For months, Dallas Cowboys fans dreaded the idea of Bijan Robinson landing with the Philadelphia Eagles in the first round of the NFL Draft.
Already boasting an elite rushing attack, many fans (and analysts) penciled Robinson to Philly as the final piece to the Eagles' offensive puzzle. The thought of contending a running game headlined by Robinson and Jalen Hurts, who tallied 760 yards and 13 TDs on the ground in 2022, was terrifying.
You know what's worse than Robinson going to Philly? How about the draft falling perfect for Howie Roseman and allowing the general manager the necessary wiggle room to trade up for the consensus best player in the draft?
That's exactly what happened, as the Eagles traded up to No. 9 overall to draft Georgia defender Jalen Carter, who surprisingly made it out of the top five.
Eagles draft Jalen Carter in first round as Cowboys fans' worst nightmare is realized
Numerous mock drafts projected Carter to the Seahawks at No. 5 overall. When Seattle drafted Illinois corner Devon Witherspoon, though, reality quickly settled in that Roseman would find a way to add Carter to a defense that led the league with 70 (SEVENTY) sacks last season.
The Cardinals, Raiders and Falcons represented the Cowboys' last hope. However, Arizona moved up for Ohio State tackle Paris Johnson, Las Vegas took Texas Tech edge Tyree Wilson and Atlanta -- somewhat predictably -- drafted Bijan Robinson with the eighth pick, setting the stage for Philly to jump one spot.
All it took was a fourth round pick for the Eagles to get arguably the most talented player in the draft. Because of course that's what happened.
This always was going to go one of two ways for the Cowboys. Either Robinson or Carter was going to Philly. The fact the draft unfolded perfectly for the reigning NFC champs makes you sick to your stomach.
It'd be one thing if Roseman jumped four or so spots for Carter and gave up a first or second-round pick. That would've made this palatable. The fact the trade was set up on a silver platter makes it all the more infuriating, but Cowboys fans should've braced themselves for the Eagles to hit a home run Thursday night.
The draft obviously isn't a bust for Dallas, who could easily return the favor over the course of the next three days (history suggests they will). It's just a bummer that the Eagles, once again, executed a slam dunk.