The Dallas Cowboys and quarterback, Dak Prescott, have finally came to an agreement on a contract — 4-years, worth up to $160 million — after going back and forth the past couple of seasons. It’s unclear what led to such discourse between the two parties, but many chalked it up to the fact that Dak wanted a 5-year deal and Jerry Jones only wanted a 4-year contract in place.
Based on the contract, it appears as though both sides will leave the table happy. Jerry gets his 4-year contract that he wanted all along and because of it, Dak got an extra $9 million per year; last season it was reported the Cowboys offered Prescott $33 million per year on average, but now he will be getting an average of $42 million per year.
Quite the come-up for Dak and shows what sticking to your guns can get you. However, on the other hand it shows what stubbornness can do. Jerry elected to sign several players to extensions before Prescott, including Ezekiel Elliott. The quarterback is the most important position on the football field and it took a season ending injury at the position for Jerry to see the real value in Prescott.
Was it the Right Decision?
The initial reaction from some is that they are overpaying for Prescott, he is now currently the second highest paid quarterback behind Patrick Mahomes, and just above Deshaun Watson in terms of salary per year. Is Dak the second best quarterback in the NFL, probably not, but here shortly players like Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson will be getting contract extensions soon, likely pushing the price of Dak up as well.
Come next season there is a pretty good chance Dak isn’t even in the top 5 of the highest paid quarterbacks in the league and some are set to believe that this new contract between Prescott and Dallas could be a glimpse into the NFL’s new television deal coming up which could really inflate quarterback contracts.
Landing Dak for the future and keeping him happy by giving him an actual contract — rather than franchise tagging him for another season was 100% the right decision.
Why Was it the Right Decision?
With contract talk surrounding the Dallas area the past few years, it has caused the football world to step back and evaluate Prescott as a player to find his “worth” so to speak. Is Dak a top 5 quarterback in the NFL, probably not (at least not yet), but he certainly is in the conversation for a top 10 quarterback.
He likely won’t surpass guys like Mahomes and Watson, but he does have the tools to be regarded more highly than Ryan Tannehill and has proven to be a more consistent thrower than both Josh Allen — although Allen is improving — and Lamar Jackson. Dak has been about as consistent as you can ask for from a guy who has only been in the league for only 5 seasons.
In 2019 (the last season he played 16 games in) Prescott was on target with his passes 77.6% of the time which put him in the top 6 among all quarterbacks last season.
Before Dak went down last season with his ankle injury, the Cowboys had their fair share of struggles, but entirely all of those came on the defensive side of the ball and the only thing keeping them in those games was Prescott and the offense. After his injury Dallas struggled to find a way to make things click and when their play started to get better it was already too late.
Dak gives the Cowboys stability and the belief that they can win and sometimes a little hope is all you need. In order for the Cowboys to really take the next step they will need to look at a new head coach, but that story is for a different day.