Contract negotiations with Dak Prescott have been the biggest story for the Dallas Cowboys in the past 18 months or so. Prescott wasn’t happy about being given the terrible NFL franchise tag a season ago go down with a serious ankle injury five games in the season.

It seemed to complicate things further between Prescott and the Cowboys, especially after owner Jerry Jones questioned the quarterback’s style of play immediately after this injury.

So far, nothing had really changed since Dallas ended a disappointing 6-10 season. A week before the Cowboys face a deadline to place the franchise tag on Prescott, we could be on the verge of this long, never-ending drama.

“With the deadline for the Cowboys to place the franchise tag on quarterback Dak Prescott within a week, multiple sources said Tuesday night that talks for a new contract were progressing. Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News noted. A source called the talks “more productive than they have been” in the previous months. “

This seems to be the most encouraging news on the Prescott contract talk before in a while. If Dallas were unable to strike a long-term deal with their star quarterback, then the Cowboys would likely have to bite the proverbial bullet and pay him $ 37.7 million in 2021. under the label mentioned above.

The Cowboys had previously hoped they might be able to do something with Prescott before March 9. We now have a concrete report pointing in the right direction. It’s not nothing.

What would a Prescott contract extension look like?

Last year, it was reported that Prescott wanted a short-term, four-year contract so he could enter free agency while still in his prime. Dallas responded with a five-year offer, which the quarterback camp scoffed at.

It’s unclear if things have changed now that Prescott is recovering from a devastating ankle injury. He was recently seen without crutches at a football ceremony and at the wedding of his teammate Blake Jarwin after undergoing cleaning surgery in December. It’s good news.

After Prescott suffered the aforementioned injury in October, it was noted that the Cowboys’ previous offer was still on the table. It is possible that they have now decided to give in and offer a four-year extension.

Either way, Prescott is looking at something around $ 40 million a year. This last offseason saw Patrick mahomes set the record with a 10-year contract worth an average of $ 45 million per season. Deshaun Watson earns $ 39 million a year on his deal with the Houston Texans. Something in between those two numbers makes sense.

Cowboys salary cap situation

This is one of the main reasons Dallas wants to get a contract extension from Prescott well ahead of the July deadline. The Cowboys are currently valued at $ 16.29 million below the cap. That doesn’t factor in Prescott’s $ 37.7 million franchise figure.

Given the complexity of the NFL’s salary cap during the COVID-19 pandemic, a longer-term deal would benefit both sides. For Dallas, that includes pushing back huge caps later in the contract to account for increased revenue. The New NFL Television Contract would create. In short, that would translate into a lot more flexibility during the 2021 offseason.

In an attempt to remain relevant on the larger NFL scene over the past several years, Jerry Jones and Co. has made it their mission to restructure the contracts of big players.

This left Dallas vulnerable when it comes to flexibility under the salary cap. The only way out for the Cowboys right now might be to give in and give Prescott what he wants on a long-term deal before the NFL free agency begins.

This could be one of the reasons why negotiations on the Prescott contract are progressing at this late stage.