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Cowboys wanted Barr, Donald or Shazier but settled for Martin


When the Cowboys were on the clock on Thursday night, the talk among fans was whether Dallas would select Johnny Manziel. But the talk in the Cowboys’ draft room was about the disappointment of losing out on the players they were really hoping to grab.

The Dallas Morning News reports that the Cowboys wanted to improve their defense in the first round, and they were hoping that pass rusher Anthony Barr, defensive tackle Aaron Donald or linebacker Ryan Shazier would be available. Barr went No. 9 to Minnesota and Donald went No. 13 to St. Louis. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Shazier’s agent was on the phone with the Cowboys and Shazier’s dad was preparing to tell people that he was going to Dallas, right up until the point that the Steelers took Shazier one spot before the Cowboys could grab him.

Once Shazier was off the board, the Cowboys reportedly tried to trade down, but they didn’t find any takers while they were on the clock, and they ended up with Zack Martin, a versatile offensive lineman who will likely start at guard as a rookie.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Martin, Barr, Donald and Shazier all had the same grade, but it appears that Martin was a consolation prize for the Cowboys.

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51 Responses to “Cowboys wanted Barr, Donald or Shazier but settled for Martin”
  1. wfederal says: May 12, 2014 7:20 AM

    That will make Martin feel really welcome in the locker room…

  2. enochmh2 says: May 12, 2014 7:22 AM

    Jerry had a front row view of the worst safety play last season Yet doesn’t address that position at all

  3. braven4evr says: May 12, 2014 7:28 AM

    They got a very good player…was hoping he was there for my Ravens. They could have taken a worse player.

  4. ialwayswantedtobeabanker says: May 12, 2014 7:30 AM

    The Cowboys assumed Pittsburgh was going CB, and had Shazier’s name on the draft card already. Boom, they got a little surprise – and seemed very much caught off balance.

    This reminds me of the 1974 draft, where the Steelers personnel people and Chuck Noll had a major dispute on the Steelers first round pick at the 01.22.

    Noll wanted to grab John Stallworth with the 01.22, but Steelers scouts and player personnel people really had to grind on Noll – pleading that Stall would be available for selection later. This dispute between Noll and scouting/player personnel continued – and Pittsburgh’s pick was set to expire. Dallas, picking next, had already submitted their card to Commissioner Rozelle’s staff.

    With just seconds remaining before Pittsburgh’s pick expired, the Steelers just got their pick in under the wire. The Steelers selected Lynn Swann of USC.

    The name written on Dallas’ card? Lynn Swann of USC.

    Swine went on to absolutely torture Dallas in the 70’s Super Bowls, and played an essential role in ensuring Pittsburgh was the team of the 70’s — not Dallas.

    About Stall, the Steelers landed him in Round 4, as predicted – and both Stall and Swannie were enshrined in Canton.

  5. vikesr4reel says: May 12, 2014 7:30 AM

    JJ is a joke

  6. ravenswhat says: May 12, 2014 7:32 AM

    If they wanted shazier, why would they not draft Mosely?? Strange.

  7. tahnoonzee says: May 12, 2014 7:34 AM

    JJ hangs out with Romo too much. No doubt they would have selected Manziel but he didn’t want to hurt Romo’s feelings.

  8. rs says: May 12, 2014 7:35 AM

    Talk among fans was whether Dallas would select Johnny Manziel? Wow, that talk seemed almost entirely media driven, yet here we have an article contradicting those reports (finally).

    The article also suggests that drafting Martin was some kind of consolation prize, which is pretty much the entire nature of the draft. Almost every pick, bar the first few potentially, are consolation prizes if you agree with this logic.

    It feels like the media are bending over themselves to somehow show the Cowboys pick in a negative light, but just can’t quite figure out how to do it. Martin was a solid selection, good value at the pick and will likely outlast many of the players selected above him.

  9. chieftaindawg says: May 12, 2014 7:41 AM

    That safety that the Jets picked up will be a beast!

  10. noahbird says: May 12, 2014 7:41 AM

    Damn. The Fins couldn’t grab Martin!?

  11. fin72 says: May 12, 2014 7:42 AM

    Martin is a good player, but that’s a high pick to spend on a guard (which he will 100% be for the Cowboys), plain and simple.

  12. jpb12 says: May 12, 2014 7:46 AM

    This is 1994 and Willie McGinest all over again

  13. fishyinalittledishy says: May 12, 2014 7:52 AM

    Interesting. I wonder why the Dolphins did not want to do business as they were after a guard and everybody had Martin higher than James. Would Dallas have told Miami that if you don’t trade with us we will take him. It probably tells us that Miami had other ideas about who in there eyes was the better prospect or Jerry wanted to much from Miami to jump a couple of places. Will be interesting to see how all this pans out over the next couple of years.

