After a fair amount of trade talk leading up to the draft, the Dallas Cowboys opted to stay put at 27 on Thursday night and they used that pick on Byron Jones, an ultra-athletic defensive back out of the University of Connecticut.
Jones started his career at UConn as a safety but moved to cornerback in 2013, and flourished there the past two seasons. He’s coming off a shoulder injury that ended his 2014 season after seven games and required surgery, but the year before that he started all 12 games at corner and pulled down three interceptions.
At 6-foot-1, 199 pounds, Jones’ athleticism is unquestioned. At the combine, he recorded a world record 12-foot-3-inch broad jump and a 44.5 inch vertical and, at his pre-draft workout, he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.43 seconds.
In selecting Jones, the Cowboys address a major need in the secondary. Morris Claiborne’s struggles are well documented, $50 million man Brandon Carr is coming off a rough year and Orlando Scandrick--who has been their best corner over the past couple seasons--is currently staying away from Valley Ranch as he hopes for a new deal.
The Cowboys are set to pick 28th in the second round, 60th overall.