Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Biggest Mistake in Dallas Cowboys History Sent Packing

By Ryan J Lawrence

http://www.associatedcontent.com/art....html? cat=14

Dallas Cuts a Player They Should Have Never Chosen

Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones has made his share of colossal blunders in his efforts at talent acquisition over the years. From the head-scratching selection of Georgia quarterback Quincy Carter in the 2001 NFL Draft - a selection that confused many NFL scouts who had the player pegged as a fourth or fifth round pick - to more recently, his signing of problem-child cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones, the Cowboys' head boss has looked the fool more than once. However, his biggest player personnel mistake tops those two examples by leaps and bounds, and it may very well be the worst error in Dallas Cowboys history. Thankfully, that particular blunder made its way out of Valley Ranch on Tuesday. However, for many, the bad feelings still linger.

In 1998, the Dallas Cowboys were coming off of a disappointing 6-10 season, but there was reason for optimism. After all, the team had won the Super Bowl only two years prior, when they amassed one of the most statistically impressive seasons in the history of the Dallas Cowboys organization. And, the team still had future hall of famers, quarterback, Troy Aikman, wide receiver, Michael Irvin and running back, Emmitt Smith. With the addition of a new head coach and a high first-round draft pick, the Cowboys were poised for a rebound and a run at another title. Adding to the equation was the potential that the team might be lucky enough to see the star receiver from Marshall University fall into their proverbial lap at pick eight of the NFL Draft.

That receiver was future Pro-Bowler Randy Moss who at the time held a less than stellar reputation for poor character. An assortment of off-field incidents did, in fact, lead to the receiver being passed over by the first seven teams in the 1998 draft. Many NFL analysts had foreseen this and had predicted the Cowboys to select Moss and add him to an offense that would have potentially featured four hall of fame skilled position players. However, when it came time for Jerry Jones to pull the trigger on Moss, he opted instead to go with a defensive end from North Carolina named Greg Ellis.

The rest is history. Randy Moss has gone on to catch 843 passes for 13,201 yards and 135 touchdowns, while eleven years later, Dallas has yet to win another playoff game. Greg Ellis, whom the Cowboys chose instead of Moss, was cut on Tuesday, June 3. Though, Ellis did have a somewhat solid - if unspectacular - career at Dallas, he did little to alleviate the bad feelings over Jones' decision to pass on Moss.

Cowboys fans are still haunted by a dream of opposing defenses trying to figure out ways to stop an offense featuring Aikman, Smith, Irvin and Moss. A dream that never came because of the biggest mistake in Dallas Cowboys History.

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