The Cowboys made one of the memorable trades of the first round, sending their 14th pick and a second-rounder to the Rams for the right to select No. 6 overall. It was a bold move, and one that left them with an elite player at a key position — LSU CB Morris Claiborne.
In a wacky first day of the NFL Draft, this was old-school Jerry Jones being his usual wacky and bold self. This will be one that will be talked about for years. But the surprising thing was reaction from the Cowboys from a value standpoint.
In short, they kinda feel like they fleeced the Rams. Sure, St. Louis is Need City. But not this bad. Anyway, listen to Cowboys VP Stephen Jones talk after the news conference.
“We said, ‘Well, what we do we need to do to come up?” Stephen Jones recounted. “And the (Rams) said, ‘We may not need as much as we normally would.‘ ”
If you look at the draft value chart — right here — Jones said it really should’ve been a second and a fourth to move up those eight spots. And he’s right with the math. The rookie wage scale might change things. … But anyway, why was it so cheap?
Jones wasn’t sure. But they feel like they got a special player out of it.
“Maybe they just were wanting to accumulate some picks,” Jones said. “And maybe who they were after, they didn’t feel like they needed to be that high. I don’t know. I can’t answer that other than, we thought that was pretty interesting. Of course, when we went through it one more time, then we were really interested. There was one guy we would go up for, and that was it. Other than that, we were keeping our picks.”
When Claiborne made it to No. 4, Jerry Jones was on the phone with him. When the Jaguars traded up, the Cowboys knew it. But they had to make sure the blockbuster was still on. At that point, the Rams tried to squeeze a little more out of it.
“We didn’t know for sure they’d do the trade,” Stephen Jones said. “Still. All the trades are contingent on getting them done. We called and said, ‘OK, we’ll do it.’ And they tried to sweeten it a little bit. (Laughs). But that wasn’t the deal. And that’s what we did.“