FRISCO – Dallas Cowboys fans are highly aware of the “cap hell” accusations hurled annually in the direction of team owner Jerry Jones’ club. But relief is on the way, as quarterback Dak Prescott’s new $160 million deal, signed last spring, is part of the “problem” as presently constructed but part of the solution in the coming days.
As team sources told CowboysSI.com some time ago, the construction of the deal includes a “flip of a switch” that when executed, can give Dallas about $16 million in 2022 cap relief. Additionally, the team can move money on guard Zack Martin in a way that gains $7 million of room.
Dak Prescott (L) and Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones (R)
Dak Prescott (R) and Dalton Schultz (L)
The Dak “switch” will be activated sometime between now (as we approach the Tuesday franchise tag deadline) and March 16 (the start of the NFL business year, at which time teams must be $208-million cap-compliant.)
The Martin switch is also planned.
While money will be pushed out, no real year will be added – and no real money, either. This is a common bit of craftsmanship as performed by COO Stephen Jones’ “big calculator” people here inside The Star.
This is about pre-designed “switches” that can be “flipped.”
It requires no renegotiation with Prescott or Martin. It requires no sacrifice from the players. It generally requires no approval from the players..
It’s already approved.
In layman’s terms, money that was going to be paid to Dak’s left pocket will now be shoved into his right pocket, a bookkeeping trick that explains the voidable years at the end of his deal. He’s currently scheduled for “zero” salary in the final year of his contract, when he’s 33. This move will change that.
Martin has a $20 million cap hit in 2022, but Dallas can add voidable years to spread that money out..
The best scenario Dak is still playing at that time, and therefore earning the money shuffled forward to 2026 way back in 2022. The hope would be the same for the All-Pro Martin.
Dak is still getting his money, and Dallas still believes he’s the right guy. As Jones said recently, “Dak has played at a level that can take teams to Super Bowls and win Super Bowls. … He’s probably at the top of the list (of reasons for Cowboys optimism.)”
The potential $23 million of room will help … as Dallas enters the week about $22 million over the cap … with decisions on Amari Cooper, DeMarcus Lawrence, Dalton Schultz, Randy Gregory and more to come.