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Too Early to Call Prescott, Cowboys Contract Talks a “Stalemate”

One of the predictable reactions to the Cowboys signing Quarterback Andy Dalton yesterday was what it meant for their contract talks with Dak Prescott. But while things between Dak and Dallas remain undecided, some are already labeling this as a “holdout” or “stalemate.”

For example, take the comments last night by one former Cowboys player who has some recent experience with the organization:

Dez Bryant on Twitter

I really never seen a QB have to hold out for what is rightfully owed to him….you don’t make your leader and the face of the franchise feel some type of way https://t.co/sDIhARG1oB

There’s also this recent tweet from a longtime Cowboys reporter. I’ve seen some fans use this same term recently as well.

Ed Werder on Twitter

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on the Dak Prescott contract stalemate: “When we’re ready to play, he’ll be there.

In chess, it’s game over when there’s a stalemate. And we’re hardly at that point yet when it comes to Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys.

Yes, it ultimately comes down to the sides having differing opinions on the contract. But the finality that’s being expressed lately is a bit hyperbolic.

It’s important to remember some other factors at work right now that have likely delayed the proceedings.

1. Coaching Staff Overhaul

The Cowboys replaced nearly every single coach at the beginning of their offseason. This sweeping change required considerable time that our front office couldn’t then devote to Dak Prescott’s contract.

Remember, we’re not talking about a backup punter here. The franchise QB’s contract, potentially the richest deal in history, isn’t being worked on by anyone’s assistant. The Joneses would be intimately involved every step of the way.

But in January they had to deal with hiring Mike McCarthy and all of the subsequent coaching turnover. There’s no way it didn’t temporarily put Dak Prescott on the back burner.

2. New Collective Bargaining Agreement

Hanging over the talks between Dak and Dallas was the resolution of the NFL’s new CBA, which didn’t occur until March 15th. The ramifications of the new CBA could have had a significant impact on Prescott’s financial future, so it only made sense that both sides would want clarity before finalizing a deal.

Remember, Dallas didn’t even know if it would have the use of the franchise tag until the CBA was resolved. Do we really think that they were going to negotiate with Prescott, given the enormity of the financial commitment, without having all of their potential options on the table?

3. Free Agency & 2020 Draft

It was just as the new CBA was agreed upon we entered into the start of free agency. The Cowboys franchised Dak Prescott, using the more expensive “exclusive” tag, and then began focusing on their other needs from the open market.

Dallas used that exclusive tag so that didn’t have to deal with Prescott right away. They immediately got to work re-signing Amari Cooper, then started adding new players like Gerald McCoy, Dontari Poe, and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.

Quickly thereafter, it became time to work on the 2020 NFL Draft. Again, Dallas had the luxury of waiting to deal with Prescott because they franchised him.

The draft just ended a week ago, and since then the team’s been busy signing undrafted free agents. They also just announced the signing of QB Andy Dalton for the backup job.

So no, the Cowboys haven’t just been sitting by the phone waiting for Dak Prescott to call. They’ve been a little busy.

4. Work disruption/delays due to COVID-19

We can’t dismiss the impact of COVID-19 on all activities over the last two months. While free agency and the draft did occur on schedule, the behind-the-scenes work to facilitate them required more time and energy than teams, players, and agents are accustomed to.

Despite their incredible resources, the Dallas Cowboys still have only one each of Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones, and Will McClay. They get the same 24 hours in each day that we do.

~ ~ ~

Can I speak with firsthand knowledge about these events and how they impacted the Cowboys and Dak Prescott? Of course not.

Still, logic and common sense lead to a fairly simple deduction. A significant factor in the ongoing talks between Dak and Dallas is that the last few months have presented plenty of valid reasons for delay and distraction.

It is now, with the draft and major free agency behind them, that the two parties can engage in talks without other weighty matters hanging overhead. We’ve still got almost three months until the start of training camp.

It’s too early for panic.

What do you think?

