Have you ever been watching the NFL Draft and just found yourself marvaling at a pick amazed at it’s perfection and seen visions of Super Bowl confedi falling from the ceiling in a stadium as a team hoists a Lombardi Trophy.
Yeah, me too.
Last night, the NFL Draft was as surprising as it has ever been. From the lack of trades early on to the receivers falling farther than most expected. Three quarterbacks were selected in the first six picks, pushing a lot of top-end talent down the board. The first wide receiver in this class didn’t come off of the board until the 12th pick to the Las Vegas Raiders, selecting Henry Ruggs III from Alabama.
At that point, I knew that things could happen.
At fifteen, the Broncos selected Jerry Jeudy, the other receiver in this class from Alabama.
Sitting at sixteen were the Atlanta Falcons. Their draft board was in shambles. I eagerly awaited the trade that would see CeeDee Lamb come off the board. The Falcons weren’t in the market for a receiver, and they stayed pat, taking cornerback AJ Terrell.
Now the Dallas Cowboys were on the clock. I knew it was over. One of the top receivers slipped down the board, arguably the best receiver in this class, and the Cowboys were pulling the trigger. Jerry Jones seemed to be laughing at the rest of the NFL from his yacht, and I knew he was laughing to the bank too.
Why CeeDee Lamb is solid fit in Dallas
Why is this such a solid pick?
The Cowboys just signed their star receiver, Amari Cooper, to a five-year, $100M deal this offseason. That’s a lot of money to give a receiver, even one as good as Cooper. With running back Ezekiel Elliott under a big contract, and the Cowboys trying to get quarterback Dak Prescott under contract, it’s a team running out of cap space to keep their team together, and their offense explosive.
Cooper is an excellent route runner and a very refined talent. He has good hands. That being said, he has struggled to show up on some of the Cowboy’s bigger games, mostly because better defenses understood that if Cooper and Elliott were removed from games, the depth wasn’t there to contest the rest of the defense.
The Cowboys have other weapons on the offense. Michael Gallup has developed a very nice chemistry with Prescott, and Devin Smith played well while Gallup missed time due to injury. Gallup is more of the number two role, playing as a supplementary weapon to support the cast on the team.
By adding Lamb, the Cowboys just got themselves a serious weapon from both the slot and from outside. Lamb’s explosive ability after the catch alone is an upgrade over the guy they had last year, Randall Cobb, and it can change games.
Also: Lamb is on a rookie deal with a fifth year option, so it’s safe to say that Cooper and Lamb will be the receivers on this team for the next four-to-five years.
What CeeDee Lamb brings to the Cowboys
Let’s think about this for a second. Dak Prescott was very much regarded in the way that Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts is being regarded coming out of college. Their playing styles are remarkably similar, as is their ability to extend plays and improvise. If you think about it, so was Kyler Murray, the Oklahoma quarterback the year before.
Their favorite target to throw to while improvising? CeeDee Lamb.
As good as Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup are, they aren’t good at coming off-script and keeping a play alive when Prescott gets out of the pocket. Lamb though? He thrives off-script.
If you look at some of Lamb’s biggest plays over the last couple of seasons, it’s been moving back to the quarterback and giving him another option to place the football. He’s so good at it.
Then, after the catch? Lamb is extraordinary. He plays like a running back in the open field. He can break tackles, he’s fast and can outrun people in the secondary. His field vision is extraordinary.
This is such a good pick.
Will it work?
Will it work?
This is the ultimate question. The Cowboys do have some glaring holes on their defense, holes that they will immediately be looking to fill over the next couple days of the NFL Draft. Everyone has heard the cliche “Defense wins championships” remark made during almost every football game broadcast. If you look at the defending Super Bowl champions, the Kansas City Chiefs, they won by being able to outscore people.
The Cowboys, on paper, are about to have as good of a roster (if not better) on offense as the Chiefs had last season. They have a more than capable quarterback, a top ten running back, and now a receiving corps to boast about.
With Super Bowl Champion XLV head coach Mike McCarthy scheming, this could end up being a franchise-altering selection. This offense hit new levels of success at times last season and produced excellent numbers, and they just got better.
The sky is the limit with the Cowboys.