There is no more important position in football than quarterback. Whether the offense is on the pass-heavy side of things or more run-heavy, no position carries more potential impact than the quarterback. This is especially true on the Cowboys, with the passing offense doing away with the running offense in the Dak Prescott era (both in EPA and success rate).
After testing the market in free agency, back-up quarterback Cooper Rush has signed a 2-year deal to remain in Dallas. Even with Rush and Will Grier under contract, the Cowboys still have an open chair or two in the quarterback room. Dallas has expressed a desire to add one in this draft cycle and head coach Mike McCarthy has already shown his willingness to try and develop the club in the failed Ben Dinucci experiment.
What are the chances that Dallas actually drafts a rookie quarterback this season?
The first thing to note is that McCarthy is a quarterbacks coach. Not only was the quarterback position once his specialty, but it is a position he has leaned on throughout his career to run his West Coast brand offense.
Even when his quarterback room appears to be full, McCarthy is fully prepared to invest more draft capital at all-important positions.
From 2012–2022 the Cowboys have drafted exactly two quarterbacks: Dak Prescott (2016) and Ben Dinucci (2020).
From 2006 to 2018 (McCarthy’s years as head coach in Green Bay), McCarthy’s Packers drafted five quarterbacks: Brett Hundley (2015), BJ Coleman (2012), Brian Brohm (2008), Matt Flynn ( 2008) and Ingle Martin (2006). ,
Some interesting observations from both lists:
- Six of the seven quarterbacks were drafted in the last part of their respective drafts.
- Three of the five McCarthy draftees drafted to Green Bay were selected before Aaron Rodgers was the established starter.
- It’s Hard To Find A Franchise Quarterback Outside The First Round
Given the importance of the position in the modern NFL, one would think that over the years the spot would have received more attention. Clearly, both teams took a more proactive approach to the situation when QB1’s future was up in the air.
Such is not the case in Dallas today.
Still, Prescott is locked in for only two more seasons and the Cowboys have given up their ability to tag him again. It is expected that they can retain him beyond the 2024 season but it is hardly a guarantee.
Additionally, football is a physical sport and Prescott has not played five or more games in two of his last three seasons. Having an extra option behind Prescott and Rush fulfills short term as well as long term needs.
Jerry Jones had discussed this topic earlier in the off-season and explicitly stated that the Cowboys were “committed to drafting a QB.”
Jerry Jones said the Cowboys are “committed to drafting a QB” and Mike McCarthy will be calling the plays next season, per @calvinwatkins pic.twitter.com/T02dDHxaB4
— Action Network NFL (@ActionNetNFL) February 1, 2023
While Dallas is unlikely to use their top picks on a signal caller this draft cycle, it would be surprising if they don’t pick a quarterback later, with only Rush and Grier considered as depth in the current room and both Players may already have them. Maximized your potential.
On the other side of things, the urgency has diminished with the re-signing of Rush, so it’s possible the Cowboys won’t force the issue in the draft and instead settle on a rookie free agent.
History shows they won’t hold a draft unless the right player falls through because neither side has been overly keen on years when they feel confident in their existing veteran signal caller.