The NFL gives the media and fans ample opportunity throughout the offseason to get psyched for the upcoming season, and the NFL draft is no exception.
However, there is one thing I must ask from the media and fans alike.
Please stop with the NFL Draft "grades."
Anyone "grading" how a team did immediately after the draft does not have football intelligence. I'm sorry if this hurts your ego, but it's true.
There is absolutely no way to know how well your team did in the draft for at least a couple years—and sometimes more.
I also do not believe in Mel Kiper or any of the TV pinheads, who are never held accountable for anything they say.
I believe and trust in the guys that did the research, watched hundreds of hours of film, and are paid to do their job for an NFL team.
As a Dallas Cowboys fan, I'm sorry to say that there are just as many "draft gurus" cheering for America's team as any other.
For those know-it-all's, you might want to ask yourself: "If I know so much, why am I not working for an NFL team?"
On paper, the Cowboys had a less than spectacular draft. There were no "big" names drafted by Jerry Jones and the gang. But what positions did the Cowboys have have a major hole at?
The Cowboys had enough talent before the draft began to compete for the Super Bowl. Last year's debacle had nothing to do with lack of talent, it had to do with poor coaching decisions and team chemistry.
Eliminating Terrell Owens should improve the chemistry, but by removing the "cancer" in the locker room, it also erased a very productive football player. (By the way, it is hilarious to see opposing fans talking about how much the Cowboys are going to miss T.O., when last year they were saying that T.O. was the problem.)
In steps Roy Williams, who you can call the Cowboys' 2009 "first rounder."
Williams didn't have a very good 2008, but he put up decent numbers for one of the biggest train wrecks in football, the Detroit Lions, every year he was there. He is now surrounded with talent, and giving him an offseason to work with Tony Romo (they have been working out together daily since the end of February) should pay dividends.
Like it or not, he is a more proven commodity than the receivers taken in the 2009 draft. Since it takes an average of three years for a receiver to become an impact player in the NFL, the Cowboys may be ahead of the game.
As for the actual Cowboys' draftees, I'll be honest, I only know a lot about one of them, Clemson safety Michael Hamlin. But that doesn't mean that this draft class is horrible.
For those who think this class is the worst Cowboys draft ever, I'm guessing you don't know when Roger Staubach was drafted? How about Joe Montana, Tom Brady or Kurt Warner? (10th, third, sixth round, and undrafted, respectively). Those four guys led their teams to 15 Super Bowls. Quite an accomplishment for some "no-name, low draft picks"
What I do believe is the Cowboys got a lot of much needed depth in some core areas, especially on defense and special teams.
In the 3-4, you can never have too many linebackers. In the NFL, you can never have too many defensive backs. Dallas stockpiled both.
It seems that the Cowboys made special teams a major focal point of this draft. USC kicker David Buehler should have opponent's starting their drives from the 20, instead of the 35. The other defensive draftees had special team's experience in college, and would make the Cowboys younger in that area.
There is also the business side. If you have to pay first round money to rookies every year, the cap space dwindles, and you risk losing solid veteran players. The Cowboys already have a tremendous amount of talented veterans on their team, and would love to keep the "Star" on their helmets.
An NFL team can't get a bunch of paper tigers in the first round, pay them an obscene amount of money every single year, hoping that they turn out great. That is unless they want to become the Detroit Lions or Oakland Raiders.
Cowboys' fans, let the next few seasons play out before we start judging this class. And when we do, let's base it on the value at which the Cowboys got them.