Former GM has Cowboys making grievous Dak Prescott mistake in NFL Draft

There's just no way Jerry Jones considers this, right?
NFC Wild Card Playoffs - Green Bay Packers v Dallas Cowboys
NFC Wild Card Playoffs - Green Bay Packers v Dallas Cowboys / Richard Rodriguez/GettyImages

Soon enough, we're going to find out what the Dallas Cowboys will be doing with their No. 24 overall pick. This team has plenty of holes to fill on both sides of the ball, with rumors swirling Dallas could focus on finding a Tyron Smith replacement at offensive tackle.

Oklahoma tackle Tyler Guyton has emerged as the overwhelming favorite for the Cowboys' first-round pick. Some of the most respect and in-the-know draft experts in the industry have Dallas taking Guyton in round one, including ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. and The Athletic's Dane Brugler.

The Cowboys are normally easy to predict when it comes to the draft, but could Jerry Jones and Co. shock us all by looking at a new quarterback? A QB on day three would make a semblance of sense, but former Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum sees it entirely different.

While speaking on ESPN, Tannenbaum said he thinks the Cowboys could be a surprise team to target a first-round signal-caller, with him eyeing Washington's Michael Penix Jr. as a possible Dak Prescott replacement. This follows Adam Schefter listing Dallas as a sleeper team that could take a QB early.

Mike Tannenbaum thinks Cowboys will draft Dak Prescott's successor in first round

Tannenbaum's main argument is that bringing in a youngster like Penix would save the Cowboys a ton of dough, especially with CeeDee Lamb and Micah Parsons likely to sign record-setting extensions. Prescott is entering the final year of his contract and the belief is he'll be looking for more than $60 million per season moving forward.

Having a Penix-type QB, per Tannenbaum, on a rookie deal would be a smart way to go for Dallas. Tannenbaum isn't saying Penix will end up being as good as Prescott, but he thinks the savings would be worth it to make Lamb and Parsons happy, while also having an exciting youngster take over the offense on a much cheaper contract.

Save the Cowboys money? It's a surprise Jerry Jones hasn't hired Tannenbaum for a role in Dallas' front office. Signing Prescott to an extension, regardless of his annual salary, will give the team more flexibility from a cap perspective. The same can be said for Lamb and Parsons' eventual new deals. Money isn't the problem Jerry and Tannenbaum make it out to be. One would think Tannenbaum would see the forrest for the trees as a former GM.

While Penix has a cannon for an arm, we find it hard to believe that the Cowboys are going to throw in the towel on Prescott at this point in his career. During the 2023 season, we saw how electric he could be with the ball in his hands. While the campaign ended in infuriating fashion, you can't put all the blame on Prescott.

It appears Tannenbaum hasn't done his homework. The Cowboys didn't spend money when Prescott was on his rookie contract. That won't change with Penix, or any other rookie quarterback. Remember who Dallas' receivers were to start the 2018 season (Dak's third year as a fourth-round pick)? Cole Beasley, a rookie Michael Gallup, Allen Hurts, Deonte Thompson, Tavon Austin, Noah Brown and Terrance Williams.

Should the Cowboys use a first-rounder on a QB instead of bringing in help, it's going to be a major head-scratcher. Prescott would still start in 2024, but it would open the door wide open for his exit next offseason. Some folks may be in favor of this, but we think the majority of Cowboys Nation would be livid to see this happen.

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