Many league observers have wondered why the Cowboys haven’t spent much money in free agency. The “Final Eight Plan” only goes so far in explaining the lack of activitity, especially since the Cowboys are in the bottom half of the octet, allowing them to sign at least one player for more than $5.8 million in the first year, and as many as they want for $3.8 million or less in the first year, with 30 percent annual growth.
The bigger reality is that, as we’ve previously mentioned, the Cowboys already have committed plenty of cash to 2010, in the event that 2010 would proceed without a spending cap.
As pointed out in the team-by-team cap list, the Cowboys would lead the league in cap dollars, with more than $153 million already committed in 2010.
But the Cowboys wouldn’t have been forced to dump players en masse if a new labor agreement had been negotiated before March 5. Per a league source, many of the big-money deals contain terms allowing the Cowboys to convert money due in 2010 into guaranteed payments, which would have helped the Cowboys get under the cap by pushing current cap charges into future years.
Anyway, that’s why they aren’t spending big money in 2010. While building their current team, they already have. As a result, owner Jerry Jones will spend well over 10 percent of the full cost of the North Texas Football Cathedral on player costs this year, as he tries to ensure that his team will qualify to play the first Super Bowl hosted in his new stadium.
Then, if a cap returns in 2011, the Cowboys will be able to maneuver more easily because they had pushed a bunch of cash obligations into the uncapped year.