Will Mock Drafters get the Donald pick completely wrong?

If you were the Cowboys GM, which defensive player would you draft in the 1st round? Are you sold on a player like Aaron Donald, or would you rather get a defensive end, or perhaps a defensive back?  Aaron Donald is the hot pick for Dallas in most mock drafts, and if history is any indicator you may want to have another prospect to get enamored over. Mock drafts are more of an art than a science. The last time mock drafts were pretty close on our draft pick was in 2011 when we drafted Tyron Smith and in 2006 when we drafted Bobby Carpenter. Everything in between has been a guessing game, especially with Jerry moving around in the 1st round.

Take a look at our previous 1st selections:

2013 Travis Frederick, C/OG, Wisconsin
2012 Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
2011 Tyron Smith, OT, USC
2010 Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
2009 Jason Williams, LB, Western Illinois
2008 Felix Jones, RB, Arkansas
2007 Anthony Spencer, DE, Purdue
2006 Bobby Carpenter, LB, Ohio State
2005 Demarcus Ware, DE, Troy

Starting with DeMarcus Ware, not many had him going to Dallas in 2005, when he was drafted, it was almost a head scratcher. I mean, who comes from a smaller school like Troy and gets drafted high by the Cowboys? No one saw it. Thankfully we got a HOF franchise player.

Bobby Carpenter was penciled in from the get go, and remained a favorite through mock draft season. This was a bust.

Anthony Spencer was another surprise pick, when the pick came in it was another head scratcher. Who? Spencer has had some production, but inconsistent play and injuries have hounded him throughout his career. Not many, if anyone at all had him projected to us.

Felix Jones was somewhat of a surprise pick at #22, we already had a running back, so this was clearly a luxury pick and in the end it absolutely did not work out. He was a bust.

Jason Williams was the first pick that didn’t come until the 3rd round, and this was baffling, and the pick just headlined the infamously doomed-out 2009 draft class. A small school player, who had a vertical jump… horrible pick. Again, no one saw this pick coming.

Dez Bryant was slightly mocked in a few mock drafts, but not many. His name gained some attachment down the stretch, but not alot since we had Roy Williams and Miles Austin. Jerry traded up and for the most part this was an exciting draft pick. Fast forward to present day and Dez is a bonafide franchise player.

Tyron Smith was the other pick that was attached to Dallas from the jump and never looked back. Most mockers got this pick right. Dallas was picking high and we needed help at tackle with Colombo struggling, so the pick made the most sense. Tyron got work in at RT his rookie year as Colombo’s replacement and he is now considered an elite LT in the NFL.

Morris Claiborne was attached on a few mock drafts, but the hot name during this draft was Mark Barron, S, Alabama. There were smoke screens and rumors that Barron was going to be the pick – he was not. Dallas leapfrogged several teams to pick up Claiborne. Not many saw this pick either, considering we had Newman and Jenkins at corner. Claiborne is a question mark right now going into the 2014 season. He has not lived up to the high pick thus far. We’ll see if he can bounce back and get on level with Patrick Peterson – he needs to be.

Travis Frederick was not mocked by anyone, and no one predicted the Cowboys would trade all the way down to the 31st pick and draft a center of all things. Most mocks had us targeting a guard, but never a center. Luckily, Frederick proved a lot of draft day doubters wrong and he is now the anchor of the offensive line.

2014 is either going to go two ways: It’ll be like 2006 or 2011, in which the consensus pick actually gets drafted. Where fantasy becomes a reality. Or it could be like all the other drafts and we see a curveball of some sort or we draft a player no one even had on the radar.

Vote on who you like at #16. Do you like Donald and hope the projection sticks, or would you rather take someone else?

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