The Cowboys made Jalen Ramsey believe they’d draft him in 2016 before switching gears and taking Ezekiel Elliott instead.
The Cowboys franchise had a bit of a sliding doors moment in the 2016 NFL Draft according to Jalen Ramsey.
Picking No. 4 overall, Dallas watched the Rams pick Jared Goff, the Eagles get Carson Wentz and the Chargers grab Joey Bosa at No. 3.
From Ramsey’s perspective, that meant he’d be a Cowboy.
Cowboys told Jalen Ramsey they’d draft him, then didn’t
“When I was on my visit to Dallas, they told me straight up to my face, ‘If you’re there at four, we’re taking you,’” Ramsey said on Ryan Clark’s The Pivot Podcast. “‘But we don’t think you’re gonna be there at four.’ They said, ‘We think [the Chargers] are gonna get you at three, but if you’re there at four, if you’re on that board we’re taking you.’”
That turned out to be less than true.
Instead, Jerry Jones and company picked running back Ezekiel Elliott and left the Jaguars to take Ramsey at No. 5.
From the Cowboys’ point of view, that selection worked out just fine. Elliott is a three-time Pro Bowler with 7,386 yards and 56 touchdowns in his six seasons with the team.
However, Ramsey has been arguably more successful. He’s a five-time Pro Bowler, a three-time All-Pro and now a Super Bowl winner with the Rams.
He may have been a Cowboys fan growing up, but Ramsey has done just fine for himself even if he didn’t get to play for his boyhood team.
Would he have made more of a difference for the Dallas defense over the last six years than Elliott has done on offense? That’s a debate that probably won’t have a definitive answer even if it is a fascinating “what if?” to consider.