Cowboys consider cutting Doug Free, signing Tyson Clabo


The Cowboys want starting right tackle Doug Free to take a pay cut. If he won’t, free agent Tyson Clabo may take his job.

Free’s $7 million base salary is more than the Cowboys are willing to pay this season, so he’s either going to take a pay cut or get cut. And according to Todd Archer of, Clabo has a lot of fans inside the Cowboys’ headquarters. So if Free does get cut, Clabo would likely be the guy to take his place.

Clabo and Eric Winston are the two offensive tackles on PFT’s All-Unemployed Team, and Archer reports that the Cowboys like Clabo better than Winston. The Cowboys also believe that Winston will ask for more money than Clabo.

So either Clabo will be the Cowboys’ starting right tackle this season, or Clabo will be the guy the Cowboys use to squeeze Free into taking a pay cut.

31 responses to “Cowboys consider cutting Doug Free, signing Tyson Clabo

  1. Why does it have to be either or? Why can’t it be getting Clabo and reducing Free’s salary? He can just be a backup….I mean who else is going to give him a job?

  2. Cowboys won’t cut Free before June 1st, and maybe not even then.

    Cutting free costs $10M in dead money cap space, which after 1st can be spread between this year and next. And this is also the problem with replacing Free.

    Between the dead money hit for cutting Free and Clabo’s (or Eric Winston’s) 2013 salary, you’re almost at Free’s cap number. I suspect the Cowboys will eventually propose cutting Free’s base to $5M or $5.5M and Free will accept it, considering he wouldn’t likely get that on the open market.

    However, if the Cowboys get greedy and ask for a deeper salary cut, Free can and should refuse. Free can probably find work at $3M anywhere. There’s no reason he should voluntarily take that big a hit just to stay in Dallas.

  3. 123makarov says:
    May 3, 2013 8:03 PM
    Cowboys won’t cut Free before June 1st, and maybe not even then.

    The Cowboys can cut him now with a post-June 1 designation. There is no need to wait till June 1st.

  4. I don’t see the hub-bub, Clabo is not exactly the best right tackle in the game. He is adequate but I don’t remember him stopping a lot of NFC East DE’s from saying “Hi” to Matt Ryan. I still think Clabo will struggle in this division.

  5. @123makarov

    you are really wrong on this one, if the cowboys designate Free a June 1st cut they save 5 million this year so if they get the decision before then they can pay for clabo and likely have an extra amount of money to help with next years cap issues

  6. If the had the most important fan (Jerrah Jones), he’d be signed and Free would be gone. They’re posturing, hoping Free re-negotiates his salary closer to a 2M cap hit.

  7. best case scenario … free takes steep pay cut (he plays well) or we cut him n sign clabo/winston for cheap (they play well) and we sign richard seymour….. (he plays well)… lol

  8. If Winston can’t find work asking for $3-4m per season then what makes you think Free, who graded out as one of the worst tackles in the league, can? Cowboys wouldn’t be greedy asking for a deeper pay cut, they would be smart. Free would be lucky to land anything more than the veteran minimum on the open market.

  9. once again another great move on behave of jerry. keep up the great stupidity up cowboys. FROM YOUR NFC EAST DIVISION CHAMPIONS WASHINGTON REDSKINS.!!!!!!!!!!

  10. 123makarov says:
    May 3, 2013 8:03 PM
    Cowboys won’t cut Free before June 1st, and maybe not even then.
    They can cut him whenever they want, and just designate him as a post 6/1 cut.

    He should be lucky the cowboys are even giving him an option after his mediocre season.

    You think he can get a job anywhere at 3M? i would be surprised if anyone gave him 3M on the open market. He should just take the reduction and sit on the bench.

  11. Kind of ironic that a man named Free is costing the team $7 million in base salary.

  12. ^^^^^^Is Winston and Clano can’t get $3 million why would you think Free could?! Free is deaf in his left ear making his timing off the ball from the right tackle position the root of his failure. That’s why he played better at left tackle in his contract year.

  13. It’s a game of chicken. 123’s assessment above is about right. Both sides have some leverage and they will likely settle on a base of around $5M

  14. Please the man upstairs let this happen! Doug Free plays with his eyes closed I swear. We should cut him regardless of a pay cut. Clabo is a proven Tackle. Him and Tyron Smith on the outside will go a long way towards shoring up this offensive line. We should cut Free regardless of the cap hit. He really is that bad

  15. What is there to even think about? Sign Clabo. Free played terrible but he is 29 years old so I’m sure someone will take a chance on him though. And we are they letting this drag out? Tell him a decision needs to be made in X amount of days…offer him around $3.5 million (if feeling generous)…take it or leave it. I don’t want to see Free starting but could understand keeping him around for depth.

  16. @pesh00

    Because odds are Free won’t take a pay cut,so therefore Clabo is the second option if Free doesn’t reduce his salary. My guess is also Clabo won’t ask for $7 mil a year,so he’ll be a cheaper and better option.

  17. Free isn’t stupid. Or maybe it’s his agent. If he takes a pay cut now, the Cowboys could still cut him and lessen the hit on the cap.

    Free may just continue to stand pat. There is no incentive for him to take a pay cut and fund his replacement.

  18. They need to cut Free on June 1st, and sign either Clabo or Winston. I understand about the dead money, however Free has played like a bum ever since he signed his new contract and he is going to get Romo killed. It is ridiculous to me to pay Free and Parnell to play one position and Clabo is better than both these guys.

  19. I love ow they say take pay cut. Then they will release him after he reduces the pay. I would take the pay cut as long as it 5 mill all guaranteed

  20. Just another example of why the Cowboys would be better served if they hired a real GM.

    Don’t get me wrong, the entertainment value of watching Jerry Jones shoot himself in the foot time after time is priceless, but think of what the Cowboys could do if they had just a small dose of professionalism.

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