Cowboys are going to have some tough business decisions to make

Getty Images

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones repeatedly has said that he would pay a huge amount of money to guarantee a Super Bowl. He will eventually end up paying huge amounts of money with no guarantee that he’ll ever win anything.

Between the promised contract extension for quarterback Dak Prescott, the second contract to be given to receiver Amari Cooper, and the looming second franchise tag for defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, the Cowboys will encounter major financial obligations in the not-too-distant future. Lawrence will make $20.5 million in 2019, if tagged again. And if a long-term deal will be negotiated for Lawrence, $20.5 million for 2019 and an even higher number for 2020 fully guaranteed at signing will be the starting point.

Then there’s running back Ezekiel Elliott. Like Prescott, Elliott is eligible for a second contract after the completion of the 2018 regular season. Unlike Prescott, neither Jerry nor Stephen Jones have said much if anything about Elliott getting a new deal.

Given that Elliott was a first-round pick (and Prescott wasn’t), the Cowboys will face a more urgent situation with their quarterback, who will be eligible for free agency after 2019. Elliott has two years before the Cowboys would face a franchise-tag dilemma.

As PFT’s Charean Williams suggested during Thursday’s PFT Live, it’s possible that the Cowboys won’t ever make a major financial commitment to Elliott, given that running backs tend to burn more brightly for a much shorter time. The Cowboys, after all, let DeMarco Murray leave as a free agent after setting a single-season franchise record with 1,845 yards in 2014.

Maybe the Cowboys will squat on Elliott for the full five years of his rookie deal and then tag him once or twice before letting him leave, reloading at the position with another cheap first-rounder. However it plays out, the Cowboys soon will be spending plenty of money to keep key players around, which could make it harder to have the kind of depth that every team needs.

18 responses to “Cowboys are going to have some tough business decisions to make

  1. Better pay Dak all that money and extend JG. Get it done Jerry. Don’t worry about Zeke you can win w/o him. 🙂

  2. Id sign Zeke and Elliot to competitive deals. Fair market value. Then I would explain to them Im going to use the difference from what they should be getting to solidify the offensive line long term.

    They are losing key pieces every year as that line gets poached. Develop and draft but you need to retain their services.

    Ah well easy to say from here… Jerry give me a chance! Lol

  3. This is the same quandary that all teams will or have faced in the salary cap era. Especially when teams have drafted fairly well, as the Cowboys have recently. It seems like you can change out the Cowboys with any other team and come up with some business decisions will be tough for almost any front office.

  4. .
    Just being a great personnel guy is not enough in today’s NFL. Astute cap management is an absolute necessity for long term success.
    .

  5. He will eventually end up paying huge amounts of money with no guarantee that he’ll ever win anything.
    =============================================

    Gee, really? Same as every single other team.

  6. Dallas is set to have over $47M in free cap space next year, and that’s without an cuts or renegotiations. Dallas also currently has the third most cap space (over $110M) for 2020. That space will get eaten up, but it goes to show how much room there is. Also, CUT THE NONSENSE with the talk of Demarcus Lawrence’s contract starting at the second year franchise tag and then even more in 2020. When will would-be-player-agent Florio stop spouting this nonsense? UNTIL THE PLAYER IS TAGGED, HE DOESN’T GET TO USE ITS VALUE AS LEVERAGE. ALSO, WHEN A PLAYER GAINS THE SECURITY OF A LONG TERM DEAL, HE SACRIFICES SOME SALARY IN THE PROCESS. You don’t get to build a long term deal with the bonus value of short terms salaries…that’s having your cake and eating it too.

  7. crik911 says:
    November 23, 2018 at 3:21 pm
    Id sign Zeke and Elliot to competitive deals.

    ………….
    See what happens when you eat to much turkey.

  8. I’ve watched Dak Prescott several games this season. He makes an occasional nice throw, but he misses so many other throws. He’s inconsistent and I would not want to pay him a lot of money. I’d rather go with an inexpensive QB and use the money elsewhere.

  9. 6ball says:
    November 23, 2018 at 4:54 pm
    .
    Just being a great personnel guy is not enough in today’s NFL. Astute cap management is an absolute necessity for long term success.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Which is one of the most notable things about the Pats, especially when one considers BB is both the personnel man and the HC. Few have ever been successful at that, and none for as long as he has. I’m not a Pats fan per se, but gotta give them their props.

  10. So many cowboys to resign or not resign. Players’ union contract expiring soon. Many decisions to be made. Signing Dak to more than 4-5 years would be a huge mistake. He’s still unproven. Signing Elliot at all is questionable. He’s gonna want too much money to realistically “keep him a cowboy”. D Lawrence will be a major contract, if the cowboys can even sign him. Bank of another franchise tag for next year.
    Cowboys must be careful not to go back to “salary cap hell”!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!