Report: Cowboys will use franchise tag on DeMarcus Lawrence

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The Cowboys haven’t been coy about their plans regarding defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence this offseason.

Lawrence can become an unrestricted free agent on March 14, but the team has made it clear that he won’t be leaving Dallas. Executive vice president Stephen Jones said last month that the team would prefer to make that happen with a long-term contract rather than by using the franchise tag, but it appears the team will be going through door No. 2 with the deadline to use the tag a day away.

Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that talks on a long-term deal have not progressed to a point where an agreement is likely before Tuesday’s deadline. As a result, the Cowboys will use the tag on Lawrence and move forward from there.

The franchise tag for defensive ends is projected to come with a salary of around $17.5 million for the 2018 season. The two sides would have until July 16 to work out a multi-year deal and reports have suggested Lawrence is looking for an average of around $17 million a season.