Cowboys Send Message on Micah Parsons’ Future Amid Position Change Talk

Getty Micah Parsons of the Dallas Cowboys.

Micah Parsons will not be making a full-time move to defensive end but it won’t be impacting the Dallas Cowboys star’s pockets going forward.

Parsons has talked about beefing up this offseason to make the move to defensive end, although defensive coordinator Dan Quinn nixed that idea.

“He is a pass-rushing linebacker,” Quinn said to the group of reporters on May 13. “So if you ever need position changes, come to me. I think what he was probably trying to say is that I’m really emphasizing some pass-rush into my offseason.”

Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones echoed that sentiment on Parsons.

“He’s a great defensive football player,” Jones said of Parsons, per ESPN. “Whether he’s making 10-plus sacks a year at linebacker or defensive end, I don’t think it’s a big difference. He’s so versatile.”

Financially, it would make a difference for Parsons. Top-tier defensive ends make more than linebackers, although the Cowboys could come up with something unique for Parsons, who is the heart of the defense and spends the majority of his time getting after quarterbacks.

The Cowboys will be able to negotiate an extension with Parsons next offseason and he’ll likely be coming off three consecutive Pro Bowls to start his career. If he’s able to wrangle a Defensive Player of the Year honor — which he’s openly talked about as one of his goals — his negotiating power would be at its peak. He’s finished second in DPOY voting the last two seasons.

Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald is currently the highest-paid defensive player in the league at $31.7 million a year. Todd Archer of ESPN believes Parsons could threaten that number on his next deal.

Cowboys Confident They Can Lock Up Key Pieces

CeeDee Lamb of the Dallas Cowboys

GettyCeeDee Lamb of the Dallas Cowboys.

The Cowboys have more pressing concerns than Parsons when it comes to extensions. Pro Bowl cornerback Trevon Diggs can become an unrestricted free agent after the year and CeeDee Lamb — the Cowboys’ top pass-catcher — is also due for a long-term extension.

The team could decide to franchise tag Diggs and Lamb is locked in at least for the short-term thanks to the Cowboys picking up his fifth-year option. Lamb will make around $18 million in 2024 on the fifth-year option.

Jones doesn’t feel the task is “daunting” and is confident they can get all the deals done but says it’s a matter of timing.

“We want to work on all of the above, but we’ll just have to see how this thing plays out,” Jones said. “You can’t dictate when things happen and the timing. It takes two sides. For them to want to sign up, they’ve got to be happy where it is. And vice versa. But I wouldn’t say just because we don’t get it done by the start of the season doesn’t mean we’re not going to ultimately sign them.”

Cowboys Looking to Work Around Dak Prescott’s Deal

The Cowboys don’t have the luxury of trying to build a team around a quarterback on a rookie deal. Dak Prescott is in the small club of quarterbacks making more than $40 million a year and is set to count $59.4 million against the cap in 2024 if the sides don’t reach an extension.

“We’re already at a big number with Dak,” Jones said. “So, when the really daunting part comes is when you move them from a rookie contract to making the type of money quarterbacks make now.”

Prescott and the Cowboys have said publicly that they plan to get a deal done. At this point, Prescott isn’t sweating it and feels confident about his future in Dallas.

“That’s stuff I leave to the Cowboys, and I leave to my agent,” Prescott said. “They got it done years ago and when it comes time to get it done again, I trust in both of them. And as Stephen said, it might happen overnight, who knows? But that’s not any of my concern or in my thought process.”

Prescott is coming off a year where he passed for 3,371 yards, and 28 touchdowns between the regular season and playoffs. However, he also tossed 17 interceptions in 14 games.

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