Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wants offensive tackle Doug Free to take a pay cut. If Free refuses, he’ll get cut. And yet Jones says that’s not an indication that the two parties are headed for an ugly divorce.
In fact, Jones said today that he likes Free and is optimistic about his future in Dallas.
“I’d like to keep him,” Jones said. “We think that Doug Free can be an important part of the team. He’s been here. We know him. We think that with what we’re doing in other parts of our offense, certainly in the offensive line, that this will bode well for him. So we think he can really be an asset to us.”
Of course, thinking Free can be an asset and thinking Free is worth the $7 million base salary he’s owed this year are two different things. Jones did acknowledge that the $7 million number needs to come down.
“It’s no secret that we’re trying to renegotiate the contract,” Jones said. “But I think it’s a wrong assessment to say that anybody’s saying ‘take it or leave it’ or we’re at our wit’s end or those kinds of things. That’s just not the way I see it going.”
The way it will probably go is that Free will play for the Cowboys this season, for less than $7 million.