It's one thing to assess a draft-day trade-up based on the picks sacrificed to acquire a particular player. It's quite another to attach names to those picks, and that's exactly what Dallas Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones did this week in detailing the club's move to trade the Nos. 47 and 78 overall picks to the Washington Redskins to move up and draft Boise State defensive end Demarcus Lawrence at No. 34.
"I would say that Ealy was probably our next pick. Sometimes what you read isn't always true, in terms of the (Timmy) Jernigans of the world and people like that -- we really didn't have him in that mix," Jones said Tuesday during a conference call with Cowboys season-ticket holders, per the team's official website. "We really felt like we needed some help at the right end after losing DeMarcus (Ware)."
Ealy would have been available at No. 47, given that he didn't get picked until the Carolina Panthers took him at No. 60 overall. The Panthers also chose Turner at No. 92, well after Dallas' original No. 78 pick.
"We gave up, probably, what would have been a starting-type player ... we probably would have ended up, believe it or not, picking another guard there. There was a guard where we were going to pick there, Trai Turner from LSU, that we liked a lot," Jones said.
Cowboys fans can now tie the NFL careers of Ealy and Turner to that of Lawrence to assess whether the club was better off making the trade for what it considered to be the third-best right defensive end prospect in the draft. And why not? Jones indicated the Cowboys will do the same.
"We'll probably spend a lot of time -- because you like to learn from history -- are we going to be better off with Demarcus Lawrence, which we think we will, Jones said. "Or would we have been better off with Ealy and a guy like Trai Turner as a guard for us."
Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.