Packers stole perfect Cowboys draft target who was convinced he was going to Dallas

Dallas Cowboys v New Orleans Saints
Dallas Cowboys v New Orleans Saints / Jonathan Bachman/GettyImages

We are almost two weeks removed from the NFL Draft and tidbits and nuggets are beginning to trickle out from league insiders. Ultimately, multiple predictions as it pertains to the Dallas Cowboys came true: they drafted an offensive tackle in round one and traded back to get an additional day two pick.

Everything aside from that came as a shock In round two, the Cowboys surprised everyone with their selection of DE Marshawn Kneeland. They view Kneeland as a DeMarcus Lawrence clone because of his ability to win with power and speed and defend the run.

Some quality running backs, linebackers wide receivers were on the board when Dallas took Kneeland at pick No. 57. Namely, Michigan linebacker Junior Colson, Florida State RB Trey Benson, and Western Michigan wideout Malachi Corley went shortly after Kneeland.

The Cowboys eventually drafted a linebacker with their second third-round pick in Notre Dame product Marist Liufau, who fits a huge need as a downhill thumper who possesses the toughness that Mike Zimmer desires in his second-level defenders.

The Liufau pick was regarded as a reach by many draft experts, and it's since been learned that another prospect was convinced that Dallas was taking him where they took Liufau at pick No. 87 overall.

USC running back Marshawn Lloyd was convinced he was going to the Cowboys

ESPN's Jeremy Fowler believes USC running back Marshawn Lloyd, a 30-visit with Dallas, was a serious candidate for the Cowboys when they took Liufau.

"Dallas had shown enough pre-draft love to MarShawn Lloyd that the USC tailback (who went to Green Bay at No. 88) thought the Cowboys would be one of the possible teams to draft him."

Lloyd isn't alone in thinking that. Numerous Cowboys fans believed Lloyd was going to be the selection at No. 87. After the Rams took Michigan running back Blake Corum with the 83rd pick, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that Lloyd would be gone before Dallas' turn.

The fact he fell left folks convinced he was coming to the Cowboys. When they took Liufau, though, the Packers seemingly rushed to the podium to submit their Lloyd pick. Fans have every reason to be excited about Liufau, but they'll be watching Lloyd's career arc closely to see if Liufau was the correct call.

Lloyd was highly regarded coming into the draft. NFL Network expert Daniel Jeremiah ranked Lloyd as his top-ranked RB in the class. His forced 0.41 missed tackles per carry topped the nation amongst draft-eligible backs, per PFF. A whopping 65% of Lloyd's career rushing yards came after contact.

The former Trojan has the tools to be a three-down back in the NFL. He'll likely have a role in Green Bay's offense as a rookie, but he'll be the clear RB2 behind Josh Jacobs, who signed a four-year, $48 million contract with the Packers, including $12.5 million fully guaranteed.

It will be some time before Lloyd is a starter, which is a shame. Given the Cowboys' need for a running back, he's not wrong for thinking he was coming to Dallas. Now you have to think that Lloyd will be out to prove Jerry Jones wrong for passing on him in favor of Liufau.

More Cowboys news and analysis