As the draft nears a small wave of support for the Cowboys taking a tight end in the first round has grown. The top targets of interest at the position are Michael Mayer, Darnell Washington, and Dalton Kincaid.
But does spending a first-round pick — and the money that goes with it — on a tight end make sense?
Do the Cowboys even need to worry about the position to begin with? Frankly, no.
If Dallas was concerned about the players they have on the roster — Jake Ferguson and Peyton Hendershot — at the position, they wouldn't have let Dalton Schultz go.
Especially when they could have re-signed him rather cheaply after his free agency market fizzled.
Put me in the camp that thinks there is no way the Cowboys take a tight end this early. But also don't expect me to be shocked if they somehow go ahead and do so.
This is the Jones family we're talking about.
But let's take a look at the pros and cons of spending the 26th pick on Thursday evening on a tight end.
Is there a good reason why one of the three listed above should be on the Cowboys' card?
How It Could Happen
If the skill players at running back and receiver fly off the board early — an unlikely scenario — Dallas would have a tough call to make.
Shore up their offensive or defensive lines, or take a tight end. They'd be tempted to give Dak Prescott another target to throw to.
Mayer is the top-ranked player at the position coming into the draft. He's been nicknamed “Baby Gronk” and is projected to go mid-first round. He could slip back to the Cowboys depending on how other teams draft.
If the goal is to give Prescott another target — and Mayer is gone — Kincaid would be the logical next pick. As a receiver, he checks off all the boxes.
But his Achilles Heel is his blocking, especially in the run game.
So if the Cowboys are looking for a blocking tight end — which you can get in a later round — with the potential to become a threat in the passing game, you're looking at Washington.
But, do you spend a first-round pick on a blocker?
Why It Makes No Sense
The Cowboys have two very good tight ends on the roster already. It isn't a position of need. And there are options available later in the draft.
Taking Tucker Kraft out of South Dakota State in the third or fourth round would be the right play. He was a solid receiver for the Jackrabbits during their National Championship run last year. And he is a solid blocker.
There are a couple of other players who will be available in the middle rounds at the position, freeing Dallas up to address greater needs.
What Will Likely Happen
Sometime late Thursday evening, the Cowboys' draft card will be handed to Roger Goodell.
He will walk up and announce the pick.
It will likely be Bryan Bresee, a defensive tackle from Clemson, or O'Cyrus Torrence, an offensive lineman from Florida. The longshots are: Bijan Robinson (running back, Texas) or Quentin Johnson (receiver, TCU).
But if Goodell says the words “tight end” at any point during Dallas' pick, start reaching for the smelling salts.
I'm going to need as many as I can get to revive me.