Jess Haynie

Written by Jess Haynie

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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  1. Start Dalton! Enough with this Prima Donna Dak. He is hurting our team NOW. $34 million a year wasn’t enough for him. Go POUND SALT you self centered A$$hole!

    People losing their jobs by the MILLIONS and this A$$hole turns down $34 MILLION for playing football for 16 games. Not to mention Doctors and Nurses DYING while trying to help Virus victims.

    He is a DISGRACEFUL, SELFISH A$$HOLE!

    • I don’t understand why the length of the contract is an issue the window for this team is small if this team can’t get it done in the next 4 years they will be rebuilding any way . Lower the amount of guaranteed money give him his ego fluffing money and give up what ever they have to to draft his replacement next year. If the new QB shows potential with in 2 years trade pressnot and recoup your draft picks

    • Agree 100%! Get a life because reality is not facing him! Dallas offer was good and wanting him for an extra year with such a great salary is shameful he wanted this contract for only 4 years!
      Who would not take this deal not having ever won a Supperbowl and building a team to support him! Go to New England and get a draft pick!

  2. Dak is a great QB, but making a commitment to 5 years instead of 4 years, with such a huge contract is not something any regular person can comprehend or offer sympathy! The offer is phenomenal and his agent is out of touch! Other QB’s with Super Bowl rings have smaller contracts! Signing Dalton was an excellent move! Get a pick and New England will trade for him!

  3. Not only do I agree with “Vam” I’ll add what an extreme disappointment. Dak went from loving the game to loving the money of the game.
    NEWS FLASH DAK
    YOU’RE NOT THAT GOOD

  4. Let’s face it, Dak and his agent only care about squeezing every $$$ they can. . .which means spare me be horse manure of “winning”. . . if Dak cared about winning he’d already be done and signed.

    Good news. . . him holding out is now off the table. Dallas can tell him to sit (he can’t go anywhere else) and they can play Dalton. . .granted he’s not as good as Dak but it doesn’t mean he can win with this team

    Oh yeah, further proof that Dez has ZERO business around this team.

  5. I think it’s a disgrace and a slap in the face to every person who watches the games and buy the jerseys ect… Dak Prescott has no idea how lucky he is to be the QB for the most famous team on the planet. Let me tell you something…,.so far you hear about how he’s played for the cowboys and hasn’t seen any of the money that most of the other Qbs do. How he didn’t make any money on his rookie contract. Well how about the money he gets from endorsements? I read he gets more than 50 million a year just from endorsements. He’s not getting those deals because he has a great personality or that he’s a nice guy or a super model. He gets those endorsement deals because he’s the starting QB of the Dallas Cowboys. Because he’s the Qb of Americas team. If he was playing for ANY other team and I mean ANY other team on the planet he doesn’t get any of those endorsement deals. So let me ask you…… how much money do you need? Don’t get me wrong. You always have to look out for number 1 but when you’ve been offered the richest contract in NFL history and you turn it down because you want more and it is about more. Technically he wants a shorter contract but that’s just so he can renegotiate his contract and get drum roll please……… more money. Yes they play a brutal sport and their career can be over in a second but come on. How much money do you need? It’s seriously a slap in the face of every fan for him to still say I want more. Maybe he doesn’t know what it’s like to have to struggle to pay your bills or live paycheck to paycheck. Especially in a time when millions of people are losing their jobs because of the pandemic that’s going on. Don’t get me wrong the guy has talent but at some point when is enough enough? Jerry Jones and company have offered this guy everything. Even to the point of letting the best cornerback in football at the time walk to have more money to throw at Prescott. We had to watch Robert Quinn go elsewhere to save money for Prescott. I don’t think he’s a guy that can go on the field by himself and win the games. It’s seems like he doesn’t get it that there’s other people on the field with him. And while yes we had a great draft and free agency in my opinion but we lost some great players just to have more money for Prescott and he still wants MORE! Enough is enough. Time for the line to be drawn. There’s better QBs out there who don’t make the kind of money he’s been offered. In my opinion Prescott needs to be humbled a little bit and realize he’s not the only person on that team or the only person who can do that job. Where was all the talent last year when we went 8 and 8? Yeah he had great stats but it was a lot of yards beating up on garbage teams. The good teams he played against showed the real Dak Prescott.

