Previous blunders prevented Cowboys' Jerry Jones from placing higher in GM rankings

Oct 23, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA;   Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones before the game against the
Oct 23, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones before the game against the / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Jerry Jones is technically the general manager of the Dallas Cowboys, but everyone knows Stephen Jones and vice president of player personnel and draft guru Will McClay have some semblance of input in roster moves.

Ultimately, though, Jerry Jones gets the final say. 

A large contingent of Cowboys fans want Jones to step aside and hire a grizzled football mind to play the role of general manager. McClay is a popular shout, but it's wishful thinking at this rate to think Jones will concede any influence. 

That's not all bad, however. While Jones takes his fair share of criticism, he's done great work as Dallas' chief shot-caller. His drafting resume speaks for itself, though it's impossible to say he's solely responsible for the results. 

With that, where should Jones rank among the league's general managers? Like he does every year, Gregg Rosenthal of NFL Network ranked all 32 executives and Jones just cracked the top-10 placing No. 10 of 32. 

Cowboys' Jerry Jones cracks top-10 in NFL general manager rankings 

Here's what Rosenthal said of Jones: 

"The top-shelf talent is close to the top of the league. There are homegrown Hall of Famers. After two straight years of winning, which has become a rarity in the Jerry Jones era, it's time to give this front office some credit. Perhaps the increased influence of personnel VP Will McClay and COO Stephen Jones has helped the Cowboys, who still struggle at times with self-scouting (SEE: Amari Cooper trade). Brandin Cooks and Stephon Gilmore were smart veteran acquisitions for the price, but this ranking is mostly about Dallas' consistently strong drafts that keep hitting, especially in the first round."

You could certainly argue that Jones should've placed higher than the Packers' Brian Gutekunst (No. 8) and Seahawks' John Schneider (No. 9).

Schneider has substantial gaffes on their resume, but the Seahawks won a Super Bowl and went to another under Schneider's watch. Gutekunst, on the other hand, has made up to 10 regrettable moves during his reign as Packers general manager, to say nothing of torpedoing his relationship with Aaron Rodgers. 

That said, Jones has a number of misfires on his resume, too.

Trading Amari Cooper for what amounted to pocket change because Jones didn't want to pay his affordable $20 million salary springs to mind. As does allowing the Dak Prescott extension saga drag out as long as it did.

The Cowboys cost themselves a ton of money not paying Prescott early. To make matters worse, Jones made Ezekiel Elliott the highest-paid running back in NFL history with a six-year, $90 million contract that included $50 million guaranteed despite Elliott having nearly 1,000 carries on his tires and it being obvious he would decline long before that deal expired ... all before Prescott inked his extension. 

Those are three notable missteps, but Jones could stand to jump up the rankings this time next year if Dallas hits another home run in the draft and the acquisitions of Brandin Cooks and Stephon Gilmore help the Cowboys make a deep playoff run next season.  

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