Following a strong start to the 2019 season in which quarterback Dak Prescott led the Dallas Cowboys to a 3-0 record, there was an expectation that he would soon be a very rich man. However, the contract talks have since died down, to the point that no progress was made during the recent bye week. According to NFL insider Ian Rapoport, Prescott is now heading toward the franchise tag.
As Rapoport explained on Sunday morning, most extensions for franchise players do not occur during the season. Although the bye week can often provide an opportunity for negotiations. There is still an opportunity for the discussions to take place as the season progresses considering that neither the team or Prescott have put a deadline on the talks.
If the Cowboys gave Prescott the exclusive franchise tag, it would cost them more than $33 million. If he's tagged again in 2021, it would eclipse $40 million, and he could become a free agent in 2022 if they haven't struck a pact.
Following the 3-0 start to the season, the Cowboys lost three consecutive games, including a disheartening defeat at the hands of the one-win New York Jets. This inconsistency on the field put Prescott's extension in doubt, but he followed the losing streak up with two wins against the rival Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants.
Despite the bounce back, the contract talks stalled. The reason provided at the time was that the Cowboys prefer to lock up their players for a very long time. The six-year extension given to running back Ezekiel Elliott prior to the season was a fitting example.
However, quarterbacks such as Carson Wentz and Jared Goff signed four-year extensions in recent months. This means that they will be able to cash in with another deal much quicker. Rapoport actually reported earlier in the season that Prescott is on the hunt for a shorter deal.
At 5-3, the Cowboys are still in control of the NFC East and can continue pushing for a second straight division title. Although defeating the Minnesota Vikings during Sunday Night Football will play a major role in this quest.
If Prescott can outduel Kirk Cousins and the Vikings in primetime, he will add further evidence that he is the top option for the Cowboys going forward. Granted, the team has never wavered in their support. They just have to award Prescott with a mega-deal to prove this point, which may not actually happen until the season is over, if not later.
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