Report: Dak Prescott rejected $33 million per year in new money in September

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Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott bet on himself in September, and he’s about to cash in. One way or the other.

Clarence E. Hill, Jr. of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports that the Cowboys and Prescott “came close to deal in September on a contract that would have paid him roughly $33 million annually.” Talks broke down when Prescott wanted more.

Here’s the thing to remember regarding any talks from 2018. Prescott’s paltry salary of $2 million for 2019 would have dragged down the total value at signing of any new contract. If, for example, the Cowboys had offered a five-year extension worth $33 million per year, the average value at signing on the six-year deal would have been $27.8 million per year, halfway between to total value at signing of the contracts signed by Jimmy Garoppolo (five years, $27.5 million per year) and Kirk Cousins (three years, $28 million per year).

Hill reports that Prescott wants a deal that will pay him as much or more than Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson. But there’s a big difference between Wilson’s new-money average of $35 million per year and his total value at signing of $31.4 million per year. Since Prescott currently has no contract, Prescott’s total value at signing and new money will be the same.

So will it be $35 million per year or $31.4 million per year or somewhere in between?

Here’s the more important reality regarding the value of Dak’s next deal. Once the Cowboys apply the franchise tag, the market at the position doesn’t matter. What matters is the projected payout under the tag. If the Cowboys risk exposing Prescott to an offer sheet from another team (which if not matched would give the Cowboys a pair of first-round picks), the starting point would be the non-exclusive tag of roughly $27 million for 2020, along with a 20-percent bump in 2021 to $32.4 million. And then comes 2022, where Prescott would be entitled to a 44-percent increase, to $46.65 million. That’s a year-to-year payout of $106 million over three years, an average of $35.35 million.

If the Cowboys apply the exclusive tender, things get much more expensive. It’s $33.4 million for 2020 (for now) then $40.08 million for 2021 then $57.71 million for 2022, a three-year payout of $131.19 million, or $43.73 million per year.

That’s a huge amount of leverage, if Prescott is willing to play on a year-to-year basis. And he has shown over the past year a stubborn reluctance to bow to the wishes of the Joneses, holding firm for the contract he believes he deserves.

Prescott has even more leverage, given that under the rules of the tag he has the right to stay away from all offseason, training-camp, and preseason activities while still making the full amount of the tender if he shows up in early September. The Cowboys can’t afford to not have Prescott around for the preparations for the first season of Mike McCarthy’s tenure as coach, and if Dak is willing to continue to hold firm it puts maximum pressure on the Cowboys to pay up.

141 responses to “Report: Dak Prescott rejected $33 million per year in new money in September

  1. Please. He’s not even worth 20 million. Don’t do this Jerry, you can bring in Tom Brady on the downside of his career for that cost and it would be a better move than paying Dak.

  2. Can not blame the player for asking as much as possible. They are always 1 play away (alex smith) from never playing again (and alex almost died with an infection after surgery)

    On the other hand…. I’d look at teddy Bridgewater and trade or let dak walk.

  3. Wow. These hyped up teams who read their own press clippings and enable their overhyped players, pay for it in the end.

    Dak doesn’t know the market peaked with Cousins.

    It will settle down the closer they get to the nitty gritty of the new
    cba.

  4. This is where it must be a nightmare to be an NFL GM. Prescott is a good NFL QB, but he’s not some elite guy that can carry a team like Russell Wilson. Tying up $35M a year to a QB should mean that you have Aaron Rodgers or Patrick Mahomes, not just a “good NFL QB”.

    If I were a GM, I would find a way out of that trap. There are QBs out there that can do what Prescott can do that aren’t nearly that crazy expensive. They may be an underappreciated veteran or someone still on their rookie contract, but they’re out there.

  5. Hey, if Dak can pull it off and get that contract, more power to him! Everyone should maximize their earnings, regardless of what their career is. But if I was the GM, I’d point out that Wilson has 2 super bowl appearances, 7 trips to the playoffs and a whole lot of career stats backing up his contract. That said, Dak is a better choice than a lot of the bums out there, so the Cowboys might be over a barrel here.

