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The Dallas Cowboys Had Tee Martin Graded as a First-Round Quarterback in 2000

Let’s take a quick dive into the history books for just a moment. In mid-April of 2000, former National Championship winning Tennessee quarterback Tee Martin was drafted with the 163rd pick in the 5th round of the NFL Draft. Martin was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers, becoming the ninth Volunteer to be selected in that draft.

Bryan Broaddus, a former NFL scout with the Dallas Cowboys turned afternoon radio co-host on 105.3 The Fan in Dallas, revealed some insight into the Cowboys’ quarterback draft notes that year on Tuesday. As a member of the Cowboys’ scout team at the time, Broaddus had his direct notes from 2022 years ago in hand.

While going through his notes on the “GBag Nation” radio show, Broaddus revealed that the Cowboys had former Tennessee quarterback Tee Martin graded as a low first-round quarterback.

“Real quick, Tee Martin, 1-1-8 as well,” Broaddus said about the grade. “Tee Martin, you remember him from Tennessee, right? National Championship?

“Yeah, yeah, yeah,” host Gavin Dawson replied. “Did what Peyton Manning couldn’t do.”

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The overall radio segment wasn’t about Martin, so his name was just a passing subject during it. However, even the small note does give some fascinating insight as to what was happening at the time.

According to Broaddus during the segment, the grade of “1-1-8” can be broken down into two main parts. The first number, for any player’s grade, is always a one for computer sorting purposes. The second number is the round for which the player is graded for, and the third number is to indicate where they fall inside of the round. A zero would imply the very beginning of the round, while a nine would imply late in the round. Therefore, Martin’s grade lines up to be at the end of the first round.

Twenty-two years later, ultimately, it doesn’t really matter. However, just as a sports historian, it is fascinating to see a first-round grade given for a quarterback that wasn’t taken until the very end of the fifth round. Martin was the fourth quarterback taken in that draft behind Marshall’s Chad Pennington (R1, P18, NYJ), Hofstra’s Giovanni Carmazzi (R3, P65, SF), and Louisville’s Chris Redman (R3, P75, BAL).

In total, nine players from Tennessee were selected into the 2000 NFL Draft:

  • Round 1, Pick 5 – Baltimore – RB Jamal Lewis
  • Round 1, Pick 12 – New York Jets – DE Shaun Ellis
  • Round 2, Pick 41 – Arizona – LB Raynoch Thompson
  • Round 2, Pick 44 – Green Bay – OT Chad Clifton
  • Round 2, Pick 49 – Dallas – DB Dwayne Goodrich
  • Round 2, Pick 51 – Tampa Bay – OG Cosey Coleman
  • Round 2, Pick 57 – Carolina – DB Deon Grant
  • Round 3, Pick 71 – Arizona – DT Darwin Walker
  • Round 5, Pick 163 – Pittsburgh – QB Tee Martin

It is worth noting, though, that there is a small chance that the Dallas Cowboys’ grade was actually a late second-round quarterback. Martin was the third quarterback that was mentioned in the segment behind Pennington and Redmond. Redmond’s grade was a 1-2-8, which would make for a late second-round grade. Going back to the quote from Broaddus, he did say as well, meaning that he could have misspoke with the middle number and actually meant a 1-2-8 grade just like Redmond.

Unwarranted speculation aside, Broaddus did say 1-1-8 the first time around. Which means that although he wasn’t drafted until the 5th round by Pittsburgh, Martin did have a first-round grade from the Dallas Cowboys’ scouting department.

Check out the audio for yourself below.

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