IRVING, Texas (AP) " Whatever excitement the NFL draft lacked on the opening day for the Dallas Cowboys, they sure made up for it on Day 2.
"This is as excited as we've ever been about the draft with the numbers and opportunities that we have," team vice president Stephen Jones said, after Dallas made an NFL-high 12 selections. "To me, this is a lot more interesting process."
For the first time since Jerry Jones bought the team in 1989, the Cowboys did not have a pick in the first two rounds.
That meant Dallas did not make a selection Saturday and had to wait until Sunday before taking Western Illinois linebacker Jason Williams and Ball State offensive tackle Robert Brewster in the third round.
Dallas drafted Texas A&M's Stephen McGee in the fourth round, the first quarterback the team has drafted since taking Quincy Carter in 2001. The Cowboys also nabbed a pair of defensive ends in the fourth, Oregon State's Victor Butler and Texas Tech's Brandon Williams.
"The acquisition of this talent complements what we already have on this team," Jones said.
This is the first time Dallas has gone without a pick in the first two rounds since 1980, when its first pick was in the third round and 78th overall. The Cowboys' longest wait in Jones' tenure before Saturday was 2001, when they drafted Carter at No. 53.
McGee threw for 4,889 yards and rushed for 1,800 more in his first three seasons with the Aggies but made only three starts in 2008 after suffering a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder.
"I really expected to go in the third round," said McGee, who was taken with the first pick of the fourth round. "I had a lot of things happen in my career that I couldn't control. Despite all that, I'm thrilled to go to the Cowboys."
The 6-foot-1, 241-pound Jason Williams was the 69th overall selection after making 17 tackles for losses and forced six fumbles as a senior. The Cowboys took Brewster with the 75th pick after four years at Ball State that included a 12-2 finish last season.
Cowboys coach Wade Phillips said both be converted to outside linebacker.
"It is a new chapter, the next step in life," Brewster said. "I'm ready to go to work and do the same things I did at Ball State."
Brandon Williams, a native of Fort Worth, left school after his junior season. He led the Big 12 with 13 sacks last season and finished his career with 22.5, the fourth most in Texas Tech history.
Butler started just one season in college, but he piled up 22.5 sacks the past two years.
"To make the move, you have to be able to rush the passer," Phillips said. "You have to see enough of them to know if they can make the change at the next level."
The Cowboys added to their secondary depth in the later rounds.
Dallas took Cincinnati defensive back DeAngelo Smith and Clemson safety Michael Hamlin in the fifth, and the Cowboys added TCU safety Stephen Hodge in the sixth and Cincinnati cornerback Mike Mickens in the seventh.
The Cowboys selected USC kicker David Buehler, who said he expects to kick off and play on other return teams, in the fifth round, and Virginia tight end John Phillips in the sixth.
With their final pick of the seventh round, Dallas took Oklahoma receiver Manuel Johnson.
"We had a plan and stuck to that plan," Wade Phillips said. "We feel we can get a lot of production from this group of players even if they weren't picked in the first or second round."
The Cowboys did not have a first-round pick, having dealt that with third- and sixth-round selections to Detroit last season for receiver Roy Williams.
Dallas traded the 51st pick Saturday to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for third- and fourth-round picks " the 75th and 110th selections.
With two more moves Sunday, the Cowboys have made 55 draft-day trades since 1989.