  6. I bet Dak is waiting for Mahomes to sign his contract. He will then tell Jerry he wants more than him as he probably thinks he’s a better player. Dak is that delusional.

  7. If I were the Cowboys, i’d let another team sign him as a free agent and collect the 2 1st round picks, Prescott isn’t worth 2 1st round picks, but he’s also not worth 20mil a year, let alone 33, he hasn’t done squat in the NFL, just because the Vikings were stupid enough to pay Cousins 28mil a year, doesn’t mean other teams should be equally stupid, besides, after making 2mil a year, how can you possibly turn down 33??? For having done nothing, what an EGO!!!

  8. This is a fine example of negotiating through the press. By letting it be known that Prescott turned down an offer that seems on the surface either fair or exorbitant, depending on how you look at it, the Cowboys are trying to create public pressure on Dak to sign a more team friendly deal. Pretty typical.

  9. The players should find a way in the new CBA to limit the amount of cap that van be allocated one position on the football team. Paying the QB an extreme amount of money limits the team and the players. The new CBA should allow force a team to have a year around developmental/coaching system for a non starting QB or practice squad QB.

  10. Screw it. You can’t win by signing guys to contracts that they can’t outperform and Prescott can’t outperform $33M per year. Maybe only 3 or 4 QBs actually can, and not by much. So let him go.

    Something like Philip Rivers for $22M would be better production per cap dollar. Even Andy Dalton but at more like $18M. Tannehill on a medium deal if he shakes loose. Derek Carr if he shakes loose. Cam Newton. There’s a big supply this year.

    Also, if I were Prescott, I wouldn’t be *too* eager to see what life is like without All-Pro running and blocking.

  11. This fan of the Philadelphia Eagles believes the Cowboys should pay Prescott $40 million a year. If they refuse to do so, Prescott should hold out the entire year and make rap videos with Leveon Bell.

    That is all

  12. “And then comes 2022, where Prescott would be entitled to a 44-percent increase to 46.65million”

    Why stop after the annual hypothetical tag-tag-tag scenario? In 2023 he would be entitled to a 68-percent increase and in 2024 after tag-tag-tag-tag-tag a 96-percent increase!

  13. This is a tough one, Dak is good, but not great. I listened to a pretty good discussion on radio how NBA teams move on from guys who wont win championships more quickly than the NFL. NFL GM’s seems to hold on and pay market or above value for a guy who is okay. If you don’t think he is your guy, why not spend that 20M somewhere else? Cowboys are in a tough spot because they are a team on the cusp, but he is not a 30M QB in my opinion.

  14. beelzebubmcfrosty says:
    February 7, 2020 at 2:27 pm
    1westcoastfootballfan says:
    February 7, 2020 at 2:17 pm
    He’s no Russell Wilson. He ain’t even Carson Wentz.

    You’re right – Dak has won a playoff game.
    _________________
    So…… 1 playoff game = 35 mil a year.
    ZGot it.

  15. I would rather pay Jameis Winston $20 million a year than Dak Prescott $31-35 million a year… and trust me, I don’t want to pay Jameis Winston $20million a year.

  16. This is one of those examples where the player is NOT worth anywhere near what he thinks he is worth. Let him walk or trade him to the Bengals for the 1st pick.
    Zero chance this guy is worth that. He has not won anything yet. Barely gets his team in the playoffs!!! What a joke

  17. Dak Prescott is not worth elite QB Money. Prescott pads his stats against bad to middling defenses but when the bright lights come on and it comes time to earn that giant pay check he’s seeking he falls flat on his face when going against the NFL’s best, he’s never gotten over the hump when playing against playoff caliber competition. The Cowboys would be much better off franchising Dak Prescott for 2020 and then drafting a QB in the upcoming draft to groom behind Dak Prescott, trade up for a guy like Justin Herbert and take your chances rather than over paying Dak Prescott. Dak isn’t a guy who will can bring a super bowl to Dallas, as loaded as the Cowboys were last year he couldn’t even get them to the playoffs despite playing in WEAKEST DIVISION in the NFL. If Jerrah pays Dak Prescott it will be a MASSIVE MISTAKE he will come to regret.

