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What Ryan Tannehill’s contract tells us about Dak Prescott’s negotiations

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Another quarterback contract in the NFL and what it means to the Cowboys.

NFL Pro Bowl Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images

The quarterback market is one that is easy to understand in principle. Generally, but not always, the next guy to get paid is the latest to set the market. This was not exactly the case for newly-paid Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

Tennessee signed Tannehill (who went to the greatest school in the world by the way, says this particular Fightin’ Texas Aggie) to a one-year deal an offseason ago after he had struggled up to that point with the Miami Dolphins. Tannehill bet on himself to a degree, and was eventually called upon and played well. He is now the starter in Nashville for the foreseeable future.

We now live in a world where Ryan Tannehill is paid approximately $30M per year and has a deal with $91M in total guarantees. If you managed to still have any doubt that Dak Prescott is going to break the bank, this deal should open your eyes.

Many will note that Tannehill helped the Titans reach the AFC Championship Game last year (these people also conveniently forget who Derrick Henry is while making the claim that Dak Prescott is carried by Ezekiel Elliott, for what it’s worth). It is absolutely true that he did do that; however, that hardly means that he is the greater quarterback. There aren’t very many NFL minds that would take Tannehill over Prescott.

Consider the fact that Tannehill is being paid $29.5M and that the Cowboys reportedly offered Dak a value that is only $4M more than that, and you get some inkling why a deal has yet to be finalized between Prescott and the Cowboys.

People talk so much about the market and the role that it can play with negotiating quarterback contracts. The reality here is that the Cowboys are not only letting the market continue to rise, they’re allowing to become more defined. More contracts mean more lines in the sand are known which means there are more arguments for Prescott’s team to make. Time is on their side, and now so is Ryan Tannehill’s deal.

The clock is ticking.