What if the Dallas Cowboys knew CeeDee Lamb would fall to them?

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Amari Cooper, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

In a parallel universe where the Dallas Cowboys could see into the future, might they have signed Byron Jones instead of Amari Cooper?

A funny thought occurred to me this morning. It’s the headline of this piece, so it’s not a surprise. What if the Dallas Cowboys had known CeeDee Lamb would fall to them at pick 17 of April’s NFL draft?

The obvious question is: Would they have signed Amari Cooper to his $105 million dollar contract early in the offseason? A number of thoughts come together in a flurry:

  • Of course they would have! Who lets go of such a great receiver? That’s crazy!
  • Wait a minute. Maybe they would have let him go. If they’d had that extra $20 million, they could have signed Byron Jones, plus have some change left over.
  • This is ridiculous! There’s no way they could have known that!

If you chose answer C, you are the most correct. (Insert laughing smiley here.) Of course, there’s no way anyone could have known Lamb would fall that far. He was projected as going in the top ten, and as high as pick number six.

Even if someone had predicted this, it would have been crazy to just let Cooper go, because that’s when things don’t go your way. It’s a corollary of Murphy’s Law. When you need something to happen, you can be sure it won’t. Unless you own stock in a four-leaf clover factory, or some other such nonsense.

For those that follow the carnival of free agent signings, the excitement of the NFL draft, and especially the Cowboys offseason moves the last few years, you know how it works. Smart teams try to fill all their glaring roster holes before the draft, at least to the extent possible.

That way, they can really select the best player available. Besides which, had the Cowboys really let Cooper fly the Coop, they would have wasted a first-round pick trading for him from the then Oakland (now Las Vegas) Raiders a year and a half ago.

So, I’ll admit it. It’s a dumb question. Nevertheless, regardless of the silliness of this exercise, it’s still a fun thought experiment. Let’s say there was a parallel universe where Cowboys owner Jerry Jones could see into the future, and he knew with absolute certainty that CeeDee Lamb was going to fall to the Cowboys at pick 17. In that sci-fi world, what might America’s Team have decided to do?

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