Cowboys Draft History: Ten Worst Moves by Jerry Jones

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June 11, 2013; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones talks during a press conference after minicamp at Dallas Cowboys Headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

We are now less than three weeks away from the NFL draft.  Few events during the NFL season generate more hype, hope and excitement than the draft.  Cowboys fans and those within the organization must rely on this hope as the free agent period was clearly tough this year.  Dallas lost the face of their defense and one of the most decorated players in team history, allowing DeMarcus Ware to move on and chase title aspirations with the Denver Broncos.  The players that the Cowboys added certainly won’t do much towards moving the needle and will largely be counted on to provide depth.

So with this particular draft being one that can be easily looked upon as instrumental in shaping the future, what better time than now to review some of the Cowboys previous drafts.  Over the next week, I will highlight the history of the draft under the thumb of Jerry Jones and review the ten worst and best picks of this era.  Next Sunday, we’ll have a special anniversary piece that you won’t want to miss (especially if you’re a masochist).

Today we will examine the worst draft picks made by Jerry the Wonder GM.  For the sake of clarity, I feel like a few caveats should be mentioned.  Any picks made between 1989-1993 and 2003-2006 will not be mentioned because those were made by two legends in both coaching and talent evaluation.  Jerry gets credit for acquiescing to a more knowledgeable source, but he doesn’t get credit for making the pick (Aikman, Smith, Ware, Witten) or messing up (in the case of Bobby Carpenter).  Also, not only will the individual player be evaluated but the round the player was chosen and who was passed up will factor in as well.  So first round picks that hit or miss matter more than fifth rounders.  Similarly, a decent mid to late round pick will be devalued if a far better player was passed by.  Lastly, if the Cowboys made some sort of trade and did not make a pick they should have, that is going to count too.

So, let’s get started with the today’s review of the ten worst draft moves made by GM Jerry Jones.

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Tags: Dallas Cowboys DeMarcus Ware Emmitt Smith Jerry Jones Michael Irvin Troy Aikman

  • BradAustin

    How about we take out Coakley and put in Stephen McGee? McGee had lost his job as a starter for the Aggies early in his Senior season leading up the draft. Replaced by Jerrod Johnson, who was far from a stellar QB. Not to mention, McGee was NEVER known for having solid throwing ability when he did play. Was more of a mid-range thrower with scrambling and running option ability.

    But Jerry “genius” Jones just thought he saw something wonderful in the guy who wasn’t even good enough to start for a really bad (4-8) Aggie team. Spending Pick 101 on basically a throw away pick. No other team was anywhere near wanting that guy before 6th or 7th round, or maybe not even draft worthy.

    McGee warmed our 3rd QB spot for several years (2009-2011), never even threatening to take over as main back-up. However he prevented us from ever taking another change in mid to late rounds on a QB to groom. And we are paying for that today by spending decent coin on Orton, when we could have already groomed a guy for that back-up spot. Was a bonehead pick. The guy was average in college and never had the throwing skills for the NFL. There was no logical justification for that pick.

    **** Leaving Quincy Carter out of this topic is a sin as a Cowboys fan. Carter was awful in college and worse in NFL. But JJ wanted him to be the Cowboys STARTER and burned a 2nd way ahead of his known draft value. Back then JJ thought the higher he selected his sleeper, the better he would look if he became a really good player. They never did and his disappointing our fan base with idiotic moves destroyed all his credit as a GM to the football world. Thank God he’s scaled that garbage back some.

    And thank your lucky stars Carter got in trouble with the white powder one off-season, as Romo was 4th on the depth chart and just about to be cut when they trimmed to 3. Carter got in supposed drug trouble, and Cowboys cut him instead of Romo. If that never happened, we’d likely still be playing musical chairs with halfwit QB’s picked by JJ. Everytime someone bashes Romo just mention the name Quincy Carter, if a real Cowboys fan, he will refrain from more bashing. lol

    • Mekkio wekkio

      Romo is Romo and Carter is Carter. Both guys to be honest should not be playing on this team. Carter is the known drugie and Romo should have never crack the roster if we had quality qb depth. But that show exactly how bad our depth chart was.

      • Alex

        Looking at Romo’s stats, I’m not sure he’s that bad. I’m not really a Cowboys fan, and I’ve heard of people hating Romo … but statistically, I don’t see what the problem is. 31 touchdowns, 10 pick is pretty good. He’s throwing 2.7% interceptions, compared to Aikman’s career 3.0%…. STATISTICALLY, he’s better than Aikman — any given year. Maybe he messes up big games? I don’t really know, because I don’t watch Dallas games — but I do know stats. Soo, what’s the problem with Romo? Doesn’t win enough for ya? Blame Jerry Jones for that one…

        • Mekkio wekkio

          How dare you comparRomo to Aikman? That’s blasphemy! !!! Those two guys lived in two different eras o football so to compare them statistically can not be done. I have watch both players play, Aikman is far better than Romo, the thing was Aikman team was a ground team while Romo squad is an aerial assualt team. And yes Romo has had his moments when we needed him to make it happen. One drive for a td to take us to the playoffs with 1 or 2 mins left on the clock, in essence similar to Brady…and the guy fails. Heck this team can not get 9 wins with a so call stat Qb. Do you want to know why? Because he plays for himself and stats. He know how to pad them to Witten, I can count thousands of plays where he can miss a wide open. Bryant to hit Witten for the TD or to give him the drop off. The guy overall game is not impressive and Cowboys fan are finally realizing this. Stats are good but can always be skewed, I don’t know a lot about stats but I did take a college level statistical course and work a job that is stat base.

  • Mekkio wekkio

    Although most of this post I would of could of type deal you hit it right on the money with Brees and Moss, those selections could have change this team future. The Galloway and Roy trades set the team back while they could have easily waited for the draft. JJ jas no clue in regards to value of picks. Football is not a big tipper or blown money fast type sport has JJ attempts to betray. But you cant except the cowboys to hit all the time but you do expect them to not to waste their resources and pass on known good talent.
    Also im surprise you left out the spears being drafted over Aaron Rodgers, but that was a parcells move.

  • Guy Smith

    There are Alot worse moves than these, that Tight end from Notre Dame who’s name escapes me, Ekuban, Felix Jones Mike Jenkins, this article is poorly written.

  • Daniel Tamez

    Wow jones has really had that Midas touch hasn’t he? He’s one rich, do as he darn well pleases, pathetic, egotistical old fart. Love my Cowboys til death despite Al Davis….er I mean Jerrah Jones.

  • Alex

    Great article and a good read. But linking to pro-football-reference is not as simple as just linking to the player name. I caught that, at least twice, the improper page was linked (Ricky williams and Jimmy Johnson)…. I’m just saying… if you’re going to be linking to PFR, do it right… thanks…

    • LandryHat

      The link errors aren’t the writer’s fault. We use PFR’s Automatic Player Linker that scans the article’s HTML for key words and adds in the links automatically. So the flaws are actually in the software itself, and not the authors. The two links you mentioned have been removed.