  14. dccowboy says: May 12, 2014 8:02 AM

    There is no guarantee that Martin will be 100% a guard. Certainly he will most likely be a guard this season, but, with Free in his last year of his contract and being 30, it is more likely that Dallas lets him walk and kicks Mrtin out to RT.

    In any case, you hadn’t noticed 2 Guards went in the top 11 picks last year, so, the old paradigm that teams don’t draft Guards high appears to be changing. The reason is that teams have finally recognized that QBs have more trouble dealing with pressure up the middle than from the edges – which is why defensive teams have been concentrating on a better interior pass rush – which sparks the need for better interior OL. It’s a cycle.

    I won a good bit of beer betting my non-Cowboy fan friends, who were absolutely certain that Dallas would take Manziel if he was available at 16, that Dallas would not take Manziel unless he fell to the 3rd rd or lower. I knew Dallas would not take Manziel in the first.

  15. tvjules says: May 12, 2014 8:03 AM

    Is this about the 5th time that Jerry has justified his pick?

  16. officialgame says: May 12, 2014 8:10 AM

    It goes to show you how inept the Cowboys have become. Move up if you want to guarantee yourself someone you really want.

  17. fissels says: May 12, 2014 8:13 AM

    When you pick 16th, you can’t know who will drop to you. So, of course they had several possible picks.

  18. singisking says: May 12, 2014 8:13 AM

    How ’bout dem rationalizers!!

  19. steveohho says: May 12, 2014 8:16 AM

    1st round and they draft a guard????

    Who is Jerry channeling? Bo Schembechler?

  20. gammynomnom says: May 12, 2014 8:16 AM

    This just in … every team except the Texans had to settle for their second choice .

  21. dalfanforever says: May 12, 2014 8:18 AM

    I didn’t think this was a secret actually.

  22. computojon says: May 12, 2014 8:22 AM

    If Dallas hadn’t grabbed Martin, the Rams would have traded up and gotten him with the next pick, according to various news sources.

  23. 4thandlonger says: May 12, 2014 8:26 AM

    Could well have had similar grades on all of them. Just the 3 on defense (worst in the league last year) were more of a need.

  24. myeaglescantwin says: May 12, 2014 8:35 AM

    i was impressed by the lack of idiocricy in the Dallas draft process..

    almost worried they have a chance this year.. .almost.

  25. 3yardsndust says: May 12, 2014 8:39 AM

    I think Pryor or Clinton-Dix would have been a better pick for them at 16.

  26. notthetroll says: May 12, 2014 8:41 AM

    I don’t think any of that was news. I think they did well for staying to the board.

  27. romo2witten says: May 12, 2014 8:45 AM

    This just in…the Cowboys would have drafted Clowney if he had been available at pick 16.

  28. truninerfan49 says: May 12, 2014 8:48 AM

    Jerry knows that you can trade up right ??

  29. seatownballers says: May 12, 2014 8:49 AM


  30. indymarc says: May 12, 2014 8:54 AM

    Dallas having the 16th selection proves how average they are. Drafting right in the middle of the pack. Zack Martin could be a great player for many years and they should be glad he was there to pick.

  31. surfinbird1 says: May 12, 2014 8:58 AM

    Jerry sittin next to his hand puppet.

  32. Steeley McBeam says: May 12, 2014 9:08 AM

    ravenswhat says:May 12, 2014 7:32 AM

    If they wanted shazier, why would they not draft Mosely??


    Because Mosley has reached his potential and Shazier’s celing is as high as the sky. I don’t think the talent gap between the two is really that close.

  33. farmmbig says: May 12, 2014 9:18 AM

    Now I have to wonder why so many national media guys had Anthony Barr sliding so much in their late mocks— Some projecting him to go in Seattle at #32?….

    Could it be that Jerry has some of those guys doing his smokescreen?…

    I’m glad to see the Vikings didn’t buy into it and took him at #9…. I think he’s going to have a great role in his first season, with plans of easing him into a starting spot for year #2… Solid pick by the Vikings! Skol!!

  34. yate3097 says: May 12, 2014 9:27 AM

    The Cowboys were trying to trade down from #16?

    The Rams were trying to trade back into the first round to take Zack Martin and were talking to the Ravens @ #17.

    Ships passing in the night.

  35. redsoxu571 says: May 12, 2014 9:29 AM

    I love the reactions by some people. “Reached for a guard”, says the trolls! Umm, no.

    Meanwhile, a few fools were calling this “pick justification”. Also no. Some people wondered why Dallas didn’t address the defense, and the answer is now clear: the team had four equally rated players it felt it had a shot at, and used defense as the tiebreaker in listing them. With the three defenders gone, the team went with the other quality player available.

    This whole thing went against everything people wrongly assume about Jones. No “splashy” Manziel pick (Jones has shown no inclination to draft for a splash, don’t know where that myth comes from). No “stupid reach”, as Martin was the consensus BPA. Given the team needs, it made sense to take a shot at trading down, so Jones worked the phone, but he didn’t force an offer that wasn’t good enough. So tell me, little trolls…what seems to continue to be the problem? You know you wouldn’t be criticizing this (in fact, you’d be praising it) if the name of the speaker weren’t Jerry Jones and the team weren’t the Cowboys.

  36. larryboodry says: May 12, 2014 10:00 AM

    “Jerry had a front row view of the worst safety play last season Yet doesn’t address that position at all.”

    I didn’t realize Jerry was sneaking into Soldier Field to watch the Bears.

  37. filthymcnasty1 says: May 12, 2014 10:11 AM

    Patience Jerry, patience. In 2 years you’ll be able to get Barr for a 7th rounder.

  38. thraiderskin says: May 12, 2014 10:14 AM

    That isn’t a fair assessment Steeley, both players would have been fantastic pick ups, Shazier is just considered more durable and faster, but I think Mosley is slighty more refined at that position.

  39. Carl Brutananadilewski says: May 12, 2014 10:23 AM

    In other words, theCowboys only had the video feed in the “wa room” in order to dupe the fans into thinking they got who they wanted. So after settling for 4th on their list of desired players, the video feed of Jones and his minions fist pumping and everything was nothing but a show for the fans, lol… Classic Cowboys

  40. noross says: May 12, 2014 11:37 AM

    So the Cowboys wanted Barr? No problem for Jerry. After June 1, he’ll get his edge rusher when he sends Zack Martin to Miami for Dion Jordan.

  41. granadafan says: May 12, 2014 11:41 AM

    Hate the Cowboys and their loudmouthed owner, but I have to laugh at Jerry’s complete manipulation of Todd McShay who was 100% convinced that Dallas would take Manziel. McShay is so desperate for “inside info” that he was a willing stool pigeon for a gigantic smokescreen. Dallas may not have picked their 1st, 2nd, or 3rd choice in the first round, but they sure got the publicity they sought and made a fool of McShay. Well played.

  42. cowboysspurs88 says: May 12, 2014 11:44 AM

    Um yeah that’s usually how the draft works. You usually don’t end up with your first choice unless you have the top pick. Thanks for doing your best to degrade the Cowboys even more though it was definitely necessary.

  43. steveohho says: May 12, 2014 11:52 AM

    Next year, they can draft a fullback in the 1st, and they will be set!

  44. ctgiant says: May 12, 2014 12:10 PM

    The cow-pokes are dam lucky the giants SHOULD have picked Martin, he can play anywhere, no issues, would probably go to the right side but a sure fire O-lineman, they will have to play.
    Jones just needs to shut up, you got a good player!

  45. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: May 12, 2014 12:31 PM

    I kind of figured it went that way but sometimes things work out for a reason.

    Jimmy Johnson was trying to draft a LB named James Francis but couldn’t move up to get him so Jimmy had to settle for a RB named Emmitt Smith. True.

  46. icebowler says: May 12, 2014 1:35 PM

    All great organizations will never reveal the disappointments of their draft boards, even years later.

  47. trollaikman8 says: May 12, 2014 1:48 PM

    They’ll have the 16th pick next year and hopefully better luck with getting the guy they wanted.

  48. mb34 says: May 12, 2014 5:27 PM

    Funny…The Cowboys were also on the wrong end of the #1 draft day trade that could have gotten them a real HOF’er.

    The 49ers made a trade with the Patriots in the 1985 draft at position 16 to take none other than Jerry Rice. The Cowboys were at pick 17 and poised to take Mr. Rice at that pick.

    Man, just wondering how his career would have been different had he been picked by Dal vs. SF.

  49. nclrbrt says: May 12, 2014 5:55 PM

    Best part about the whole thing is how the Steelers managed to snatch Shazier right from under Jerry’s nose.

  50. politicallyincorrect says: May 12, 2014 7:53 PM

    poor Martin….. I’m sure he did not want to be this consolation prize

  51. gammynomnom says: May 13, 2014 12:23 AM

    Remember when you guys were busting on him for taking Frederick first last year? Yea, All Rookie team center, outplayed most of those Olinemen at the top of the draft. Hate on.

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