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Brandt: Cowboys, Johnny Manziel an unlikely match in NFL draft

The idea of Johnny Manziel playing football for his home-state Dallas Cowboys might seem like a made-for-TV match, but the club and the former Heisman Trophy-winning Texas A&M star are an unlikely pairing on multiple fronts, according to NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt.

The Cowboys hold the 16th-overall pick, and reports of the Cowboys being smitten with Manziel have rustled speculation that the match could indeed be made. Brandt, however, doesn't see it, noting that owner Jerry Jones is more interested in immediate success that no rookie quarterback could deliver better than Tony Romo. Brandt, the former Cowboys vice president of player personnel, also doesn't believe Manziel will be available if the Cowboys stay at No. 16, anyway.

Plenty of clubs in much greater need of a quarterback than Dallas pick in the top 10, and Manziel's dazzling athleticism could be too hard to pass on. Plus, the Cowboys have made a strong financial commitment to Romo. And while his age (34) and performance might dictate that Dallas find his successor later in the draft -- Brandt himself has suggested as much -- the first round simply isn't the time to do it.

Adding a first-round talent to the Cowboys' defense would figure to bring more immediate dividends. The defensive options for Dallas could range from safeties Calvin Pryor or Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, to a defensive lineman such as Aaron Donald, or possibly UCLA's Anthony Barr as a pass-rushing defensive end or linebacker.

*Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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