3 best case scenarios for Cowboys in first round of NFL Draft

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The Dallas Cowboys will have seven picks in the upcoming NFL Draft, one in every round. Their first-round selection will come 26th overall and there are many different directions they can go.

After trading for Stephon Gilmore and Brandin Cooks this offseason, the Cowboys lost two fifth-round picks in the 2023 NFL Draft. But by acquiring these two veterans for late-round picks, Dallas filled a need on both sides of the ball.

Then, by re-signing players like Leighton Vander Esch, Donovan Wilson, Tony Pollard, and Johnathan Hankins, the Cowboys did a nice job filling out their roster before the draft. That makes their first-round selection a huge wild card.

In years past, the Cowboys had specific needs heading into the draft.

They drafted six straight defensive players to begin the 2021 NFL Draft because their defense in 2020 was one of the worst in the NFL. Last year, Dallas needed offensive linemen help after releasing La'el Collins and letting go of Connor Williams in free agency. So, they drafted Tyler Smith with their first-round selection.

This year, there isn't a glaring team need when the Cowboys first select at 26. They could use extra offensive linemen -- just in case Tyron Smith gets hurt again. They could use a tight end because Dalton Schultz left in free agency. They could use another receiver to help Dak Prescott in the passing game.

But the Cowboys already have a full starting lineup, even before the NFL Draft begins. That's a good spot to be in and could make the team take the best available player on their board.

3 best case scenarios for Cowboys in first round of NFL Draft

3. Bijan Robinson falls to pick No. 26

The Cowboys have drafted a running back in the first round twice over the past 15 years: Ezekiel Elliott fourth overall in 2016 and Felix Jones 22nd overall in 2008.

With the Elliott era officially over in Dallas, the Cowboys can look to replace the veteran with the best running back in this class in Bijan Robinson. Robinson has the speed, agility, and power to be one of the top backs in the league for a long time.

But where he will go remains a mystery. Some experts have the Cowboys taking Robinson 26th overall, while others have the Texas running back going as high as eighth overall to the Falcons. The Eagles at 10 is also a strong possibility.

Either way, if Robinson falls to the Cowboys at 26, Jerry Jones must think long and hard about taking him there. In his senior season, he ran for 1,580 yards and 18 touchdowns.

Drafting Robinson would give the Cowboys a one-two punch that many teams would have a hard time stopping. With Pollard on the franchise tag and Ronald Jones on a one-year deal, Dallas doesn't have a running back locked down for the future.

That's where drafting Robinson would fill that long-term need on a cheap contract. The 21-year-old back has also been working out with Micah Parsons. 

Even though running backs have short careers and shouldn't be taken in the first round, Robinson would give the Cowboys' offense much more firepower for a deep playoff run.