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Report: Dallas Cowboys heading in direction where they’re likely to use franchise tag on Dak Prescott

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The Cowboys and Prescott continue the negotiation dance.

NFL: Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The offseason will finally be underway for all 32 teams come Sunday night, but the Dallas Cowboys have been preparing for 2020 for some time now. Dallas has changed head coaches, filled out their staff, and are grinding all sorts of tape in preparation for the 2020 NFL Draft. Free agency is also an issue that will need to be addressed as will re-signing certain Cowboys with expiring contracts.

The most marquee member of the Cowboys that is in need of a new deal is quarterback Dak Prescott. While it has been speculated for a long time already, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Cowboys are likely to apply the franchise tag to Dak Prescott.

With no long-term contract in sight, the Dallas Cowboys and Dak Prescott are heading straight toward a situation in which the team will have to use its franchise tag on the star quarterback, league sources told ESPN.

At this point, the franchise tag looks inevitable, according to sources, although neither side wants the tag to come into play. Dallas strongly prefers a long-term agreement, and will continue to push to sign Prescott to an extension in the coming weeks. Prescott, who is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent next month, also wants a long-term deal.

But the sides disagree over the two-time Pro Bowler’s value, leaving them at an impasse.

This is not shocking by any means as there is no way that the Cowboys are going to let their quarterback hit the open market. Finding a franchise quarterback isn’t exactly easy and the Cowboys were fortunate to stumble upon Dak four years ago.

Prescott made the media rounds in Miami throughout the week leading up to Super Bowl LIV and said in many interviews that he and his agents thought a new deal was going to be done before the 2019 season began. He also noted that talks stalled around Week 4 or 5 and that at that point it was accepted that it would become an offseason thing.

Many people have been championing the idea of paying Dak since he first became eligible for a contract extension a year ago. Had the Cowboys done that they would have gotten him for much less than they are likely going to now, the market for a quarterback is constantly rising.

This is by no means any reason to panic as a franchise tag will likely only be applied as an effort to buy time. The Cowboys are going to have to get this deal done, but the when of it all still remains to be figured out.