With Dez Bryant underperforming this year, a fair question exists for Dallas Cowboys fans: Should the team invest its first-round pick in a big-play wide receiver next year?
The Dallas Morning News' Jon Machota answered questions via a live chat Friday and exactly this came up:
Question: I believe wide receiver is a major need. The Cowboy WRs do NOT get separation. Dez is now a possession receiver as are the others. This needs to be addressed for this team to be a true Super Bowl contender. thoughts?
Jon Machota: It's certainly one of their top five needs. Some say it's No. 1. I won't go that far. The defense still needs help at all three levels. I can understand drafting an outside receiver in this upcoming draft, I just wouldn't do it in the first round. That pick, for me, has to again be on defense.
Whatever Machota thinks, the reality exists that Cowboys receivers struggled getting open this season during Ezekiel Elliott's suspension. Bryant is an aging receiver and Terrance Williams and Cole Beasley. Rookie slot receiver Ryan Switzer simply hasn't been given a chance to get on the field too much, but has shown promise in the return game.
While Machota's reasoning has merit, we'll see if Jerry Jones goes impulsive this spring and takes an offensive playmaker. The real answer may be providing more depth at defensive back (specifically safety) and linebacker. With Sean Lee's injury luck, the Cowboys can never have enough healthy, good backers.