  18. QB’s have been underpaid for years, hardest position to play in sports – $35M/yr will be a bargain in 5 years just like $20/M was a bargain 5 years ago.

  19. Wow, that’s a lot of coin for a guy who is at best the 5th best player on the Cowboys offense and who can’t even lead the team to 9 wins and/or the playoffs. Jerry should be checked into an insane asylum for offering him that much money. The Cowboys are doomed.

  20. Jerry should publicly state for months that the Cowboys are not market setters and then hand out multiple market setting contracts.

    It worked so well for them last year, i think they should do it again.

    Dak and Amari will combine for $55 mill – $60 mill a year. That will give the Cowboys 4 record setting contracts.

    The Top 4 contracts on the Cowboys will account for at least 45% of their cap space.
    The Top 10 contracts on the Cowboys will account for at least 77% of their cap space.

    That’s not including trying to sign any of their many FAs such as Byron Jones, Cobb, top 2 TEs, etc.

  21. I would use the non-exclusive tag. Jerry doesnt think Dak is worth the salary. If someone else wants him for 35M+ and two firsts, then match or let him go. If no one wants him, well then Jerry will have a lot more leverage.

  22. So, in Jerry’s mind, paying Dak $33+ million will solve all the problems that caused the Cowboys to miss the playoffs when they were paying Dak $2 million? This guy is really is delusional.

  23. I know the positions are different of course but, how did playing hard ball work out for Leveon? He lost a year salary and then signed a deal worth less than the one he rejected a year before.

    Dak, stop looking at your Madden rating. That was a fair offer.

    It’s ok, some other team might take a flyer at him and they’ll pay the price too.

  24. But then again, it is all about the guaranteed money. So we really don’t know how the proposed contract is structured. That might be the holding point.

  25. This is one of those examples where the player is NOT worth anywhere near what he thinks he is worth. Let him walk or trade him to the Bengals for the 1st pick.
    ______________
    Trade Dak for the first pick in the entire draft?? Absolutely hilarious! Please, dont stop.

  26. Jerry will always make the deal for his stars. I am no fan but the guys likes to the press conference and the hand clapping that goes with it. Prescott isn’t a top 5 guy but he is probably 5 to 10 and you pay for that. The team has $77M in cap space so I don’t see why they can’t get Dak, Amari and Byron Jones signed.

  27. Mike McCarthy could trot Matt Flynn out on the field, and with that offensive line, receiving talent and RB, the Cowboys would still finish top 10 in points.

  28. This dude is barely worth half of 35 million. There is no world where this guy even merits 25 million. Not at this point

  29. Wow that dude is crazy.

    He should have worked it for as much up front bonus and signed.

    New coach might not work out for him.

    If he did that he would have almost earned in interest what he was paid last season.

    Dude is an idiot.

  30. It would be very interesting to sign Tom Brady to a one year contract and see just how far Brady can take this talented team.

  31. Not faulting him because that is the game that is played in the NFL. Just can’t imagine being offered that kind of money and saying nah.

  32. Has anyone seen Dak’s hip flip warm up drill pregame , that alone is impressive and worthy of 40 million a year 😀

  33. 3 year 95 million guaranteed by then your window will be shut, draft a new qb and start over…clearly jerry is not in this to win super bowls it’s all business

  34. jerry should remind Dak he’s getting all these endorsement deals not for his many championships, but because he is the QB of the Dallas Cowboys…he should take that into account when trying to strike a deal.

    A mannequin QB wearing the star would still make make millions in endorsements..

  35. I can’t imagine turning down 33mil per year. That is all about pride. But I suppose he’ll get more because Jerry is old and doesn’t want to start over.

  36. Dak is a smart guy. He knows that when Mahomes signs the salary structure for QB’s goes to a whole new level. Even if he plays under the tag for a year, he will reap the benefits of waiting. Jerry, you can pay him now or pay him a lot more later.

