FRISCO - The Dallas Cowboys are expected to draft No. 10 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, based on the results of Sunday’s games in Week 17.
The draft is set for April 29 through May 1 and is expected to be held in Cleveland. The 2020 NFL Draft was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Cowboys have never selected No. 10 overall in the NFL Draft. This will also mark the first time the Cowboys have picked in the Top 10 since the 2016 NFL Draft, when the Cowboys selected running back Ezekiel Elliott No. 4 overall.
Entering Sunday, tankathon.com had the Cowboys at No. 11, with the opportunity to move up as high as No. 7 and to move as low as No. 15, depending on the results of the teams in front of them at 5-11 and tied with them at 6-10.
One of those 5-10 teams was the New York Giants, and when the Giants defeated the Cowboys, 23-19, that meant the Cowboys moved up to No. 10 overall. Even though the two teams finished with the same 6-10 record, the Giants’ strength of schedule was better than the Cowboys’, which is the tiebreaker after overall record, and ensured the Cowboys moved ahead of the Giants. San Francisco also finished 6-10, but like the Giants, they had a better strength of schedule than Dallas and finished 6-10.
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After the game ended, the Cowboys were at the mercy of the remaining 5-10 teams, and none of them cooperated.
The Lions fell to the Vikings, 37-35, ensuring the Lions would finish 5-11 and ahead of the Cowboys in the draft order. Then the Panthers fell hard to the Saints, 33-7, ensuring they would remain ahead of the Cowboys in the draft order at 5-11. The Broncos then played the Raiders down to the wire, but the Raiders won the game, 32-31, on a two-point conversion with 24 seconds left. So the Broncos finished 5-11 as well.
Going into Week 17, Jacksonville Jaguars were already locked for the No. 1 selection, while the New York Jets were locked in at No. 2.
The complete NFL Draft order will be finalized after the Super Bowl.