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Jerry Jones answers questions about Cowboys' approach to 2022 NFL Draft, Kelvin Joseph investigation

The Cowboys have the 24th pick in Round 1.
Credit: AP
(L to R) Dallas Cowboys COO, Stephen Jones, head coach Mike McCarthy, first round draft pick linebacker Micah Parsons and Owner Jerry Jones speak to the media at the Dallas Cowboys headquarters, Friday, April 30, 2021, in Frisco, Texas. (AP Photo/Brandon Wade)

FRISCO, Texas — Nothing in this world is certain except death, taxes and Jerry Jones' optimism.

The Dallas Cowboys held their annual pre-NFL Draft press conference at Cowboys Headquarters on Tuesday.

Jones, the owner of the world's most valuable sports team, spoke for the majority of the 45-minute session but was atypically guarded when asked about Kelvin Joseph.

"As you know, it’s under investigation," Jones said. "I don’t know any more than what I’ve seen you write. It’s certainly pending. I have no information that affects his status during this time of the year."

The Cowboys second-year cornerback was questioned by police earlier this month regarding a homicide that took place in Dallas on March 18. Police sources told WFAA that Joseph was in the suspects' vehicle at the time of the shooting, but police have not officially specified Joseph's possible involvement in the case.

Joseph was interviewed by homicide detectives at his attorney's office in Dallas.

"He's very active and involved and getting ready for the upcoming season," Jones added, mentioning Joseph's involvement in offseason workouts.

When asked if Joseph's situation impacts the Cowboys draft strategy or amplifies their need to draft cornerbacks early in this weekend's draft, Jones shot back, "No."

Why?

"Because I said so."

The Cowboys hold the 24th pick in the first round. As usual, they will have three options: trade up, trade down or make the pick.

After a tumultuous offseason losing playmakers Amari Cooper, Randy Gregory and La'el Collins, the Cowboys have more questions than answers.

However, Jones' son and Cowboys Vice President Stephen Jones doesn't view one position as an overwhelming need and doesn't see them having "a must" entering this year's draft.

The fact of the matter is: the Cowboys have holes and a lack of depth at multiple positions.

Defensive line, offensive line, linebacker and defensive back are the primary positions of "need" for Days 1 and 2, while wide receiver and tight end warrant consideration on Day 3.

"There are more players with draftable grades than we've ever had," Stephen Jones said, in reference to the talent expected to go in rounds 3-5. Yet, the talent in rounds one and two compared to years past is "a little more thin.”

RELATED: Opinion: Retaining RB Tony Pollard should be a priority for Cowboys

Read the tea leaves and a trade-up in the first (or second) round doesn't sound feasible. In fact, a trade down would make more sense assuming: they're on the clock at No. 24, they have a handful of viable options on their draft board and a team calls them with an offer.

Jerry Jones admitted, since most of the salary cap is tied up with a handful of players (Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, Demarcus Lawrence etc.),  they'll rely heavily on "immediate" performance from players on rookie contracts.

On the bright side, the Cowboys have four picks in the fifth round this year which gives them plenty of options to bolster the roster. In fact, a trade-up early on Day 3 would make sense if there's a prospect they're hyped about.

Then again, there is no way to predict how the draft unfolds. Take 2021, for example.

"We had no idea Micah Parsons would be there when we started that draft," Jerry Jones recalled. "We had our eye on cornerback. The bad thing would've been not to be flexible."

Toward the end of the press conference, Jones said, "There is probably less risk-taking in me” versus his early years with the Cowboys.

"[VP of Player Personnel] Will [McClay] puts the board together," Jones explained. "He doesn't make the call. It's not a one-person decision."

Jerry expressed his desire to empower others in the decision-making process for the sake of accountability.

"Taco [Charlton] was Stephen's call," Jerry joked.

The three-day NFL Draft starts Thursday night in Las Vegas, Nev.

   

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