Cowboys decline Leighton Vander Esch’s option, want him around beyond 2021

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Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones confirmed on Monday afternoon that the team is not picking up the 2022 option on linebacker Leighton Vander Esch‘s contract, but he doesn’t see 2021 as the end of the line for Vander Esch in Dallas.

Exercising the option would have guaranteed Vander Esch a salary of $9.145 million and Jones said on 105.3 The Fan that the team’s position under the salary cap drove the decision not to pick it up. He added that the team is interested in signing Vander Esch to a different contract.

“Our intention is to keep Leighton around for the next four, five years,” Jones said, via Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News.

Vander Esch has missed 13 games over the last two seasons with a neck injury and staying on the field for all of next season would likely help his hand in negotiations with the Cowboys or any other team that might be interested in his services.

4 responses to “Cowboys decline Leighton Vander Esch’s option, want him around beyond 2021

  1. If he plays 16 games this year it’s legit going to cost them more than the option to keep him next year… I can’t wait to watch this happen

  2. By drafting his replacement and declining his large salary increase in 2022, we expect that he’ll return and give us a massive discount.

  3. They really had no choice with the injury history, the neck could be a career ender with any hit or tackle, I’m sure they would have loved to pick up the option but reality intervened, it was really obvious to me that the team drafting Parson’s and Cox and bringing in FA Neal and converting him to LB is shaking this unit up, Jaylon Smith also needs to realize his grace period is up, the man looks totally lost to me at times, are these the answers, we will find out and I applaud them for not staying status quo

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