In just 23 days, the newest member of the Dallas Cowboys will join the team with the fourth overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. You can probably already feel the suspense, as the Tennessee Titans will start things off with the first overall pick.
The Browns and the Chargers will then make their selections, and before you know it our Dallas Cowboys will be on the clock. While we have plenty of draft news for you here on Inside the Star that relates to current prospects that are in play for that first round pick, the purpose of this Cowboys on the Clock series it to look back at draft history for the Cowboys.
Being 23 days away from draft time, we continue today with the most recent 23rd overall pick the Cowboys have drafted, a defensive end out of Arizona State:
Carver had a very decorated career at Arizona State University, that did not go without it’s low points. He was dismissed from the school after his sophomore season due to academic reasons, but was later reinstated as a student athlete.
A three year starter, he terrorized opposing backfields from the defensive end position to the tune of double digit sacks in each year. “Shante’s Inferno” led the team in tackles and tackles for loss along with sacks. His 10 sacks during his senior season gave him the career record at ASU, which was later broken by now Baltimore Raven Terrell Suggs.
The Cowboys moved up in the 1994 draft for Carver, searching for their future replacements to the likes of Charles Haley and Tony Tolbert.
Carver would get a chance to start a string of games late in his second season, after playing in just 7 games in 1994, when Haley was sidelined with an injury. While he wasn’t overly productive, Carver did what was asked of him all the way up until Super Bowl XXX – where he recorded a then career high 5 tackles. In a game that would make me a Cowboys fan for life, Dallas won 27-17.
Shante would play two more seasons in Dallas, but was suspended for 6 games after the Super Bowl win in 1996. He would then lead the team in sacks during the 1997 season, his last in the NFL, with six.
After some time off from football Carver would wind up in the CFL with the BC Lions, but was released before the 2000 season. He then came back to the United States to play football in 2001 for the Memphis Maniax of the XFL.
The league folded after Carver’s one solid season in Memphis, and he would once again extend his playing career by joining the AFL until 2004. Playing for Jerry Jones once again, who owned the Dallas Desperados, he won all-rookie honors from the league in his first of four seasons.
The following players have also been drafted by the Dallas Cowboys with the 23rd overall pick:
Duane Thomas, RB, 1970
Thomas would play his rookie season in Dallas in 1970, and despite not taking over the starting job until the fifth game of the season, he rushed for 803 yards won and the rookie of the year. Contract disputes caused him to never report to training camp the following season, and he was traded to the Patriots. In 1976, he was signed for a comeback by Dallas, but was cut before the season ever began.
Jim Jeffcoat, DE, 1983
Jeffcoat had a very productive 12 year run in Dallas, as the defensive end out of New Jersey (who also played his college football at Arizona State) never missed a game during his Cowboys’ career.
When he left in free agency in 1995, he was the franchise’s career sacks leader with 94 and a half. His most productive year came in 1986, when he led the team with 14 sacks.