Jerry Jones told Aaron Donald, after a steak dinner in Miami on Thursday, he was devastated when the Rams drafted the DT just 3 picks before the Cowboys took Martin in 2014!!!
"First of all, you broke my heart," Jerry told the L.A. superstar at Prime 112 steakhouse in Miami ... "They took him before we could take him!"
Of course, the draft ended up alright for Dallas ... Martin has made SIX Pro Bowls since Jerry drafted him, after losing out on Donald -- but it's pretty clear JJ wanted AD badly!!
"I'm going to tell you something right here," Jerry said, as he took Donald's hand. "You raise your hand to this guy. Now, this is the definition of a War Daddy. This is, 'Be a War Daddy!' right here!"
Jerry's son, Stephen Jones, clearly felt the same way ... 'cause when he grabbed AD at the restaurant, he told his dad, Donald is "the best player in the NFL!"
Don't worry, Rams fans ... Aaron ain't going to bolt for Dallas anytime soon -- he just signed a $135 MILLION contract that's locked him in to Los Angeles for the next half decade!!!
By the way, we also asked Jerry if he'd put Jimmy Johnson in the team's Ring of Honor now that his ex-Cowboys head coach is going into the Hall of Fame ... and all Jerry would tell us is, "Aren't we proud of him in the Hall of Fame?"