News: DMN: Akwasi Owusu-Ansah (who?) over Kam Chancellor? The top Cowboys draft blunders since 2000

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  1. NewsBot

    NewsBot New Member

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    Every NFL team can longingly look through its draft history and wonder what could've been. The Cowboys are no exception.
    Since the turn of the century, Jerry Jones & Co. have made some decisions on draft day that are likely to leave Cowboys fans slapping their foreheads in hindsight.

    With all due respect, we'll let the players from the 2014 and 2015 drafts develop a little more before rushing to any judgments.

    Here's a look at the Cowboys' 14 biggest draft blunders since 2000.

    2001: Tony Dixon over Adrian Wilson

    This might go down as one of the worst drafts in Cowboys history. Most remember the infamous Quincy Carter pick at No. 53, but fewer remember that Alabama S Tony Dixon came to the Cowboys just three picks later. Dixon made 15 starts in five seasons with the Cowboys before being shown the door. The next safety came off the board just eight picks later when the Cardinals took Adrian Wilson, who has been a cornerstone of the Arizona defense ever since. He had nearly 900 career tackles, and five Pro Bowl appearances.

    2003: Terence Newman over Troy Polamalu

    A bowl-game hamstring injury may have scared teams off Polamalu, who went to Pittsburgh in the first round with the 16th overall pick. The Cowboys passed early, taking cornerback Terence Newman with the fifth choice. It's hard to knock Newman's performance with the Cowboys, but Polamalu is an eight-time Pro Bowler, a former Defensive Player of the Year and a member of the NFL's 2000s All-Decade Team.

    2004: Bruce Thornton over Jared Allen

    After going offensive with their first three picks, the Cowboys finally addressed the defense by taking Thornton, a CB out of Georgia, in the fourth round. But he made just one appearance with the Cowboys and lasted only two years in the NFL.

    The Vikings snagged Allen five picks later, while the Cowboys, who were still playing in a 4-3 base defense at the time, stuck with a 29-year-old Greg Ellis and a 30-year-old Marcellus Wiley as their DEs. Now, Allen finished his 13-year career with 136 sacks and five Pro Bowls.

    2006: Bobby Carpenter over Tamba Hali

    Bobby Carpenter, the 18th overall pick in 2006, might qualify as the worst of the Cowboys' first-round picks in this century. He was ill-equipped to play inside linebacker as planned and had only three starts in four years with the Cowboys. Hali went to Kansas City two picks later.

    His career? Well, he's racked up 89.5 sacks played in five straight Pro Bowl trips. He's also played in 172 of a possible 176 games in his career.

    2006: Anthony Fasano over Devin Hester

    Fasano, No. 53 overall, was a Bill Parcells pick all the way. He was supposed to fill a substantial role as an H-back, but Fasano made all of 28 catches in two years before the Cowboys shipped him to Miami. Hester, who went just four picks later to the Bears, is the most electric return man in NFL history and has had an underrated career as a receiver, too. To add insult to injury, the Cowboys tried to draft a kick returner two rounds later -- LSU's Skyler Green -- but he didn't even make the team.

    2006: Skyler Green over Elvis Dumervil

    The Cowboys took Green out of LSU 125th overall, hoping he could be a deep threat at receiver and a star as a kick returner. Dumervil, who was tremendously productive in college but was thought to be undersized, went to Denver with the very next pick. He's accrued 99 sacks since joining the league in 2006 while Green couldn't even make the Cowboys' roster in preseason.

    2007: James Marten over Marshal Yanda

    Looking to add depth to their offensive line, the Cowboys picked tackle James Marten from Boston College with the 67th overall pick in '07. He never appeared in a game with the Cowboys, and made all of one appearance in a three-year NFL career. Later in the third round, Baltimore took Iowa tackle Marshal Yanda No. 86 overall. The Ravens moved Yanda inside to guard, where he's become one of the NFL's best. Yanda is a stalwart on the Baltimore line and has earned trips to six straight Pro Bowls.

    2008: Felix Jones over Chris Johnson

    In '08, the Cowboys wanted a running back to complement Marion Barber's bruising style, so they used the 22nd overall pick on Arkansas' Felix Jones. But Johnson, who flew up draft boards after a blistering performance at the NFL combine, went two picks later to Tennessee. In nine years, Johnson has 9,537 career rushing yards and an NFL rushing title.

    Jones had just 2,912 career yards in five years with the Cowboys, and has never broken the 1,000-yard barrier.

    2008: Martellus Bennett over Jamaal Charles

    In 2008, the Cowboys wanted more weapons to plug into then-OC Jason Garrett's gameplan. With the 61st pick, the Cowboys opted for Bennett, who never had more than 283 receiving yards in a season and didn't account for a TD in his final three years in Dallas.

    Twelve picks later, the Chiefs landed Charles, a three-time Pro Bowl running back who's averaging 5.5 yards per carry for his career. And while we could point out that the Cowboys had already picked a RB in this draft (Felix Jones in the 1st), Dallas used its very next pick on another back -- Tashard Choice -- anyway, so Charles doesn't seem like a ridiculous choice.

    2008: Mike Jenkins over Brandon Carr

    The 2008 draft wasn't strong for Dallas. The best pick out of the whole group was probably cornerback Orlando Scandrick (at 143rd overall). The first cornerback taken in this draft by Dallas was Mike Jenkins. He lasted just five years in Dallas notching 147 tackles in 71 games. He showed promise during his second when he made the Pro Bowl, but didn't live up to the hype of being a first-round pick.

    Brandon Carr, who went 140th overall in the same draft, provided some real value for Kansas City in his four years with the Chiefs. In nine years he's never missed a game in his career and has 111 career pass deflections. Jenkins had just 54.

    2010: Akwasi Owusu-Ansah over Kam Chancellor

    The Cowboys drafted Owusu-Ansah, a cornerback out of Division II Indiana University of Pennsylvania, in the fourth round as they hoped to bolster their secondary depth. Owusu-Ansah played in just 10 games as a return man with the Cowboys before he was cut.

    Seven picks later the Seahawks took Chancellor, a safety out of the more established Virginia Tech. Chancellor has been a starter for the Seahawks for the past seven seasons and has been named to the Pro Bowl four times.

    2011: Josh Thomas over Richard Sherman

    The Cowboys selected Thomas in the fifth round. He never played a game for Dallas. In that same round, Seattle chose Sherman, who was a mainstay on Seattle's Legion of Boom defense that helped the Seahawks win a Super Bowl and appear in another. Sherman has played in every Seahawks game since he entered the league, and he's been named to the Pro Bowl four years straight.

    2012: Morris Claiborne over Luke Kuechly

    Dallas traded up from No. 14 to select Claiborne at No. 6 overall. While Claiborne has had an up-and-down career, Kuechly, whom the Panthers took three spots later, has been a Pro Bowler and a first-team All Pro in each of the last four years. He also helped lead Carolina to the Super Bowl after the 2016 season.

    2013: Gavin Escobar over Le'Veon Bell

    The Cowboys were searching for another offensive weapon in 2013 when they took Escobar in the hopes he'd eventually be Jason Witten's replacement. That hasn't worked out too well, as he's managed just 333 receiving yards and eight touchdowns in his first four seasons.

    Bell went with the next pick and has been one of the most dynamic players in all of football (when he's not suspended). In just four seasons (a total of 47 games) he has 6,050 yards from scrimmage and 31 touchdowns.

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