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Cowboys news: Cap-rich Cowboys aren’t worried about future paydays

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Both Dak Prescott and DeMarcus Lawrence are solely focused on getting better and letting the contracts work themselves out.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Dak Prescott wants to be best QB Cowboys have ever had - Clarence Hill, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Prescott is not focused on the big payday as his day will come. Jason Garrett approves of the young quarterback's approach.

Considering that Prescott’s 2018 base salary of $630,000 is 66th among quarterbacks in the league, a pay raise would seem to be a huge motivation.

But Prescott, who joined the team as a fourth-round pick in 2016 before retiring all-time leading passer Tony Romo and earning 32 starts over the past two seasons, knows he can earn a contract extension after the season.

”I don’t think it’s a good idea for anybody to ever think about their contract when they’re playing,” Garrett said. “You want to approach the game as a professional and strive to be your best every day. That’s what we try to instill in our guys regardless of what the business side of football is. You really don’t have to tell Dak that. That’s what he’s all about. That’s part of how he approaches it every day since the minute he got here.”

Why the Dallas Cowboys are all-in on quarterback Dak Prescott - Cole Patterson, Blogging The Boys
The Cowboys have made it very clear that they intend to go all in and build around their very talented third-year quarterback.

The Dallas Cowboys sit in extremely rare company. A group that only consists of four franchises as we prepare for the 2018 NFL football season. The Cowboys have a quarterback drafted in round three or beyond as the face of the franchise — something that 28 other teams cannot say.

Out of 150 quarterbacks drafted in the third round or later since the turn of the century, only Tom Brady, Russell Wilson, Kirk Cousins, and Dak Prescott have developed into franchise-caliber quarterbacks. As noted above, that is less than 2.6%.

Sure, Dak has only been a professional for two seasons at this point in time, but his body of work is nothing short of impressive. Take a look for yourself:

Dak Prescott wants to be best Dallas Cowboys QB ever - Todd Archer, ESPN
Dak Prescott was asked about a payday in his future but reiterated that he's got bigger goals to accomplish.

“I want to be the best I can,” Prescott told reporters at the Cowboys’ Reliant Home Run Derby to benefit the Salvation Army at Dr Pepper Ballpark. “I want to be the best quarterback that the Cowboys ever had. So when I go in each and every day, it’s just about being the best player I can be. All that stuff comes when you play the game well.”

DeMarcus Lawrence Not Worried About Playing On The Franchise Tag - David Helman, Dallas Cowboys
DeMarcus Lawrence doesn't take offense to not having his long-term deal, he's focused on his performance and the rest will take care of itself.

Lawrence’s situation feels like exactly the opposite. Not only does the 26-year-old plan to play on the tag, but he sounds happy to do so. His logic, however uncommon it might be, makes plenty of season.

“I mean, it really doesn’t matter,” he said. “If I do my thing – I put up my stats and I help my team win, they ain’t got no choice but to sign me. That’s how I feel.”

It’s a good point. If Lawrence hits double-digit sacks again in 2018, after posting 14.5 in 2017, paying him will be a problem the Cowboys are happy to have on their hands.

Cap heaven: Dallas Cowboys projected for huge space for 2019 - Tom Ryle, Blogging The Boys
Yes, you read that right. And they say things never change in Dallas.

Let’s check Over the Cap and see what they currently project for cap space in 2019 . . .

$71,497,471.

No, there’s nothing wrong with your screen. That is over 71 MILLION DOLLARS in cap space for next year.

What cap hell?

Remember all those worries about finding cap space to have room for the Zack Martin and DeMarcus Lawrence deals? And what will happen when they get past the window provided by the rookie deals for Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott?

Pfft.


Byron Jones talks transition back to corner, new secondary coach Kris Richard - Kate Hairopoulos, SportsDay
Byron Jones is excited for the opportunity to play cornerback, the position Kris Richard believed he should have played from day one.

But as Jones makes the transition, don’t expect to find him studying game footage of former Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, a four-time Pro Bowler, or the other DBs who made a name for themselves in Seattle.

”You have to develop your own style of play,” Jones said Wednesday from the team’s seventh-annual Reliant Home Run Derby in Frisco. “He [Sherman] has as different frame than me. I’m just trying to find my own style out there.”

Jones said that he is becoming more comfortable back at corner after working through the early part of the offseason program. He’ll be able to better gauge his progress when organized team activities begin, starting next week. Jones and the Cowboys aren’t allowed to take part in live contact, but 11-on-11 drills will be permitted.

Cowboys coach Paul Alexander wrote a book and he grades offensive linemen by how they squeeze ketchup - RJ Ochoa, Blogging The Boys
The new Cowboys offensive line coach is a wonder as he's got a very strange way of judging his linemen.

Perform is a look into the mind of one of the NFL’s more fascinating figures, and if you don’t believe me you need to understand how he evaluates players based off of how they use a ketchup bottle. Yes, a ketchup bottle.

The top moments from 12 seasons of 'Hard Knocks' - NFL Nation- ESPN
HBO's Hard Knocks has been an offseason staple for NFL fans and will now cover the Cleveland Browns. The Cowboys have been the focus of the show twice and there were memorable moments to be had.

2002: The Cowboys were a team in transition with only Emmitt Smith remaining from the days of the team’s renowned “Triplets.” After a 5-11 finish in 2001, the Cowboys believed they were on to better things in Dave Campo’s third year coaching. The Cowboys definitely lived up to the made-for-TV moments: Chad Hutchinson, fighting for the starting quarterback job, spent time playing the guitar with receiver Richmond Flowers; receiver Anthony Lucas’ gut-wrenching call on Jerry Jones’ phone after he tore up his knee for the second year in a row; and George Foreman speaking to the team. The lasting image from this “Hard Knocks” season was Campo in a wet suit during a break in camp at SeaWorld in San Antonio playing with the dolphins.

Here’s Why Jaylon Smith Plans To Be “Better Than Notre Dame 100 Percent” - Rob Phillips, Dallas Cowboys
Jaylon Smith has faced a long road to recovery but in his third year is looking to return his pre-injury Top-5 draft stock status.

Here’s proof that Smith feels healthier and healthier: He says he has trained this offseason without the foot brace he used last year to counter the movement restrictions caused by the nerve damage he sustained with the old knee injury.

“There’s a great chance that I won’t have to play with it this year,” he said.

“People thought I’d never play the game again, and I’ve been able to accomplish that. Each and every day I’ve gotten better. Last year each game I improved. It just feels great to continue to be able to improve my health.”

Dez Bryant to Green Bay seems impractical, but a number of AFC teams have spots for him - Tim Cowlishaw, SportsDay
Jason Witten said he thought Green Bay would be a good landing spot for Dez Bryant, but the Packers appear uninterested. It seems more likely for him to jump conferences altogether.

Cowlishaw: No. They haven’t shown any interest. They have good wide receivers and they added Jimmy Graham at tight end. I don’t know where he fits with Green Bay. It’s a fun story to think of Aaron Rodgers putting those balls up high for Dez to go get, but it seems impractical. I think a number of AFC teams have spots for him, including Houston, Indianapolis and Buffalo. But someone has to make an offer.