  37. Franchise tag him. If the Cowboys don’t go to the NFC championship at minimum, move on. It’s really that easy. The Redskins did the same with Cousins and it was the right move.

  38. redclaw1314 says:

    February 7, 2020 at 4:08 pm

    Dak is a smart guy. He knows that when Mahomes signs the salary structure for QB’s goes to a whole new level. Even if he plays under the tag for a year, he will reap the benefits of waiting. Jerry, you can pay him now or pay him a lot more later.
    —————————————————————–
    When they don’t make the playoffs next year will his salary still go up after a year on the franchise tag?

  39. Dak needs to be realistic, he’s not done anything near what Wilson has done. He’s a notch below Russell Wilson and the sooner he understands that, the quicker a contract can get done.

  40. otistaylor89 says:
    February 7, 2020 at 2:49 pm
    QB’s have been underpaid for years, hardest position to play in sports – $35M/yr will be a bargain in 5 years just like $20/M was a bargain 5 years ago.

    ———

    I think that’s the whole point everyone is trying to make. Yes, it’s a difficult position to play because you need both talent and brains. Elite QBs have a high level of both. Dak has average skills, average brains. The problem is he’s demanding more money than what he’s worth. Even if you considered $35 million a bargain in 5 years, Dak is only worth $15-20 million in today’s money, not $35.

  41. Puleeze, if they cave and pay as much or more than the highest paid QB, it’ll be hilarious. He is not a QB that can carry a team (Mahomes, Wilson, Rodgers) so do not pay him as if he can. If he were capable of carrying the team, the Cowboys would’ve been to the playoffs, He is average, at best.

  42. Tag him, you get his services for another year, maybe 2. Or 2 1st Rounders? That sounds like an even better deal.

    Or let him walk….maybe you bring in Rivers, Brady or other journeymen on the market for under $25M per year & you divert spend to other positions.

    I don’t think the Cowboys are really under the gun here.

  43. That was stupid. He did Dallas a favor. I don’t even think he’s worth the non-exclusive tag ($27.4M). Turning down a $33M average? He wants more than Wilson? What in the world. Dallas would be stupid to sign him, especially for $35M/yr. They would probably be better off signing Bridgewater and letting Dak walk. Then they could just draft another QB. I’m all for paying a franchise QB but Dak is worth nowhere near $30M and he’d have a hard time getting close to that.

    If I were Dallas I’d slow play him. Tag him with the non-exclusive tag and let him sit out training camp. Then withdraw the offer on the last day of training camp and wish him good luck signing with another team.

  44. Even at that amount, if he signed, it would’ve been the death of the online and possibly more. They need to let him go. Go after Newton or Mariota, keep the core players around.

  45. Trade him to Carolina for Cam and go with a Baltimore style offense. Draft a running QB to be the backup and wahlah…..the Cowboys are out from under a long term contract for an average QB and exciting to watch again-

  46. Here comes the smear campaign, am I the only one to see that? Whenever there is a report about how much a guy turns down, that’s just the team trying turn the fans against the “greedy” player.

  47. charliecharger says:
    February 7, 2020 at 5:11 pm
    I love Russell Wilson, but I’d take Dak if I had to choose one

    The only edge Dak has on Wilson is he’s younger.

    Wilson is demonstrably better at EVERYTHING QB related.

  48. Did you people commenting not even read the article? 33 million in new money would have been ~27 million per year over the length of the contract. He’ll make more now, count on it.

  49. with this new short passing style of the NFL (which i think is boring but effective) quarterbacks in my opinion are becoming less valuable if i was building a team i would have a reliable but average qb on a cheap deal to use that $ in other areas. just look at the last few teams to go to the superbowl other than tom brady mostly cheap Qb’s. and even his deal was cheaper than most

  50. Dak overplaying his hand and it isn’t a good time with someone like Brady lurking in FA. Whats funny is even if Dak was willing to take 30m now cowboys would and should stall until FA and see what the options are

  51. Draft Jalen Hurts in the 2nd round and open another four year salary cap window for McCarthy. Cycling through rookie deal QBs is the future for the NFL. Cowboys have a chance to get out in front of it.

