Cowboys draft missteps: Should’ve, could’ve, would’ve but didn’t

Dallas Cowboys Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
Dallas Cowboys Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports /
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Dallas Cowboys
Dallas Cowboys defensive end Taco Charlton Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports /

T.J. Watt over Taco Charlton

Ok, this was a softball that everyone can knock out of the park. The 2017 Draft was famous because Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was looking for a “War Daddy” at the defensive end position.

I am a big proponent of location and scheme having a massive effect on a young player’s development and the reality is I have my doubts that Watt would have flourished in Dallas like he has in Pittsburgh. It is also my opinion that I don’t think Watt’s time would have been as bad as Charlton’s.

Entering the draft, defensive end Derek Barnett was my dream draft pick scenario but Takk McKinley or Charles Harris would have been good consolation prizes. Unfortunately, all those players were gone when the Cowboys went on the clock which led to a showdown the Dallas Cowboys haven’t fully recovered from.

With T.J Watt available, he should have been the choice but the Dallas Cowboys went with the more physically imposing defender in Taco Charlton. That turned out to be one of the biggest mistakes in a mistake-riddled 2017 NFL Draft.

Watt is the frontrunner for NFL defensive player of the year this year while Taco Charlton is on his third NFL team in four years. It is funny that Taco will likely get a Super Bowl ring this year as he started the year with Kansas City but is currently on injured reserve after fracturing his ankle in week nine.

Charlton, the player, was big and strong but immediately played out of position as Dallas coveted quick-twitch athletes on their defensive front. It is mind-blowing that they passed on their preference in Watt for Charlton’s prototypical size.

Watt starting opposite of DeMarcus Lawrence is something Cowboy fans can only dream of unless the Pittsburgh Steelers decide to dump salary.

Either way, the Dallas Cowboys should’ve but didn’t and it is now costing them more than they could have ever envisioned when they decided to send in the wrong draft card.