In a best-case scenario, the consensus goes, Jerry Jones cost himself a lot more money than necessary, shooting himself in both feet with a double-barrel shotgun. In a worst-case scenario, Jones cost the team its cornerstone quarterback, who now appears destined to find a new home next year.
Prescott sits pretty in the driver’s seat, holding all the cards for future discussions. The Cowboys are stuck in the back, unable to change course until 2021 when they’ll need to shell out another fully-guaranteed $37.7 million — at the least — to continue renting the increasingly-expensive passer.
There really is no middle ground. Dak is being hailed as the clear-cut winner in his face-off with the Joneses while Dallas has been severely panned (even by Prescott’s own family) over its inability to quite literally seal the deal.
Mob mentality engaged.
And Dez Bryant to the rescue.
The cowboys never had a problem paying their QBs…….for people saying Dak in control shut up..
— Dez Bryant (@DezBryant) July 16, 2020
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Bryant presumably was drawing a parallel from Prescott to former quarterback Tony Romo, who was twice rewarded by the organization in the form of lucrative, multi-year extensions.
Both were six-year contracts; in 2007, he landed $67.5 million with $24 million guaranteed — a significant investment then — and in 2013 was given $108 million, including $55 million guaranteed and a $25 million signing bonus. The latter windfall vaulted Romo, earning $18 million in annual salary, among the league’s highest-paid QBs.
But that’s primarily because he was willing to commit for an extended period. Prescott wasn’t. The two-time Pro Bowler desired a four-year arrangement and repeatedly made his stance clear by rejecting the Cowboys’ five-year offers, which maxed out at $35 million annually with $110 million guaranteed, according to media reports.
The Jones likely would’ve conceded to handing Dak $40 million per year if they were able to spread out his salary cap charges across six seasons. However, there was zero chance Prescott acquiesced at a time when his counterparts are drawing half-billion-dollar deals.
It takes two to tangle, and neither side wanted to relinquish the lead.
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL