By Mike Freeman
ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 01:  Victor Butler #57 of the Dallas Cowboys recovers a fumble against the Chicago Bears at Cowboys Stadium on October 1, 2012 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Victor Butler, who recently signed with the Saints, was the last remaining player from the Cowboys’ 2009 draft. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

DALLAS (CBS SPORTS) — This was the 2009 draft by the Dallas Cowboys: linebacker Jason Williams, offensive lineman Robert Brewster, quarterback Stephen McGee, linebacker Victor Butler, linebacker Brandon Williams, corner DeAngelo Smith, safety Michael Hamlin, kicker David Buehler, safety Stephen Hodge, tight end John Phillips, corner Mike Mickens and wide receiver Manuel Johnson.

That draft, it turns out, was … epic in its awfulness.

That draft is a perfect example, a microcosm, of what happens when a franchise drafts poorly. It can’t be made up for with free-agent signings or coaching. It acts as an anchor on a team.

The Cowboys have had some good drafts since, but one draft — just one — can set back a franchise for years.

ESPNDallas’ Todd Archer tweeted that by Butler leaving Dallas on Thursday to sign with New Orleans, there are now zero players from that draft on the team. Think about that. That’s incredible. It’s not totally unheard of but highly unusual. That draft was only four years ago. Just from the odds, you’d think the Cowboys would luck into one player still on the team now. But none?

The Cowboys had 12 picks, and none turned out to be starters. Seven of those players aren’t even in the NFL any longer, from what I can determine. It seems the most that draft generated were a handful of backups.


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