Ranking the Cowboys’ last 10 first-round draft picks

The Dallas Cowboys have had some strong picks in Round 1
Dallas Cowboys, CeeDee Lamb
Dallas Cowboys, CeeDee Lamb / Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
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6. Byron Jones, DB (2015)

Fresh off a disheartening loss to the Green Bay Packers in the "Dez Caught it" playoff game, the Cowboys wanted to shore up their secondary for another run. They had sunk a lot into the back end of their defense after signing Brandon Carr to a long-term deal and trading up for Morris Claiborne in 2012 but they still had issues. This led to the selection of Byron Jones out of Connecticut at No. 27 overall.

Jones was an athletic marvel who set the NFL Combine record when he leaped 12 feet and 3 inches at the broad jump. That was six inches more than Jamie Collins, who had set the record two years prior. That led to one nickname, "Jumpman," but he also became known as "Senator" due to his professional demeanor and approach to the game.

As a rookie, Jones spent much of his time at free safety but his man coverage skills were far superior to his work in zone. He proved this during a Week 5 loss to the New England Patriots when he drew the assignment to follow Rob Gronkowski.

The All-Pro tight end had four receptions for 67 yards but scored no touchdowns. It was a solid effort from Jones and it proved he belonged.

After three years of playing safety, Jones finally moved to cornerback full-time in 2018 and was special. Jones made the Second-Team All-Pro and was considered one of the best "shut-down" corners in the NFL. He again proved to be an elite coverage corner in 2019 but left in 2020 when the Cowboys didn't extend his contract.

Jones signed a massive five-year, $82 million deal with the Miami Dolphins and in the end, Dallas did the right thing by letting him go. Jones struggled for two years with injuries and inconsistency with the Dolphins and last played in 2021. Still, he was phenomenal in Dallas making him a great pick.