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.