According to the Star-Telegraph, Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said he expects players drafted in the first three rounds to be starters. Not necessarily Day 1 starters, but soon.
“Day 1 starters? You can’t say that. Nobody can say that, but at some point in their careers, you would like to think that they’re a starter, and the sooner the better,” Garrett said Wednesday at Valley Ranch, a day before the Cowboys were scheduled to pick 14th in the first round of the NFL draft.
Calvin Watkins posted the following ESPN mock draft picks for the Cowboys:
Mark Barron, Alabama, S, first round.
Janoris Jenkins, Alabama, CB, second round.
Joe Adams, Arkansas, WR, third round
Akiem Hicks, Regina (Canada), DT, fourth round
James Hanna, Oklahoma, TE, fourth round
Senio Kelemete, Washington, fifth round
Chris Rainey, Florida, RB, sixth round
Tim Fugger, Vanderbilt, OLB, seventh round
Jason Garrett’s attendance at Alabama’s pro day instantly increased speculation that the Cowboys would pick safety Mark Barron, outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw or cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick in the first round.
All indications are that the Cowboys would be extremely pleased if Barron is still on the board when they get on the clock with the 14th overall pick.
There are no new talks involving the team and outside linebacker Anthony Spencer. He signed his $8.8 million franchise tag Monday and reported to the voluntary workouts at Valley Ranch. However, team executive vice president Stephen Jones did say of any contract talks, ” No, but they can happen fast.”
Running back DeMarco Murray (ankle) and wide receiver Raymond Radway (leg) are progressing in their recovery from surgeries. Coach Jason Garrett said he expects to see Murray and Radway work out with the team for the veteran minicamps in June, though it hasn’t been determined if those two players will be limited in any way.
In the last two drafts, the Cowboys picked up starters from the first round in Dez Bryant (2010) and Tyron Smith (2011). Sean Lee (second-round pick in 2010) moved into the starting lineup last season and Bruce Carter (2011 second rounder) is expected to compete for a starting role this year. Can it happen again? “But your expectations are certainly first-and second-round players are starters for you sooner rather than later,” Garrett said.
Nice retirement ceremony for tackle Marc Colombo on Wednesday. He rarely spoke with reporters but was polite and always had time to talk Red Sox and Celtics. “He’s inspirational,” Garrett said, adding later, “A damn good football player.” You hope a similar thing can be done for former center Andre Gurode and inside linebacker Bradie James whenever they decide to retire, if they want to retire as Cowboys, which was the case for Colombo.
Tom Ciskowski, assistant director of player personnel, said the Cowboys don’t have any holes and when asked to expound on it said, “Well, I look at our team and what we’re hopefully going to draft over the next three days to upgrade, like I mentioned earlier. But we’ve got some depth at some positions and I just think even we’re not drafting today we can go play tomorrow. And I think Jerry [Jones] alluded to that that we’re just going to try and find the best football players that we can regardless of the position to help us.”