We still have about 24 hours to go but things aren't looking good in contract talks between the Dallas Cowboys and their franchised Tight End Dalton Schultz. It's being reported that the two sides aren't expected to agree to a long-term deal before tomorrow's deadline, meaning Schultz will play 2022 on the one-year franchise tag.
Schultz was tagged back in March and signed the tender for a one-year, $10.9 salary this season. All NFL teams have until tomorrow at 4:00 pm EST to reach new contract agreements with their franchised players. After that, tagged players are locked into the one-year deals and will become unrestricted free agents again in 2023.
We've been watching events unfold between Schultz and the Cowboys throughout the offseason. Despite concerns to the contrary, Dalton did attend the team's mandatory veteran minicamp back in June.
While there haven't been any specific comments from either side about the divide in negotiations, one can safely assume it has to do with the difference between the $10.9 million salary from the franchise tag and the $13-$14 million annually that several tight ends are now making. Schultz has been as productive, if not more so, than several guys who will be making better money in 2022.
But Dallas is rightfully concerned that Dalton's statistics may be more due to their voluminous offense, top-ranked in the NFL last year, than his actual talent at the position. They don't want to overpay or lock themselves into a long-term relationship if they don't truly see Schultz as a high-end asset.
The old saying “deadlines make deals” certainly applies here. But while something could change in the next 24 hours, the report indicates this contract negotiation will have to continue next year.