna get my dead grandma to sign up to write these articles…….