Cowboys 7-round 2024 mock draft: Filling holes and spreading the wealth

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The Dallas Cowboys haven’t had much luck upgrading the roster since the season ended. Taking their customary "cooling off period" in the early stages of free agency, Dallas has added only one notable outside free agent to the roster.

They embark on the 2024 NFL draft with more needs than roster picks available. A case can be made for the Cowboys to focus in on a few key areas of the roster and cluster bomb those, but with so many needs across all parts of the team, Dallas can also sit back and just let the players come to them.

In this 7-round mock draft exercise the Cowboys spread the wealth, so to speak, and attack positions across the roster. Each pick will go to a different position group and the Cowboys can see how far their picks can spread.

Using draft resources like the NFL Mock Draft Database simulator and scouting reports from NFL Draft Buzz, Dane Brugler at the Athletic, and PFF we can run through scenarios supported by the experts and in line with the front office’s behavior.

Round 1, Pick 24: OT JC Latham

For months JC Latham has been seen as a lock to go in the top-20 of the 2024 NFL draft but recent days have seen a fall in draft stock and the Cowboys find themselves positioned to jump on it.

Latham, Alabama’s next great blue-chip lineman, raised red flags to scouts when he opted out of athletic testing at his pro day. One can assume he did so because the scores he was seeing on his own were poorer than outside expectations and more likely to hurt his overall value, than help.

It adds to concerns that Latham is a RT-only and not the LT prospect most teams look for in the first round. Latham didn’t make the move to LT his last season in Alabama and the Crimson Tide really needed a LT. If Nick Saban didn’t move Latham, it was probably for a reason and that, combined with his lack of athletic testing, are cause for concern for teams picking in early.

But Latham still tested well in pro day positional drills and his body of work at RT in Alabama is impressive as well. At the very worst Latham is a dominant RT or OG in the NFL so he’s not necessarily running the risk of being a bust.

It’s a gamble to think Latham is an instant replacement to Tyron Smith at LT but he could easily start at LG (if Tyler Smith moves to LT) or to RT (if Terence Steele doesn’t play better) on Day 1. A pick like this looks very similar to the Tyler Smith pick in 2021 when the Cowboys were hoping he’d be a LT one day, but content with him just being a dominant LG if all else fails.