QB Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys heading toward contract deadline without deal

Clarence E. Hill Jr., Fort Worth Star-Telegram on

Published in Football

If nothing changes before 3 p.m. Wednesday, Prescott's $31.4 million will be the richest one-year deal ever in Cowboys' history.

Looking toward the next offseason, Prescott could conceivably be tagged again should the two sides be unable to reach an agreement. A second tag would cost the Cowboys $37.7 million. According to, the team has roughly $36 million in space for 2021 when the cap will be lower due to the financial losses due to COVID-19.

The Cowboys could make that second tag work under next year's cap, but it would create a doomsday scenario in 2022 when the tag would rise to $54 million. That hefty sum is one the Cowboys likely won't be able to pay, and could lead to Prescott entering the free agent market.

The problem for the Cowboys is that all the leverage seemingly resides with Prescott.

Two tags would net him roughly $69 million over the next two years. And so either the Cowboys sign him to a long-term deal with $37.7 million annually as the floor or he gets big (or bigger) money as a free agent elsewhere.

Prescott has severely outplayed his contract since coming to the Cowboys as a fourth-round pick in 2016, earning two Pro Bowl selections and leading the team to two division titles, a playoff win and a 40-24 record as starter.

After making a little over a combined $4 million for his four years in the league, Prescott is focused on maximizing his earning potential.


He would like to do it in Dallas and finish his career with the Cowboys. And the Cowboys have consistently said the same thing.

But not being able to come to terms on a contract by Wednesday afternoon's deadline and having to play the season on the franchise tag puts all of that in question.

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