Which round should the Dallas Cowboys draft a running back?

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 28: Ezekiel Elliott of Ohio State reacts after being picked
CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 28: Ezekiel Elliott of Ohio State reacts after being picked /

With Ezekiel Elliott and Rod Smith on the depth chart, when should the Dallas Cowboys consider taking a running back in the 2018 NFL Draft?

The Dallas Cowboys have many team needs heading into the 2018 NFL Draft. Chief among them appear to be wide receiver, defensive tackle and offensive line. But it could be argued Dallas also has needs at tight end, linebacker, and safety. The Cowboys certainly suffered from a lack of quality depth in 2017.

But one area where the Cowboys appear to be fairly secure is at running back. With Ezekiel Elliott and Rod Smith firmly entrenched on the depth chart, plus young, unproven back Trey Williams and don’t discount the possible return of Alfred Morris, who is a free agent; there appears to be plenty of more pressing needs in Dallas than the offensive backfield.

That doesn’t mean the Cowboys shouldn’t draft a running back in 2018. I think they likely will. Especially considering last season’s rookie sensations in Kansas City Chiefs’ Kareem Hunt and New Orleans’ Alvin Kamara were both found in the third round of the 2017 draft.

The question is, how high are the Cowboys willing to draft a running back? Outside of Penn State’s Saquon Barkley, it doesn’t appear any prospect in this draft class would be worth catching at 19th overall. And I’m not sure Dallas would pull the trigger on him anyway. Investing two first round picks in running backs simply isn’t in their nature.

In the second round, there are several names that makes sense … for other NFL teams. Prospects like Georgia’s Sony Michel, LSU’s Derrius Guice and USC’s Ronald Jones II. Again, I think it just seems too high for Dallas.

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But when things start getting interesting for the Dallas Cowboys is in the third round. Depending on how many compensatory selections Dallas is granted in March by the NFL, the Cowboys could have several extra picks to use and possibly trade. I think starting in the third round, Dallas would be open to the idea of drafting another running back.