The 2023 season ended in complete disaster for the Dallas Cowboys, and as everyone does their post-mortem of the lost year, the 2023 NFL Draft class isn't making things any better. At least if you had a great regular season and a disappointing playoff loss, you would love to be able to see the young players on the team setting the franchise up for future success.
Unfortunately for the Dallas Cowboys in 2023, the rookies didn't do much at all...
And what's worse is seeing guys they could have had on the roster instead. Hindsight is always 20/20 when it comes to the NFL Draft, and hindsight will undoubtedly torture you, but it's clear that the Cowboys could have had a more impactful class in 2023 than what they actually got.
This is going to be tough, but let's re-grade the 2023 NFL Draft class for Dallas.
1. Mazi Smith, DL -- Grade: C-
It was a tough rookie year for the athletic freak out of Michigan. Mazi Smith was active for all 17 games for the Cowboys, but how active was he really?
He finished the year with 13 total tackles, three tackles for loss, three QB hits, and a sack. The NFL is anything but an exact science, but for Smith to be drafted at a clear position of need for Dallas and only play 28 percent of the team's snaps? That's not what anyone wanted at all.
I am giving this pick a grade of C- because you have to have some patience, and I don't think Smith is a bad player. It's also tough to pick players late in round one, and not everyone is going to win Rookie of the Year. However, this pick gets a bit of a knock considering the Cowboys were clearly in the market for a tight end, and they had Sam LaPorta staring them right in the face here.
Unfortunately, LaPorta landed a handful of picks later with Detroit, and put together one of the best rookie years for a tight end in league history.