The Dallas Morning News has reported that the Dallas Cowboys have released backup center Phil Costa. The move was expected by most, but the higher-than-expected salary cap gave the team a chance to stop and consider the move. After due consideration, the team decided they did not need him. The release saves the Cowboys $1.5 million in cap space, with a cost of only $225,000 in dead money, according to Spotrac. This puts the Cowboys slightly under the cap with plenty of other options should they need to get more money for free agency.
Costa, acquired by Dallas as an undrafted free agent in 2010, was somewhat undersized for the center position. He earned the starting job in 2011 as the team had to go with a patchwork offensive line, but was not performing well towards the end of the season. The drafting of Travis Frederick in 2013 meant that Costa was likely to never be more than a backup, and Mackenzy Bernadeau arguably gives the Cowboys a better option that is already on the roster.
While this can be seen as a cap move, it is also a way for the team to try to get better as well. It also can be seen as a signal that they may be looking for depth in the interior of the offensive line in the draft, and feel they can find better options at lower cost.