It’s no secret that the Dallas Cowboys lost some big names in last year’s free agency. Obviously, losing DeMarco Murray was the biggest name. But it should be said that the Cowboys also lost Jermey Parnell, Bruce Carter, Henry Melton, Justin Durant, and Dwayne Harris in free agency. Here’s a table of what compensatory draft picks a team receives regarding contract value:
|3rd-round pick||$8 million +|
|4th-round pick||$5.5 million|
|5th-round pick||$4.2 million|
|6th-round pick||$2.5 million|
|7th-round pick||$1 million|
Now let’s look at a table that will compare the departed free agent’s salaries and which compensatory draft pick the Cowboys will likely receive:
|DeMarco Murray||3rd-round pick||$8.4 million|
|Jermey Parnell||4th-round pick||$6.4 million|
|Bruce Carter||5th-round pick||$4.3 million|
|Henry Melton||6th-round pick||$3.75 million|
|Justin Durant||6th-round pick||$3.6 million|
|Dwayne Harris||6th-round pick||$3.5 million|
|George Selvie||7th-round pick||$1.4 million|
Obviously, if the Cowboys go out and spend quality money in free agency, then they will lose a couple if not all of their projected compensatory picks. However, the signing of Greg Hardy cancels out Murray’s compensated draft pick, the signing of Andrew Gachkar cancels out Harris’ compensated draft pick, and the signing of Darren McFadden cancels out Selvie’s compensated draft pick. With all of this being said, the Cowboys will be awarded an extra 4th-round pick and three extra 6th-round picks.
In today’s NFL, where cap space isn’t at a premium, teams have to win through the draft. The Seattle Seahawks are a prime example of a team that has successfully built themselves through the draft as well as sustaining themselves through the draft.
Over the past few years, the Cowboys have built themselves up for success for awhile. Players like Dez Bryant, Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, La’el Collins, Travis Frederick, Demarcus Lawrence, Tyrone Crawford, Sean Lee, and Byron Jones have all been drafted over the past five years, the exception being Collins, who would’ve been a first-round pick if he weren’t a wrongfully-accused suspect in the murder of his ex-girlfriend.
With more draft picks this year, the Cowboys will have a chance to not only win in 2016, but also set themselves up for success for the future as well. Will McClay, the man behind the Cowboys’ scouting department, will have himself some options to work with in April’s draft.