Cowboys Predicted to Trade Dak Prescott for Huge Draft Haul Amid Contract Stalemate

Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott

Getty Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott

This is, of course, a hypothetical. It’s speculation. And it’s out of left field. Yet, it’s also reasonable in light of the way things have unfolded for the Cowboys this offseason and so it’s at least worth consideration: In a proposed trade, USA Today’s Cowboys site foresees Dallas trading away star quarterback to the Raiders for a sizable package that would allow the Cowboys to dive deep into a rebuild.

The package in question? Well, it’s based on what the Lions got in return for Matthew Stafford when they dealt him to the Rams for Jared Goff. The Cowboys would get back Aidan O’Connell, who was a rookie last season and took over as the starter at midseason. They’d also get the No. 13 pick in this year’s draft, the Raiders’ second-rounder (44th overall), and their fourth-rounder (112th).

They would then get the Raiders’ first- and third-round picks in 2025, as well as a 2026 second-rounder.

That’s six picks, five of which are in the first three rounds. While trading away Prescott would be difficult to swallow, the Cowboys have made little effort to re-sign him as he heads into the final year of his contract. If the plan is to let him hit free agency next offseason, why not swap him for a big haul now?

Raiders’ Aidan O’Connell Worth a Shot?

Here’s the logic from writer K.D. Drummond on dealing away Dak:

“If Dallas isn’t going to sign Prescott to an extension, why would they keep him for just a single season and only get a third-round compensatory consideration (the pick isn’t guaranteed) in 2026?  If Dallas doesn’t draft a QB in this draft, they have O’Connell compete with Trey Lance for QB1 status in training camp.”

Now, O’Connell did show some promise last season with the Raiders, though he also showed some serious weaknesses. He is an accurate passer who has some leadership skills, even as a rookie. He also holds onto the ball too long and too often lacks mobility. O’Connell went 5-5 as a starter and threw for 2,218 yards, or 201.6 per game, though he was sacked 24 times.

In his last four games, the Raiders went 3-1 and O’Connell threw eight touchdowns and no interceptions. He had a 98.4 quarterback rating in those games, clearly showing his improvement late in the season.

Cowboys & Dak Prescott: No Progress on an Extension

But, of course, dealing away Prescott is not about getting O’Connell, it’s about starting over for a Cowboys team that has disappointed badly in the postseason, most recently in the 48-32 drubbing at the hands of the Packers in January.

In fact, Cowboys Wire is proposing the team trade away both Prescott and the team’s other major contract consideration, wide receiver CeeDee Lamb. The deal for him would add a first- and third-round pick here in 2024, giving the team a full stable of picks with which to begin rebuilding now.

Now, Prescott is still under contract in Dallas and it does appear that the team’s plan is to let him play out the final year of his deal, at a whopping $59 million, and proceed from there. He also has a no-trade clause which, presumably, he would waive to get to a different organization willing to give him a new long-term deal.

But the situation is at a stalemate for the Cowboys and their star QB.

As noted: “The Cowboys and Prescott have a mutual understanding that there will be no adjustment to his contract entering the 2024 season, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported on Tuesday, per sources informed of the plan.”

The Cowboys are clearly considering tearing up the roster with trade if 2024 does not work out as hoped. But if that is the case, they might as well do it now while the value of their trade pieces is high.

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