Dak Prescott contract likely means Amari Cooper, Ezekiel Elliott won’t be on the team for the long haul

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The new contract to officially be signed by Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott will keep him in Dallas for at least four years. It could hasten the exit of other key players.

Although some are speculating that running back Ezekiel Elliott or receiver Amari Cooper could be traded soon due to Dak’s deal, the more likely outcome will be at least one more season with Cooper and Elliott before either or both are traded or released.

Last year, Cooper signed a five-year, $100 million contract that is, as a practical matter, a two-year, $40 million deal. After 2021, the Cowboys can walk away with no guaranteed money remaining and only a $6 million cap charge.

Elliott’s contract will be tougher to navigate, since his 2022 base salary of $12.4 million becomes fully guaranteed later this month. The question becomes whether another team would pay Elliot $12.4 million in 2022.

Elliott could be traded this year, with his base salary of only $9.6 million. A pre-June 1 trade, however, would trigger a $14.9 million cap charge for the Cowboys. It also would saddle his new team with the guaranteed salary of $12.4 million in 2022. (It’s hard not to at least wonder whether former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer is thinking about trading for Elliott; however, the Jaguars have a much cheaper option on the roster in James Robinson.)

Given the structure of the Cooper and Elliott deals, Elliott is more likely to remain through 2022. Cooper, however, likely is entering his final year in Dallas — unless he agrees after the season to a major restructuring of the deal and reduction of his pay.

23 responses to “Dak Prescott contract likely means Amari Cooper, Ezekiel Elliott won’t be on the team for the long haul

  1. Yeah, wait til Jerry sees how his big-money QB plays with mediocre talent around him. Heads will explode.

  2. Such a huge mistake paying Dak this kind of money. No non-exclusive tag, no testing the market, basically negotiating against himself (Jones). Dak is a good guy and leader, but this was an opportunity to have a lot of cap room, a bright future, and to solidify the entire team. If someone wants Elliott and trades for him fine, but don’t trade Cooper. Trade Gallup, he is a free agent next year and they won’t be able to pay him. Unless they want to make one more run this year, the future doesn’t look promising in keeping their p;ayers. Dak, so far, hasn’t carried the team, bad record vs winning teams, and the good first year – the OL was stacked and Elliott was a premier back.

  3. And he is going to be complaining with Russell Wilson why they have nothing to work with

  4. The more time goes on, the more it’s clear that Jimmy Johnson had more to do with the Super Bowls than Jerry did. What atrocious cap management the past couple years and it will only get far worse now.

  5. Well, when you have a special kind of QB who, like Brady, Mahomes, Rodgers, Wilson, and Brees, has the ability to carry a team on his back and elevate them to consistent levels of success regardless of who’s around him, then you can navigate this kind of…

    …wait a minute, we’re talking about Dak Prescott? What are they thinking?

  6. It was Jimmy Johnson that took Dallas to greatness under Jerry Jones. It is Jerry Jones who took Dallas from greatness and made them mediocre at best.

  7. @kevpft your post got me to thinking about your special kind of QB and led me to the conclusion only one name belongs on that list as of today and we all know his name
    Hardware for the Man… 7 rings
    Hardware for the rest combined…4
    Special should be reserved for only…special

  8. Dak looks like you are going to have to go it on your own, but you have money.

  9. NFL football is no longer a team game….It is a greedy QB game. Damned if I beat my body up to get paid pennies compared to the QB. I am losing interest because it is all about the qb, you can’t touch him, they get all the pass interference calls go their way, every thing including the rules are about the QB.

  10. Soon enough it will be Dak making all the money and the rest of the team made up of scrubs. That contract is going to come back to bite them….and when it’s up Jerruh will sign him to $100M a year because he likes Dak.

    I’ll be surprised if the Cowboys finish better than 4-12 these next four years. The O-line is getting worse and the defense was atrocious last year and will probably be worse this year. They better hit on all their draft choices because they are going to need some cheap talent since Dak is taking up over 20% of the cap.

  11. While I agree Dak is about the 12-15th best QB and his record doesn’t support this kind of money. What other choices did Jerry have? Roll the dice on drafting a QB this year, unlikely. Jerry is 78 years old and wants at least one more Super Bowl ring in his life time. A rookie QB won’t get him there any sooner.

  12. I think Prescott is an above average QB who has benefit in his first 5 seasons from a line that competed for the #1 place in the first 4 seasons, a top 3 RB and possibly the best WR tandem in the league. Also over his last two seasons he is 10-11 and sustained a substantial injury . . . so the $40MM per year seems a bit excessive.

  13. The salary cap is going to skyrocket with the new tv deals, so even though it won’t draw the desired response from the anti-Cowboys trolls, they will be just fine, and nobody is going to get cut.

  14. Gonna be awkward when Zeke & Amari are cleaning out their lockers looking over at Dak and thinking: “He’s the reason I’m outta here.”

  15. I think the odd man out will be Elliott. Jerry giving into Elliott after his holdout was a huge mistake. The days of the workhouse RB is outdated. Workhouse RB’s have a very short shelf life. What a team needs is good pair of tandem RB’s. The shelf life is longer and the back takes the pressure off the other back. The NFL is still a QB league. To succeed, your QB to be a leader of men, and a good passer. He doesn’t need to put up the most yardage every week. Then you need the O-line, and next is the WR corp.

  16. Very dumb way to run a team, yes all the other players wont get paid when one mediocre guy make 4 times as much as the whole team!

  17. Can Dak live up to the hype of his contract ? Can the Cowboys build and maintain a good enough team around him from scraps gathered from around the league until they get more cap space to afford more premium players ? Only time will tell, but that is one of the reasons we all watch (although it seems another common one is just to have something to complain about)…..

  18. Cooper is not going anywhere. He is a top 5 to 10 receiver who does his job and never opens his mouth. He is also under a pretty friendly contract cap wise for the next 3 years. They will trade Gallup next year but not Cooper. Besides Florio has not been right about a trade that I can think of. Now Zeke after this year probably so unless he does a 180 and goes back to his old self which is doubtful. But they can get out of his contract next year either way. They might restructure Cooper but he is staying around.

  19. Zeke is like a 6th lineman the way he protects the QB… Hes always healthy too, unlike the 5 regular linemen. Zeke aint going anywhere!

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