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Recounting the lead up to Dez Bryant’s deal with the Cowboys provides hope for a Dak Prescott deal

A look back at Dez Bryant’s franchise tag deadline shows it’s never over until the deadline is done.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Atlanta Falcons Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

We are squarely in the eleventh hour as far as negotiations between the Dallas Cowboys and Dak Prescott go. It is the final day before July 15th which means you need to be wearing your seatbelt.

Reports to this point have been of a “this is likely not going to happen” variety as there is seemingly a sense that there will be no new deal between Dak Prescott and the team.

The Cowboys have negotiated plenty of long-term contracts in recent memory, just last year they handed out a handful. Things with DeMarcus Lawrence and Ezekiel Elliott both went down to the wire as the former accelerated his clock by threatening not to get shoulder surgery that he needed and the latter held out deep into the preseason.

What about the last time the franchise tag window was involved? We know that DeMarcus Lawrence played on the tag, but the Cowboys got a deal done with Dez Bryant prior to the tag’s deadline five years ago. We can look to that for a bit of a guide on how things might go.

Here is the final sequence of events that led to Dez Bryant getting his long-term deal done with the Cowboys

Tuesday brought news that there are no “scheduled” talks set up between the Cowboys and Prescott’s representation. While that sounds intimidating, it obviously is not a complete sign that nothing will happen before the deadline.

A reddit user on the Dallas Cowboys subreddit did some excellent work and recounted how things were in the lead up to Dez Bryant’s long-term contract with the team back in 2015. You’ll recall that Bryant had also been tagged and that he needed to get his long-term deal done before the deadline and ultimately did.

One week before the extension deadline, there was “nothing going on” in the negotiation

The next meaningful update came just under 21 hours before the deadline when the alleged AAV for the Cowboys offer was “leaked”

About 5 hours ahead of the deadline, a new rumored AAV number emerges.

Less than 4 hours from the deadline, the chances are “less than 50-50” that a deal gets done.

An hour and a half before the deadline, the sides were finalizing a deal. “It’s happening.”

With 53 minutes to spare, the terms of the deal are revealed.

As you can see, things were very similar with Dez to the point that we are at with Dak. It wasn’t until deadline day that things got serious and within an hour of the deadline that the deal actually got done. In terms of how the Cowboys have operated, this is fairly normal.

There are going to be plenty more reports like this one and they are all going to include the same sort of verbiage. We are at the point posturing is necessary and that is what teams are trying to do (both the Cowboys and Dak Prescott’s representation).

The clock continues to tick.

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