We’re making this Dak Prescott contract situation too complicated. Just pay him already - Steven Ruiz, USA Today
The Cowboys need to go ahead and get a deal done with their franchise signal caller. Laying out why Dallas should get a deal done with Prescott.
This doesn’t need to be complicated. Prescott has established himself as a true franchise quarterback over the last four years. And just like every other franchise quarterback in need of a new deal, he should be paid market-resetting money.
Jerry, listen. You just tried to play hardball with a RUNNING BACK with no leverage and ended up caving and giving him record-breaking money. Do you really think this is going to work with a quarterback who just finished near the top of the league in almost every relevant passing metric?
Just cut the check already, Jerry. We all know where this is going.
An in the unlikely event that it doesn’t and the Cowboys aren’t willing to give into Prescott’s demands, some other team will be happy to do so.
‘The sack number will be back up’: Cowboys DE Demarcus Lawrence talks the franchise tag, Dak Prescott and more - SportsDay
Right or wrong, many pass rushers are often judged by their sack total. Tank is determined to increase that number in 2020 from the five that he recorded last season.
After tallying only five sacks last season, what happened to you last year?
Lawrence: “Nothing happened to me last year. I know I ended the season with five sacks, but I also helped other players boost their numbers back up to double digits. It’s not a one-man game and I know how to play the game the right way. I know how to make plays when plays come my way. And I also know how to make sure my teammates are making their plays. You don’t have to worry about nothing. Trust me, the sack number will be back up.”
The Cowboys’ star pass rusher also shared some thoughts regarding Dak Prescott and the quarterback’s contract negotiations.
What advice would you give to teammate Dak Prescott if he was forced to play this season under a franchise tag?
Lawrence: “I really don’t have advice for another man. He has to make his own decisions. I feel like he has some good leadership council in his corner so I feel like he’ll do the right thing. He’ll get paid.”
What would it take for Dak Prescott to not be the quarterback of the future for the Dallas Cowboys? - Danny Phantom, BTB
On the flip side, what would have to happen for a deal not to get done between the Cowboys and Dak?
What if things don’t fit? If both sides are holding firm and they are too far apart from reaching an agreement, then what? It is hard to imagine a scenario where Prescott, who has career football earnings one-third of the size as the team’s long-snapper, would turn down $31.4 million in some type of Le’Veon Bell holdout situation. If team Prescott did take such a powerful stand, then the test of “just how important is Dak to this team” would be underway as Dalton would inherit the most favorable situation he’s had in his entire career. Such a decision would also create a huge riff in Cowboys Nation and into the locker room. A line would be drawn in the sand as some would view the ownership snubbing one of the team’s most beloved leaders, while others would question how much does Dak have to earn to keep him happy. It would get ugly.
Instead, what is more likely to happen in this type of standoff is that we would see Prescott begrudgingly sign the tag, and once again be playing in a contract year. The table would be set for him to have a huge season with so many great weapons around him, ultimately costing the Cowboys even more money to keep him. If Stephen Jones isn’t budging, this could lead to one giant mess. This Cowboys team is set up so well for the future where the only thing that could mess it up is if the team puts themselves in a situation where they become one of the “have nots” when it comes to the quarterback position. Just like his father before him, does Stephen think he can outsmart the system and produce a winning football team his own way?
Again, we are way outside-the-box thinking on this as it’s almost inconceivable to think the Cowboys plan of success features anything other than Prescott at quarterback. But if there is a crack in all of this, it could be Jones’ unyielding ways of not paying top dollar for things he doesn’t believe are worth the price.
Evaluating 5th-year options: Who’s the best at identifying 1st-round talent? - Mike Sando, The Athletic
Which teams are the most successful in identifying first-round talent? Sando examined.
T-10. Dallas Cowboys: 71 percent
Expected pickup rate: 54 percent
Actual vs. expected: +18 percent (sixth)
The five players whose options Dallas picked up all earned at least one Pro Bowl selection while with the Cowboys. Frederick’s retirement and the departure of Jones in free agency leaves Dallas with less to show for generally strong drafting.
‘I can’t thank her enough’: Cowboys’ Trevon Diggs appreciates mother’s will, sacrifice during his journey to the NFL - Michael Gehlken, SportsDay
Diggs was thought to be in consideration for the Cowboys first-round selection in 2020, but the team was able to grab him in the second. A great piece on the former Alabama star thanking his mother on Mother’s Day.
The moment was a realization not only of a father’s dream but a mother’s will.
Stephanie worked at Amtrak for three decades but, as need be, held other jobs at Target and Toys R Us. Between 18-hour railroad shifts that weather delays sometimes stretched far longer, she wore both hats as mother and father.
