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Tyron & Jaylon Smith’s Contracts Named Best & Worst for 2021 Cowboys

Football site recently named the best and worst contracts for all 32 NFL teams in 2021. For the , and made the list with Tyron as the best bargain as Jaylon as having the worst deal currently.

In their commentary, PFF cited the incredible value of Tyron's contract compared to other top-tier left tackles. Smith has averaged $12.2 million per season on the eight-year deal he signed back in 2014. Currently, premiere tackles like Trent Williams and David Bakhtiari are making nearly doubt that amount at $23 million each year.

At the time it was signed, Tyron's contract made him one of the most expensive left tackles in football. But that's the beauty of getting those extra years on a deal; they protect against inflation and usually end up making the contract a steal in the later years.

Another positive in Tyron's deal is the flexibility Dallas now has in the coming seasons. Assuming they don't do any additional restructuring, Smith's cap hit in 2022 will be $17.5 million and with only $12 million left in dead money.

That means the Cowboys can take whatever step seems necessary if Tyron's issues continue or performance declines.

Having turned 30, Smith could have many good season left. If so then Dallas will enjoy his continued work at a bargain. But at least they have options if Tyron starts to lose it after 10 seasons.

As you can imagine, the conversation around Jaylon Smith's contract is very much the opposite. This Smith is the 7th-highest paid linebacker in all of football at over $12.75 million per season and was one of the lowest-graded starters in the NFL in 2020.

The Cowboys had little choice but to keep Jaylon around this season. His base salary for 2021 became fully guaranteed on March 21st, too early in the process and well before the draft to know whether or not he could be replaced.

Thankfully, if Jaylon's performance doesn't improve this year then Dallas can get out from under the contract in 2022 with relative ease. There will be just $6.8 million in dead money left, giving the Cowboys about $5 million cap savings if Smith is released.

There's no question that Jaylon and many other Dallas defenders were misused and poorly coached under one-year blunder as . The switch to could help Smith to get back to doing what he's good at and hopefully performing close to his compensation.

Jaylon Smith can be worth that $12 million-per-year again if he gets back to his 2018 form. But if not, at least it won't be a long-term problem.

I have no argument with PFF's pick for Dallas' worst contract. and 's deals may have merited consideration but Jaylon's is definitely the worst bang for our buck currently.

For the best, and only because of how many games Tyron Smith has missed lately, I might have gone with the rookie contracts of or as the best value on the entire roster. But as long as Tyron can actually stay healthy this season, he's certainly one of the best bargains we have.

Jess Haynie
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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Dave Fooshee

The best bargain we have is that we only have to speculate on the good or bad contracts. The best deal for us is that we the fans don’t have to pay them.

Cowboy Fan Ed

Tyron has put his time in and prove himself to be one of the best players at his position so he should have a respectable contact! Jaylin :…… he needs a few more years to prove himself but as we all know ole Jerry has already whipped the checkbook out and paid him! But I hope JS steps up and earns his money while under his contract!

Kelvin Little

D.Law is making 20+ million a year. He had 11 sacks in two seasons. He has a cap hit of 27 in 22 and 29 in 23. I think this may be the worst contract.


At Dave Fooshee, the fans DO PAY THE SALARIES for these players, indirectly. If you watch the games on cable TV, YOU ARE PAYING. If you ever bought a souvenir or jersey, YOU ARE PAYING. If you ever attended a game, YOU ARE PAYING.

All the products that sponsor the games, charge us the consumers, x amount more to promote their wares on commercials during the games. It’s called TV MONEY, and the NFL gets wealthy from it. And as the the NFL GETS WEALTHY, SO DO THE PLAYERS.

The NFL COMMISSIONER, Rodger Goodell, reportedly makes $50 million a year. Where is that money coming from??? Real simple, the NFL is a business that produces a product. That product is bought by us, the consumers. Ding Ding Ding.

Do you think Jerry Jones gets his money from a money tree in his backyard. We the consumers are the money tree.

When DP gets an endorsement deal from Jordan Air, we the consumers pay DP indirectly because there’s a built in cost in that purchased pair of sneakers to compensate (pay) DP.

Scott Farrar

When Tyron signed that contract it was obviously a great deal for the Cowboys. Even if he never plays another down ( God Forbid! ) they should honor the contract. One of my all time favorite Cowboys!

Cowboys fan

Kelvin Little…. Demarcus Lawrence is making a lot of money, but it’s not the worst contract on this team!! He may not have had that many sacks lately, but sacks isn’t everything!! He’s ranked towards the top of the league in pressures and he’s one of the best run defenders in the NFL too!! And he does all of that while being double teamed most of the time too…. I agree that his sack numbers have went down the last couple years, but like I said, sacks isn’t everything!! Demarcus Lawrence is still ranked as one of the best edge rushers in the NFL, even without that many sacks!! So you mite wanna go do your research before you try putting somebody down!!

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