Pick Six: Cowboys’ all-time draft busts

NFL.com senior analyst Pat Kirwan offered up his two-round mock draft, and one name that stood out was Nebraska CB Prince Amukamara going to the Cowboys. Interesting choice, and when you think of the Cowboys drafting a defensive back you can’t help but think of the famed Rod Hill pick in 1982.

Would Hill make this list of top draft busts? No, not if I want to speak to Gil Brandt ever again. Just kidding! So without further ado, the top six busts in Cowboys history.

Also considered: Hill, CB Aaron Kyle, T Howard Richards and WR Mike Sherrard.

David LaFleur was taken 20th overall in 1997. (George Bridges/Associated Press)

6. Julius Jones, 43rd overall, 2004
Hard to put a second-round pick in this spot, but when you consider the players the Cowboys were linked to, well, this pick just looks worse.

Could have had: RB Steven Jackson. This almost seemed a lock as Jackson had grown up a Cowboys fan, and the team needed a running back. Instead, the Cowboys traded their first-round pick to the Bills and took Jones. The pick the Cowboys got from the Bills in exchange landed DE Marcus Spears.

5. Danny Noonan, 12th overall pick, 1987
Noonan impressed in the weight room, and there were visions of him being the next Randy White. Instead of the Manster, he was more of a buster.

Could have had: Noonan was the cap of a four-year run of first-round busts for the Cowboys. T Bruce Armstrong would have been the first of four consecutive Hall of Famers taken in the first round of the draft by the team — Michael Irvin (1988), Troy Aikman (1989), Emmitt Smith (1990).

4. LB Bobby Carpenter, 18th overall, 2006
Carpenter never made much of an impact during his four years with the Cowboys, outside of his appearance on HBO’s “Hard Knocks” when he was mocked by lineman Marc Colombo who called him “Barbie” Carpenter.

Could have had: CB Antonio Cromartie, although you could argue that things could not have ended well for Cromartie in Dallas.

3. DE Ebenezer Ekuban, 20th overall, 1999
The Cowboys spent a good deal of time trying to find the next Charles Haley during the 1990s. Needless to say, Ekuban was no Haley.

Could have had: DE Patrick Kerney might not have been the next Haley, but he would have been a pretty good player for the Cowboys.

2. TE David LaFleur, 20th overall, 1997
The Cowboys also spent a great deal of time trying to unearth the next Jay Novacek in the draft, too. When you think of how hard the Cowboys tried to replace Haley and Novacek, you realize how valuable they were to the Cowboys.

Could have had: The Cowboys should have done whatever it took to get Tony Gonzalez. And if they couldn’t, DE Marcellus Wiley would have prevented them from needing Greg Ellis the next year.

1. DE Shante Carver 23rd pick, 1994
This pick smacks of Jerry Jones thinking to himself, “I’ll show that Jimmy Johnson a thing or two.” Yeah, mission accomplished.

Could have had: WR Isaac Bruce, who would have taken over for the departing Alvin Harper the following season.

Was Carver the worst draft bust in team history? Normally you all are too shy to offer your opinions, not only of my hairstyle but my picks, but I implore you to sound off.

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