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Dallas Cowboys Utilize 5th-Year Option on Guard Zack Martin

Jess Haynie

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Zack Martin

Unsurprisingly, the Dallas Cowboys have exercised their option to add a fifth year to guard Zack Martin's rookie contract. He is now signed through the 2018 season and will likely get a much longer contract extension in the near future.

The news was shared on social media by ESPN's Field Yates, who also gave us the financial details of the option:

Field Yates on Twitter

Source: the Cowboys have picked up G Zack Martin's 2018 5th year option. It's worth $9.341M.

Operating similarly to the NFL's transition tag, the fifth-year option pays a player the average of the top-10 salaries at his position. Offensive linemen are treated as one entity, not separating tackles from guards and centers. This is a very nice deal for interior linemen as they tend to get less money in the open market.

The team option on rookie deals is exclusive to first-round draft picks. It has been in effect since the 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement. It's the primary reason that you don't see teams trading out of the first round of the nearly as much as they used to.

Zack Martin, Cardinals

Guard Zack Martin (AP Photo/James D Smith)

For Zack Martin and the Cowboys this may simply be a formality. There is a deadline in early May to pick up the option so Dallas has to go ahead and do it now, even if they are planning to give Martin a long-term extension in the coming months.

The same happened last year with center Travis Frederick.  Dallas utilized his fifth-year option in April 2016 but then Frederick agreed to an six-year, $56 million contract in August.

Negotiations between Zack Martin and Dallas should be fairly simple. Frederick's contract set a standard that both parties will likely point to, with maybe a slight bump for annual inflation. I would expect Martin's own long-term deal to be announced no later than the end of preseason, if not much sooner.



Cowboys fan since 1992, blogger since 2011. Bringing you the objectivity of an outside perspective with the passion of a die-hard fan. I love to talk to my readers, so please comment on any article and I'll be sure to respond!

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Chiefs Release Eric Berry, Should Cowboys Be Interested?

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Chiefs Release Eric Berry, Should Cowboys Be Interested?

As the Dallas Cowboys still have a glaring need at the safety position, a new name has appeared on the available free agents list, and it's a well known name. The Kansas City Chiefs just released one of the best at the position, Eric Berry. The move by Kansas City is likely salary cap related. The Chiefs had just signed Tyrann Mathieu for a three-year $42M deal. The five-time Pro Bowler will have to find a new home in the NFL.

Adam Schefter on Twitter

Chiefs released five-time Pro Bowl safety Eric Berry. Had Berry been on KC's roster Friday, $7.25 million of his salary would have become fully guaranteed.

The question in many Dallas Cowboys fans minds' right now is pretty obvious. Will the Cowboys be interested? 

Eric Berry is one hell of a football player but injuries have plagued his career lately. Since he suffered a torn Achilles in 2017, Berry hasn't been the same player as before. In the past two seasons, the 30 year old safety has played in only three games.

Field Yates on Twitter

Eric Berry's tenure with the Chiefs: * 88 games played * 445 tackles * 50 PBU * 14 INT * 5 TD score * 5X Pro Bowler * 3X First Team All Pro More importantly: a cancer survivor who returned to the field and inspired countless people along the way.

Berry would be a nice fit for the Dallas Cowboys' defense to pair with Xavier Woods. However, the front office has already passed on many available safeties. For Berry to come to Dallas, the price would have to be right. It's tough to imagine where Berry's value would land in such a busy safety market. Both Landon Collins and Earl Thomas have signed big time contracts.

Age and injury history could be factors that drop Berry's price to a number that the front office would be interested in. I honestly would be surprised if he got top money today. A contract with little guaranteed money could get the Cowboys involved.

mike fisher ✭ on Twitter

Chiefs cut S Eric Berry. I'm told #Cowboys will investigate ... but recent serious health issues and inactivity - Berry is great story as a cancer survivor - mean LOTS of research is merited.

Mike Fisher took to Twitter to say the Cowboys will investigate the newest safety in the market.

The Cowboys have already seen Earl Thomas and others sign contracts elsewhere and while their free agency philosophy is clear at the moment, I believe it'd be a mistake to leave the need for a safety unattended until late April. There are quite a few options out there the team should explore.

Whether it's Eric Berry or another player such as Tre Boston, Andrew Sendejo or Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, the Cowboys should sign a starting safety and leave the draft picks for other positions.

Tell me what you think about "Chiefs Release Eric Berry, Should Cowboys Be Interested?" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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REPORT: Dallas Cowboys Re-Sign Backup OT Cam Fleming

Jess Haynie

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Taco Charlton, Cameron Fleming

The Cowboys are holding on to an important depth option from last year's team. They have reportedly re-signed Offensive Tackle Cameron Fleming, who served as their swing tackle in 2018.

Todd Archer on Twitter

The Cowboys kept a valuable part of their offensive line in Cameron Fleming, according to a source. Fleming played well in three starts last year, filling in at left tackle for an injured Tyron Smith. Given Smith's recent injury history, the Cowboys... https://t.co/DoB7sL9YpK

Mike Garafolo on Twitter

Cowboys OT Cam Feming is staying in Dallas, as @toddarcher said. Source adds it's a two-year deal worth up to $8.5m.

Fleming was a free agent signing last year, brought in to be the swing tackle thanks to his experience with the New England Patriots. He started 20 games, not counting some in the playoffs, for the Pats during four seasons there.

Cam had to start three games for Dallas in 2018 due to injury issues with Tyron Smith.

Then language in Garafolo's tweet suggests that there are playing-time incentives in the deal. Fleming' got $2.5 million from the Cowboys last season, so it appears he's getting a potential raise in this new contract.

Given Tyron Smith's recent string of health concerns this is a smart signing. Fleming is still in his physical prime and had more experience than most guy who'd be willing to accept a backup role.



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Cowboys Re-Sign FB Jamize Olawale; Bigger Role Coming?

Jess Haynie

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Time to get FB Jamize Olawale More Involved Offensively?

The Dallas Cowboys have re-signed Fullback Jamize Olawale to a three-year deal. He wasn't used much last season, but could the change in offensive coordinator lead to a bigger role this versatile player?

The new contract is reportedly a three-year deal for $5.4 million, with roughly half of that guaranteed.

Olawale was acquired last year in a trade with the Raiders. After previous fullback Keith Smith left in free agency, Dallas sent a fifth-round pick to Oakland in exchange for Jamize and a sixth-round selection.

Jon Machota on Twitter

Source: The Cowboys and fullback Jamize Olawale have agreed to a 3-year, $5.4 million deal with $2.8 million guaranteed

Despite the offensive ability that he flashed during his Oakland years, Olawale hardly ever saw the ball with the Cowboys. He was thrown at just four times during the regular season, resulting in two catches for 13 yards.

As as Raider, Olawale was used as a receiving option and even played running back at times. He averaged over 230 yards of offense from 2015-2016 and scored four touchdowns.

With this new contract averaging $1.8 million, making Jamize one of the higher paid fullbacks in the NFL, one must wonder if Dallas plans to get more out of him in 2019.

Perhaps Kellen Moore taking over the offense from Scott Linehan is behind this surprising move. It was hard to imagine the Cowboys keeping Olawale at this price based on last year, but the new Offensive Coordinator might have plans for utilizing his skills more than Linehan did.



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