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2020 Draft Rewind: NYG Safety McKinney Irked by Cowboys Opting for CeeDee Lamb

How many times do you stop to think about the fact that Oklahoma WR fell to the 17th pick of the 2020 ? If you're a Cowboys fan, the answer might be pretty often – as the receiver-needy Cowboys paired the draft's best talent with and . However, if you're , this fact might come up more than it should.

In a recent interview with Patrick Peterson and Bryant McFadden on the “All Things Covered” podcast, McKinney did not shy away from telling his defensive back counterparts that he “takes it personal every time I play the Cowboys”.

2020 Draft Rewind: NYG Safety McKinney Irked by Cowboys Opting for CeeDee Lamb
Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

As far as players and coaches wanting to put up their best performance against , McKinney can go ahead and get in line. What makes this example more fun is that McKinney was so often linked to Dallas before the 2020 Draft. Rarely do pair a player with a team as steadily as McKinney was projected to be the pick at 17th overall, despite their of not addressing safety with much priority.

For draft analysts and fans alike, McKinney to the Cowboys made perfect sense. The Alabama product would be an instant improvement to both the team's pass and run as a versatile safety capable of playing deep or in the box.

The Cowboys need for defensive help was perhaps so glaring that fans outside of Dallas forget that WR also remained enough of a need to make passing on a talent like CeeDee Lamb impossible. Like McKinney in 2020, was the popular pick for the Cowboys in 2018 before they opted for LB . They then traded their 2019 first rounder mid-season for Amari Cooper.

Lamb and McKinney's rookie campaigns were both clouded by outside factors that make the East rivals' draft decisions hard to judge just yet. McKinney missed ten games with a foot injury, making his fourth quarter interception of a season highlight. The fact it was Dalton playing into week 17 and not – lost for the season against the Giants in week five – puts an asterisk on Lamb's already solid debut.

McKinney sealing a win against the Cowboys in the season finale earned the Giants an outside chance at the playoffs via a dreadful in 2020. This opportunity disappeared in a game that summed up the division well, as the final primetime game of the year saw the Washington Football Team hold off the /Nate Sudfeld Eagles to clinch the division.

Since missing the playoffs, both teams have done plenty of work at the respective positions opposite Lamb or McKinney. The Giants prioritized adding playmakers for QB , as now has Kenny Golladay, Kelvin Benjamin, Kadarius Toney, and a healthy to call plays for.

The Cowboys current plan at safety includes a new but familiar face for Defensive Coordinator in , along with veteran . The team is also relying on to take the next step after a promising season.

CeeDee Lamb, Vikings

Cowboys personnel themselves would justify passing on McKinney simply by pointing out that safeties are rarely the players that decide a game. Before knowing what they had in Lamb, or even at QB with Dak Prescott's extension being drawn out, a dominant pass is certainly key to today's NFL. When healthy, the Cowboys easily have all the makings of just that.

A healthy Giants defense, with McKinney set to prove a point, will get their first shot at the Cowboys in week five at . If you could redo the 2020 Draft, would the Cowboys pick still be a 935 yard receiver without his starting QB for 11 games in CeeDee Lamb?

Sean Martin
Sean Martin
Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

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