As the Dallas Cowboys continue to rebuild their defense, it appears the team is not ruling out adding to their already-explosive offense in the upcoming draft. ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is “infatuated” with Florida tight end Kyle Pitts. The question is whether Jones’ interest in Pitts would prompt the Cowboys to trade up for the tight end given his rising draft stock.
Mortensen discussed the Cowboys’ interest in Pitts during former NFL general manager Mike Tannenbaum’s mock draft special. The ESPN analyst projected the Cowboys would select Alabama corner Patrick Surtain II, and Mortensen provided a bit of pushback as the insider believes Dallas would run to the podium to snag Pitts.
“Well, I’ll admit that he’s a perfect fit for Dan Quinn the new defensive coordinator’s scheme, Patrick Surtain II that is,” Mortensen explained. “However, we’re hearing this thing about Jerry Jones, the owner of the Cowboys and the GM, being infatuated with Kyle Pitts. So I have figured he’s going have to trade up to get Kyle Pitts. I don’t agree with Mike [Tannenbaum] about where Pitts has fallen here. I think he’ll offer Emmitt Smith and Larry Allen, maybe throw in Michael Irvin. He doesn’t need Tony Romo but he has Dak Prescott, he spent $40 million a year on Dak Prescott so why not go get Kyle Pitts, or if he actually falls to 10, you couldn’t rule him out.”
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The Cowboys Face a Difficult Decision if Pitts Falls to No. 10
The Cowboys are widely projected to select a cornerback at No. 10 as Tannenbaum suggested. If Pitts does slip to No. 10, the Cowboys find themselves in a similar situation as they were last year when CeeDee Lamb dropped well past his projections.
The Cowboys’ defense is clearly the weaker unit, but Pitts’ talent may be too much to pass up even if tight end is not a major need. ESPN’s Todd McShay weighed in on Tannenbaum and Mortensen’s debate adding that the Cowboys are unlikely to have the option to select Pitts unless they trade up.
“Listen, I don’t think Pitts is going to be available even here [No. 10],” McShay responded. “I think he could go No. 4 to Atlanta. I think he could go No. 5 to Cincinnati. He could go No. 6 to Miami. So, those are three landing spots for, I agree with Mel [Kiper], the second-best player in this draft after Trevor Lawrence. If it is corner and if Kyle Pitts is off the board, Surtain makes the most sense because he is plug-and-play ready. He is a really complete player. He’s physical versus the run.”
After his recent pro day, Pitts noted that the Cowboys are one of the teams he has talked with during the pre-draft process. Dallas may need to be aggressive if they want to land the highly-touted tight end.
The Cowboys Could Also Consider Corners Jaycee Horn or Caleb Farley at No. 10
McShay added that there are other corners the Cowboys could consider in addition to Surtain. South Carolina’s Jaycee Horn and Virginia Tech’s Caleb Farley are two other names to watch.
“There are other really good corners in this draft,” McShay added. “Jaycee Horn from South Carolina is the best press-man cover corner. You’ve got Caleb Farley from Virginia Tech who I think is probably the best man-to-man, smoothest mover and great with the ball in the air. But if it’s corner here and Pitts is off the board, I think it’s Surtain who will be the first corner to come off the board here.”