Dallas Cowboys: What it could cost to draft Tua Tagovailoa

Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa made some waves when he mentioned wanting to play for the Dallas Cowboys. What would it cost them to draft him?

Every prospect dreams of playing for their favorite team. And for many NFL hopefuls, that ideal landing spot is with the Dallas Cowboys. Unfortunately, that dream often goes unfulfilled.

Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa will likely fall into that category. He’d probably be the number one prospect off the board in the upcoming NFL draft if not for a hip injury he sustained last November. Still, many analysts have him slated to go in the top five.

Tagovailoa’s talent is so immense at a position of such desperate need across the NFL that even a laundry list of past injuries will not deter his selection that high in the first round. That speaks volumes about how high a ceiling many believe this young man has.

So where do the Cowboys fit into this picture? Tagovailoa was recently asked which NFL team he’d most like to be drafted by. His answer was his favorite team … America’s Team. Here’s what Tua told NFL Network’s Total Access recently …

“If you’re saying to me, if I can choose what team I want to play on, as far as my favorite team growing up, then I probably tell you the Cowboys. But their so far down (laughs) … I’m not trying to bump [Dak Prescott]. I’ll learn under him.”

If you are the Cowboys, the idea of drafting someone like Tagovailoa is likely the furthest thing from your mind. That’s despite the fact the team is coming off a disappointing 8-8 record, you just hired a new head coach who has helped develop some of the top passers in league history, and that your franchise quarterback is slated to become an unrestricted free agent next month.

All those factors would seem to indicate that the Cowboys are actually in an ideal position to draft a quarterback. But Dallas is in win-now mode. And they believe that with Dak Prescott under center, this team can make a deep playoff run. Why would you jeopardize that by bringing in a rookie first-round quarterback?

Even if Tagovailoa was redshirted his first season in Dallas to help him fully recover from his hip injury, having him sit behind Prescott would be a source of constant distraction. And many would be calling for Dak’s head on a weekly basis.

But according to Tony Pauline of the Pro Football Network, an unnamed source close to the team allegedly claims Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones wants to make a big splash in the upcoming draft. Pauline speculates that means trading up in the first round. Trading for Tua would not only constitute a big splash but a tsunami.

The Cowboys currently own the 17th overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft. If they wanted to trade up for Tagovailoa, what might that cost them? Dallas would likely have to make a deal with the Detroit Lions who own the third overall selection, which means moving up a costly 14 spots.

According to the 2020 NFL Trade Value Chart via drafttek.com, the Cowboys 17th overall pick is worth 950 points. The Lions No. 3 selection is worth a whopping 2,200 points. That”s a difference of 1,250 points.

In this scenario, the Cowboys would have to trade their 17th overall pick, their first-rounder from 2021 (estimate 950 points or less) and potentially their 2020 third-rounder (No. 82 – 180 points) to the Motor City just to get in the ballpark. As Detroit would have all the leverage and several suitors, they’d likely hold up Dallas for much, much more.

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Due to the recent regime change in Big D and the fact Dak Prescott is still not under contract for the 2020 season, the Dallas Cowboys drafting a first-round quarterback might seem ideal. But the fact is the price of making such a move to obtain someone like Tua Tagovailoa would be far too costly.