Dalton Schultz getting franchise tag from Cowboys

NFC Wild Card Playoffs - San Francisco 49ers v Dallas Cowboys
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Add another tight end to the list of players getting franchise tags this year.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that the Cowboys are using their tag on Dalton Schultz. He joins Mike Gesicki of the Dolphins and David Njoku of the Browns as tight ends who have gotten tagged ahead of Tuesday afternoon’s deadline.

All three players will stand to make $10.913 million under the terms of the tag and will have until July 15 to work out a long-term deal with their teams.

Schultz was a fourth-round pick in 2018 and had just 13 catches over his first two seasons before breaking out in the passing game the last two years. He has 141 catches for 1,423 yards and 12 touchdowns in 33 regular season games and also had seven catches for 89 yards in Dallas’ playoff loss to the 49ers earlier this year.

12 responses to “Dalton Schultz getting franchise tag from Cowboys

  1. Dalton is a nice player, but hardly the league-breaker you think of as a ‘Franchise player’. The NFL should alter the rules on tagging if a Dalton Schultz is what passes for one

  2. good move Dallas. He’s been very productive these last two years and tagging him now is a great way to keep continuity at the role while continuing to evaluate his potential as a long term signing.

  3. Great move considering Cooper will be a cap casualty, and I’d take him over Gesicki or Njoku any day of the week. Also it buys them another year for Jarwin to get healthy.
    A long term deal would have easily cost them $13MM+ per yr that they can’t afford anyway

  4. The franchise tag came on the heels of the league implementing free agency. It was instituted, quite literally, because Pat Bowlan said, “I can’t lose John Elway.” Bowlan himself even said later he didn’t envision the tag being used for ultimately pretty regular players.

    It was also pre-salary cap. So there was nothing stopping a team from blowing up the competitive landscape by throwing a Brinks truck at Elway or someone (or many someones) of that level. Reggie White got one of the first huge (for its time) contracts to leave the Eagles for the Packers and you can expect that gave some other owners pause over losing their own stars.

    In that environment, the tag made sense: With no salary cap, teams needed a way to keep their top guys and the league needed a way to prevent a handful of teams from gobbling up all the top guys.

    Now, however, it’s turned into something else and has long outlived it’s initial intent. Plenty of competitive balance tools have been added since then, chief among them the salary cap but also revenue sharing, compensatory draft picks, and probably others that I’m overlooking, all of which combine to make the tag obsolete in relation to its initial competitive balance purposes.

    In the years after the start of free agency and before the salary cap, the tag made sense. But now it has lingered for decades since and morphed into something different than it was intended to be.

  5. the good news is, schultz is only 26 and hopefully still ascending. if he can improve his blocking this will be a good signing. big if though

  6. He can thank Prescott’s overstuffed contract for getting the tag. Now maybe Prescott can return the favor by giving him good enough stats that he can get a good contract later, if he gets the chance.

  7. u4iadman says:
    Cut zeke

    To what end? Ezekiel Elliot’s salary for 2022 is already fully guaranteed, so Dallas wouldn’t save one slim dime by cutting him this year. His contract renders him practically untradeable, meaning Dallas is stuck with him for now.
    Unless Elliott accepts a significant pay cut in 2023 (highly unlikely) the Cowboys may very well move on after the upcoming season. But as long as they’re on the hook for his 2022 salary it makes more sense to play him and hope for whatever production they can get. The alternative is to pay him big money just to stay home, while taking on an additional salary for his replacement, likely a lesser player.
    Patience, my friend. Zeke’s days in Dallas are numbered, but they aren’t over just yet.

  8. I would expect the to work out a 4 yr $38m deal sometime soon. This just prevents him from hitting the market. He’s worth $7-$8m a year. He isn’t a game breaker down field. But he is a solid consistent contributor and they’d be smart to lock him up. He would get that much easily on the open market.

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