  52. Don’t like Brady or Dallas yet I would somehow be ok with them winning a SB together. Weird

    Dak strikes me as the Matthew Stafford of this new generation of QBs. Good enough, close enough to great, to ensure you will keep signing him, bird in the hand

  53. Wilson carried his team to 11 wins and a divisional round appearance. Mahomes rallied his team from three ten-point deficits in the playoffs. Put Dak on the Seahawks, they are rivaling the Bengals for pick #1. He loses to Houston in a blowout. That isn’t worth 30 mil

  54. He should wait until Mahomes signs. Then he can find out how much he is not worth. He may actually end up having to settle for less.

  55. Jerruh will pay Prescott, can’t admit his judgement was off. Prescott should hold out, Elliott provided the blueprint on how to play Jerruh like a fiddle.

  56. whostolemyxanax says:
    February 7, 2020 at 5:39 pm
    Did you people commenting not even read the article? 33 million in new money would have been ~27 million per year over the length of the contract. He’ll make more now, count on it.

    That’s what happens to every QB on a new deal. Wilson’s also was less than announced in New money.

  57. What has Dam done for the boys? Right a big NOTHING. Let him walk trade him and get a young an out of college can’t do any worse. New coach new qb!

  58. The smartest thing the Cowboys could do is let Dak hit the open market. No tags. Call his bluff. The rest of the league might offer him $30-per, at best. Every 6 months that this story tumbles through Jerry’s spin-cycle, Prescott’s asking price goes up another million per year.

  59. It’s good ol’ capitalism, I guess. (Which I like.) But come on. How did salaries get so crazy? They are going to raise ticket prices…concessions, etc. So who ultimately pays that 31.5 mill? Could it be…the fans?

  60. Tough call, QBs don’t grow on trees, only 1 gets a trophy per year, Dak is young, has 5 to 10 shots at it, we have the offensive line and RB now, and no time to develope a new QB with current group, have to keep him somehow, he is an excellent, far above average NFL QB on a team whose front office was slightly dysfunctional

  61. No way a team pays Dak AND gives up 2 first rounders. Non exclusive tag is the way to go. If you don’t think you can do better.

  62. So Dak’s 40 wins since 2016 have come with the help of 9 All Pro offensive players (7 on the O-line) over those 4 seasons. Russell Wilson’s 40 wins have come with…one – Duane Brown in 2018. Someone please show some guts and help Dak to the airport. Some team somewhere can give him what he wants – and we will take the picks, thank you.

  63. There’s going to be a lot of turnover on the roster in Dallas this offseason. 26 players are unrestricted or restricted free agents. New coaching staff, with the exception of three assistants, and who knows who McCarthy will retain or bring in. It’s all about finding players that fit the system at this point. The defense will be noticeably different, but the offense probably will be pretty much the same, since McCarthy kept Moore on as OC.

    He probably made that decision under the assumption that Prescott and Cooper would be signed or tagged. But what if they’re not? Either or both could hold out, be traded or leave in free agency.

    There’s also going to a lot of turnover around the league. Usually, most teams see about 20-30% change in rosters every year, but this year is not like every other year. With a new CBA being negotiated, there’s no telling what changes the final agreement will bring, regarding rules for free agency and player compensation.

    Plus, there are 20 veteran quarterbacks, several of them champions, who will be on the market. This is not the time for Prescott to turn down a $33/million/year contract. Maybe it’s about the guaranteed money. Elliott held out for $50 million guaranteed, and how did that work out? He couldn’t even gain fifty yards in the loss for the division title.

    No doubt that is on the Jones’s minds.

  64. whostolemyxanax says:
    February 7, 2020 at 5:39 pm
    Did you people commenting not even read the article? 33 million in new money would have been ~27 million per year over the length of the contract. He’ll make more now, count on it.

