Cowboys Turn Focus Towards Draft

Save for a possible look at Lions quarterback Joey Harrington, the Cowboys are focused primarily on the draft now.

After accomplishing nearly all of their goals of free agency, the Cowboys can head into the draft looking to improve the team with the best athlete available.

Simply put, Dallas does not have to reach for a need position.

What's more, the team is already significantly better than they were at the end of last season. So now, they are focusing on finding draft picks who will continue to improve the team.

The free-agent haul includes a club record seven additions to the tune of $20 million in signing bonus money.

Receiver Terrell Owens was the gem of the free-agent class. But the Cowboys also addressed needs on the offensive line (tackle Jason Fabini and guard Kyle Kosier), linebacker (Akin Ayodele and Rocky Boiman), tight end (Ryan Hannam) and kicker (Mike Vanderjagt).

Their biggest remaining need is getting a free safety to play opposite strong safety Roy Williams. Marcus Coleman, formerly of the Texans, is an option there. But this also a position they could address in the draft.

Again, only if it's the best player on the board.

With that in mind, don't be surprised if the Cowboys take a wide receiver in the first round. As the draft seems to be shaking out, Florida speedy receiver Chad Jackson could be their man. The Cowboys need to get younger at receiver with Terry Glenn and Owens heading into their 11th years.

Jackson could be the best available player while also allowing the Cowboys to address a future need.

Look for the Cowboys to address the offensive and defensive line at some point in the draft. It's just a matter of policy that they try to stockpile as many linemen as possible. With La'Roi Glover gone at defensive tackle, leaving no depth behind starter Jason Ferguson, the defensive line will be addressed but not reached for.

Updated Team Needs
1. Safety: The Cowboys like Keith Davis, but they like him best as a special teams player. They will need a free safety to play opposite Roy Williams. Texas cornerback/safety Michael Huff would be a good fit but he will be long gone by the time Cowboys pick.

2. Linebacker: Dat Nguyen retired. The Cowboys need a replacement at inside linebacker. They signed Akin Ayodele as a new outside linebacker. Ohio State's Bobby Carpenter is intriguing because his father played for Bill Parcells with the Giants.

3. Offensive line: The signing of Jason Fabini and Kyle Kosier instantly gives the Cowboys a better chance for success in 2006, but the team still wants to get younger and more talented at almost every position up front.

CowboysHQ Top Stories