Dallas has a great group of linebackers, headlined by two of the more notable young linebackers in the league. Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith have been great linebackers that can defend the run and the pass very well.
The problem is that some names are going to be missing games or even next season as a whole. Veteran linebacker Sean Lee requires a new contract, and even with him re-signed, injury questions will always be in the air.
This past season was the only year he played in all 16 games. He is not the only question due to injury, as LVE missed seven games this past season due to injuries. It was an eye-opener since it was a nerve issue in his neck.
With an injury that serious, there will always be thoughts of the injury reoccurring. The same can be said for Smith after his scary knee injury while playing for Notre Dame.
Drafting a linebacker would be good as far as reassurance that someone will be able to step in if there is an injury, especially a long-term injury. Having someone like Sean Lee being there to step in is a luxury that Dallas had this past season.
Grabbing a young linebacker I wouldn’t consider a need, but more of something to keep in mind. If there is a linebacker available that the Cowboys like, they should consider picking him up.
Investing anything more than a third-round pick would seem like too much unless they decide to let Lee walk. If he is not re-signed, then it would make more sense to invest a higher pick.