Injury #3: Jerry selects “Failure” as his #1 pick
Following Jimmy’s departure in February 1994 the Cowboys’ draft was Jerry’s to run. As general manager Jerry felt the need to prove himself as a draft guru. He invited cameras into the draft room and famously picked up the phone to look busy any time he was aware that ESPN’s cameras were rolling. Despite looking the part, Jerry’s drafts between the Jimmy Johnson and Bill Parcells eras were train wrecks. Jerry’s selections proved he lacked an eye for both football talent and off-field character.
In the 1994 draft, his first without Jimmy, Jerry drafted Shante Carver, a defensive end out of Arizona State, in the first round. Carver lasted only four years in the league and amassed a mere 11 1/2 sacks for his career. Not to be outdone, Jones drafted Sherman Williams, a running back out of Alabama, as the Cowboys’ first pick (2nd round) in 1995. Williams played only five years in the NFL averaging only 290 yards a season and was later sentenced to seven years in prison for marijuana distribution and counterfeiting.
In 1996 Jones selected defensive end Kavika Pittman with the Cowboys’ first pick. An average player at best, Pittman played only four years with the Cowboys and averaged a paltry 2 1/2 sacks a season. Tight end David LeFleur was the first round selection in 1997, and he played only three years in the league. Between 1999 and 2001 Jones’ three first picks yielded Ebenezer Ekuban (five average years with the team), Dwayne Goodrich (three pedestrian years with the team before being convicted of criminally negligent homicide), and Quincy Carter (three tumultuous years in the NFL derailed due to drug use).
General managers, above all else, are responsible for drafting the future of the organization – something Jerry Jones has failed at miserably. Jones would have long ago been relieved of his duties of general manager for his draft results had anyone other than himself been signing his paycheck.