    ———————————

    That’s not exactly correct. 33×5 = $165 mill ($33 mill yr). He had 1 yr left on contract at $2 mill (2019) which was not being replaced. The new contract would’ve started in 2020. So ($2 mill + $165) / 6 years = $27 mill/yr in new money. The same $33 mill/5yr offer becomes $33 mill/yr in new money because it is only 5 years now instead of 6.

  65. does anybody else here feel kind of gross reading an article that refers to $2M a year as a “paltry salary?”

  66. How many have actually looked and compared Dak’s stats for this last year to other QB’s in the league? I see all these freaking experts in here that seem to be able to judge football talent better than any expert that actually has a job in the NFL, and it amazes that many haven’t looked at the numbers, which speak for themselves in many ways.

  67. spencerhsite says:
    February 8, 2020 at 8:08 am
    How many have actually looked and compared Dak’s stats for this last year to other QB’s in the league? I see all these freaking experts in here that seem to be able to judge football talent better than any expert that actually has a job in the NFL, and it amazes that many haven’t looked at the numbers, which speak for themselves in many ways

    Do tell.

    What numbers do you see that make him the first or second best QB in the NFL?

  68. So Dak is the best QB…

    Cooper is the best receiver…

    Zeke is the best RB…

    We all “know” from Dallas fans they have the best OLine…

    And yet.

    8-8

  69. There are players killing themselves for under a quarter of that! let him Walk! There is getting to be a glut of QB’s and dak isn’t 1/2 as good as he was.

  70. Fastest way to bring a team down = overpay your QB, I don’t care how good he is he’s only one player and can only play one position!

    You could have 6-8 good players for that money!

  71. realitycheckbaby says:
    February 8, 2020 at 10:37 am

    spencerhsite says:
    February 8, 2020 at 8:08 am
    How many have actually looked and compared Dak’s stats for this last year to other QB’s in the league? I see all these freaking experts in here that seem to be able to judge football talent better than any expert that actually has a job in the NFL, and it amazes that many haven’t looked at the numbers, which speak for themselves in many ways
    ______________________

    Do tell.

    What numbers do you see that make him the first or second best QB in the NFL?

    ================================

    Where “EXACTLY” did you see he said that Dak was the 1st or 2nd best QB in the NFL?
    And why do some people always try to put words in other people’s mouth?
    He just said “look at the numbers”, not a word about where he thought Dak was rated!

  72. I don’t care if its Rodgers, Wilson, Jimmy G, Wentz, Dak, Mahomes or whoever, if I were a GM I’d send every one of them down the road before I’d put my team in cap hell for years by paying one player $30mil/yr or more! And I’d never make any player the highest paid player at his position, if they insist on it they are’t a team player and therefore I wouldn’t want them on my team and I’d thank them and send them down the road, simple as that.

    You know that greed thing the players accused the owners of a few years ago must be one really contagious disease because a whole lot of the players have it now!

    One question I’d ask every one of them “exactly what is it that you can do with $30-35mil/yr that you can’t do on $25mil/yr”?

  73. He could have taken 33 million dollars and called it a team-friendly deal to help win a championship and been the “good guy”.

    Might have actually won over a few of those people that don’t believe in him.

    Instead he’s going to demand more than Russell Wilson?

    I expect people in these threads to disrespect Russell Wilson out of ignorance but guys like Dak Prescott and his agent have got to know that he pales in comparison.

    Smh

  74. The question is how much of it is guaranteed. amount per year means nothing. The guaranteed part is all that matters.

  75. Of the 4 QB’s mentioned in this story only Russell Wilson is a good QB. And because the NFL made the QB position what it has, it has hurt the NFL and teams as a whole. Russ isn’t worth $35 a year but then no QB is. This should have been addressed issue when Cousins was in Washington getting $20. I heard Cousins saying the other day he is just getting market value. Cousins is set to get $29 million in 2020. Everyone can see he is overpaid. Fix the market for QB it is ruining football.

  76. Dak’s 1 playoff win people are talking about was at home. And against the Detroit Lions, plus they got some home calls to advance.

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