    • I have to agree with David! I asked the same question a couple of weeks ago about how much money does a person really need? Most regular folks learn to live off not even a fraction of what these big name guys get! It’s getting to where people are tired of professional athletes holding out for unbelievable amounts of money just to say they make more than the other guy in that position! And all this is money for playing a child’s game!! A word of advice to you guys: Be thankful as of right now you have an income but if stadiums can’t be filled soon (and it’s beginning to look like it will be a long time before they are) there may not be any need for the skills you possess!! You better have a plan B on how to make a living

    • Excellent post! It’s allllllllllll about Dak the Diva. And he is NOT THAT GOOD. Start Dalton. Don’t care that he may not be as good as greedy, he is good enough, especially with that offense. Kick this B to the curb. Should have traded him during the draft to get as many picks as possible. Can still trade him. Get it over with for the team’s sake. He is hurting the team.

  6. You may be right that Dak is overplaying his hand. Or others may be right that Jerry is unwilling to pay Dak what he deserves. But how the hell does anyone really know? Even if we believe the broad outlines of the negotiations as reported in the press, the devil is in the details. Perhaps we should withhold judgment until we know the facts.

  7. I said that should sign a four-year deal Jerry Jones should give it to him he’s proved it the last 4 years he’s proved himself to be a good citizen for the Dallas Cowboys also gotten the most yardage throwing the football he’s got a high average he’s rated one of the best we know he’s not a Patrick Mahomes yet or a Russell Wilson but he should be paid just under Russell Wilson so somebody calling him an a****** selfish no the man just wants what he deserves I don’t think that we should have picked up Andy Dalton if anybody we should have picked up cam Newton

  8. Dalton is a legit starter. He had the 30th ranked OL and AJ was out all yr. Put him here with our OL and an extra second to find the open guy, I say he can be better than Dak at an 80% discount. plus, he won’t be demanding historic $ next yr if he proves it.
    Same $$$ who do you take? Dalton, +pass rusher, +safety, +depth > Dak any day

  9. The market demand has not been higher for the QB position. Ever. Dak will get paid and everyone can just go back to the couch and complain about how much money this man makes. If the money wasn’t available then QB’s wouldn’t be getting paid. People take everything at face value and don’t think about how this is the most profitable sport in all the sporting industries. And this is the most valuable sports team in all of sports. So, that would make Jerry Jones the richest owner in all of sports. Let’s break it down this way. The only reason they have a salary cap in place is because owners can’t control themselves from having the biggest and shiniest toys. Don’t make it personal and come on here and yell at your PC like we know each other. Yes, yelling at your PC is using all caps. Fall back and realize some other dude will get paid more then Dak in a few months and maybe ya’ll can go post and yell on another site. Relax.

  10. Also, please have some sort of respect for a man and his family that are grieving for the loss of a brother. If you somehow were still obsessing over his contact his brother passed away last week.

  11. Come down my fellow Cowboys fan. The Cowboys will sign Dak long term in July. Take It To the Bank!

  12. Pay him his money just like all the other QBs get paid if he feels he should get paid so what . This is a negotiation that what he is suspose to do .Yeah that 34 million is alot but clearly he has work hard enough in his life to get to the point were he can negotiate his salary .You cant be made at him for trying to get paid .Andy has already gotten paid so it dont matter to him he just trying to keep play . No one here is perfect on there jobs and does everything right but when it time to get paid you wanna get paid right or wrong All iam saying is you cant be mad at him for trying to get paid . And if i was him ill let them start Dalton . Let’s get real he aint never won no i mean no playoff game oh that want why cause he took a 3 million dollar deal . Be careful for what you ask for . Jokes

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