Her sacrifice makes Trevon appreciative of his journey to the NFL.
It makes him appreciative on Mother’s Day.
“I love her with all of my heart,” Trevon said in a phone interview. “I can’t thank her enough. I don’t know how to repay her. There’s nothing I can do to match everything that she has done for me in the past. … She worked hard. I’m doing it for her now. Now, it’s my turn. I’m going to work hard for her.”
Film room: 3 underrated traits among 2020 Cowboys draftees, including CeeDee Lamb’s punt return ability - John Owning, SportsDay
We know how good CeeDee Lamb is at catching passes, but what about returning punts? Yep, he offers dynamic ability in that regard, as well.
Lamb is a special talent with the ball in his hands, so it shouldn’t surprise that he thrives with the space available to him on punt returns. Lamb displays outstanding open-field vision to identify running lanes and manipulate the leverage of pursuing defenders.
His creativity, burst, balance and elusiveness make him a threat for a big return every time he hauls in a punt. Lamb has the rare ability to be able to string together consecutive moves to elude multiple defenders in space, showing impressive field awareness and body coordination in the process. Despite weighing in at 198 pounds, Lamb’s strong contact balance enables him to shrug off defenders who don’t properly wrap up.
Unfortunately, Lamb doesn’t have the deep speed to outrun pursuit angles and turn his long returns into touchdowns. A common occurrence on his biggest punt returns was him getting chased down by defenders before he could reach pay dirt.
But Lamb’s return ability should be a huge boon for a Cowboys team that had one of the least effective punt return units in 2019, even if he’s lacking in the deep speed department. Special teams coordinator John Fassel’s new schemes, on top of Lamb’s return skills, should enable the Cowboys’ punt return unit to be much improved in 2020.
Ranking the 13 most interesting games on the NFL schedule - Sheil Kapadia, The Athletic
The Cowboys land on the list of the 13 “most interesting” games of the upcoming season.
6. Week 16: Eagles at Cowboys (Sunday, Dec. 27, 4:25 p.m. ET)
William Hill has the Cowboys as slight favorites (plus-125) over the Eagles (plus-135) in the NFC East. There’s a pretty good chance this game could go a long way in determining who wins the division. Last year, the Week 16 matchup between the teams was essentially a division championship game. For the Eagles, I could see Carson Wentz weeping on the sideline as he watches Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup make catches all over the field for Dak Prescott. For the Cowboys, I could see Mike McCarthy viewing this as an opportunity to prove to the world he’s Mr. Analytics. Maybe he waits for the camera to zoom in on him in the fourth quarter before breaking out a TI-82 calculator to help him decide whether to go for it on fourth down. One way or another, there will be a lot at stake, and this game will entertain.
Stands Without Fans: 5 Ideas for NFL Broadcasts in 2020 - Mauricio Rodriguez, Inside The Star
What could the NFL do if fans aren’t allowed in stadiums this year?
1. Mic’ them all up.
When we talk about missing fans, we’re not talking about watching them sitting in the stands. Sure, we’ll miss that too, but that’s not the biggest issue at all. After all, the cameras will still be showing us what we usually see, which is the playing field.
What we will miss is the crowd noise. Fans getting loud in crucial third downs. Thousands of people screaming when their favorite player scores a touchdown.
Aspiring sportscasters always are taught the importance of shutting up in big moments and let the crowd carry the game. Well, now there won’t be a live audience. How do you replace what fans are hearing at home?
My idea? Mic’ them all up. Okay, maybe not all, but a lot of players. But forget about saving it for post-game clips. Let us listen to it live. What is J.J. Watt telling the Bucs offensive line between plays? What is Jaylon Smith talking about with Leighton Vander Esch in the sidelines?
Let us listen to it all!
Our Saddest Mother’s Day: A Time of Dual Loss For Cowboys Prescott - Mike Fisher, Cowboys Maven
This story is certainly worth your time.
I think I can work on the assumption that Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott is attempting to do the same thing ... only his “celebration of life’’ is surely doubly traumatic, because May 10, 2020 isn’t just Mother’s Day in the Prescott family.
It also marks the birthday of Dak’s brother Jace Prescott, who passed away on April 23 ... just a couple of weeks shy of what would have been Jace’s 32nd birthday.
“It is with great sadness and support that we share the news of the passing of Jace Prescott,’’ the Dallas Cowboys said in a late-Thursday night statement on the day of the NFL Draft. “The loss of Tad and Dak’s brother is devastating. At this incredibly difficult time, the Prescott family asks only for prayers and respect for their privacy.’’
The Dallas Cowboys got a special player in CeeDee Lamb. Rischad Whitfield, who has been training CeeDee since high school, stopped by The Ocho to tell us more about the team’s top draft pick.
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